A reserve deputy with the Orange County Sheriff Department, Dr. Jorge Galindo provides counseling services through his private practice in California alongside his wife, Miriam Galindo, Psy.D. While completing his doctoral internship at the distinguished St. Joseph Hospital, Dr. Jorge Galindo received specialized training in bipolar spectrum disorders.
Bipolar disorder, known for its extreme mood swings with episodes of mania and depression, actually encompasses a spectrum of disorders, including bipolar I, bipolar II, and cyclothymia.
Distinguished mainly by its extreme periods of mania, bipolar I disorder usually includes periods of depression as well. Bipolar II, by contrast, has much lower manic periods, referred to as hypomanias, and more extended depressive episodes, often leading to misdiagnosis as major depression. Cyclothymia refers to a less severe form of the disorder, with alternating periods of hypomania and depression.
Another form of bipolar spectrum disorder known as rapid-cycling includes at least four manic and depressive episodes within a year’s time. The validity of its inclusion remains a matter of debate in psychology.
Bipolar Spectrum Disorder
Dr. Jorge Galindo has more than 20 years of experience as a licensed marriage, family, and child therapist in the Irvine, California, area. Over the course of his career in therapy, Dr. Jorge Galindo has supported individuals who experience a variety of mental health issues, including trauma and bipolar spectrum disorder.
Bipolar spectrum disorder is an umbrella term used to describe a series of related mental health disorders, most notably bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, and cyclothymic disorder. While all three disorders are characterized by symptoms of both depression and mania, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV) clearly distinguishes each one from the others.
Bipolar I disorder involves frequent manic and depressive episodes that occur simultaneously. Individuals living with bipolar I may or may not experience psychotic episodes as the result of their persistent manic depressive state.
The manic depressive symptoms of bipolar II disorder, meanwhile, are less likely to effect a person’s day-to-day activities, not only because they are comparatively less severe than those of bipolar I, but also because instances of mania and depression interchange rather than overlap. Furthermore, individuals dealing with bipolar II do not face the risk of psychotic episodes.
Finally, cyclothymic disorder can be viewed as a lower level bipolar spectrum disorder. Individuals who suffer from cyclothymic disorder experience brief, intermittent periods of depression and hypomania, a lesser form of mania.
Bipolar Spectrum Disorders
Licensed as a family and marriage therapist, Dr. Jorge Galindo has extensive experience working with adolescents and parents. Dr. Jorge Galindo pursued his doctoral internship at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, California. His work at the respected inpatient psychiatric hospital focused on assessing and treating bipolar (BP) spectrum disorders.
The BP spectrum model defines a variety of bipolar conditions, including cyclothymia and bipolar I. Patients with the latter condition have suffered from manic episodes at least once in their lives. They have also had episodes of depression that may have run the gamut from extremely severe to mild.
Those who are diagnosed with bipolar II have experienced hypomania, a less intense form of mania, indicating that they maintain a certain level of control over their actions. Cyclothymia involves moods that “cycle” and are even less severe.
Even within bipolar I patients, symptoms vary widely in duration and intensity. Some experience ongoing symptoms, while others may find episodes of mania and depression separated by months or years. For this reason, an individualized diagnosis by an experienced practitioner is required to receive proper care for bipolar spectrum disorders.