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The psychopharm who diagnosed me told me that BP III is cyclic depression + mania/mixed/hypo when on antidepressants. That's what happened to me a few times.

I think it's good to be able to be diagnosed BP because it means that professionals take you more seriously when you tell them that ADs make you hypo/manic/mixed, rather than putting you right back on them. Before my diagnosis changed, my pdoc was unwilling to prescribe lamictal because I was technically MDD, so I just got put on yet another AD. After my diagnosis changed, I got access to better meds.

I think that if hypomania alone can be diagnosed BP NOS, depression alone should be as well, if it is clearly cyclic. I don't know if I think Bipolar 3 should be in there, but I think they should modify the exclusion criteria for NOS.

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well my first doc said that I haved soft bipolared, that was even not necessary to me to take meds, Therapy would just do the trick. That was in 2007-2008.

the second doc said that I haved soft bipolared, OCD, and maybe PTSD. That was in 2010.

I called my first doc not long ago and she said to me that I was Bipolar NOS and that was it, nothing else.

the third and actual doc has not give me a full diagnostic, but pretty much she said that I have Bipolar (dunno if soft or not) with psychotic tendencies, and anxioty disorders. This was this year.

I think if we conside that I am bipolar, the disease has progressive and probably its alrealdy a BP II or something like that.

The meds are very unstable for me, some worse my mood really bad, some get me more happyer. Well I cycle in question of seconds; this holy thing its really driving me insane.

But really what do I think I have? Borderline for sure. Every single thing that I read about this disease its exactly how I am and act without meds, and with them.

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I don't like the term "soft bipolar" because it sounds milder than regular bipolar. "Soft bipolar" depression can be just as miserable and destructive as bipolar depression. I like "Bipolar NOS" better because it says that you're somewhere on the bipolar spectrum, and you should be treated with bipolar meds, but we don't yet have a category for what you are.

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I would have to agree that all MI is on a spectrum and sometimes not easily placed in a bin. I also think that it is good to be diagnosed bipolar even if you are mostly depressed because it opens up a whole lot more meds to try. No one, not a single pdoc, thought of trying me on carbamazepine except one. My brain immediately liked it, and it has helped me immensely, even though I'm MDD not bipolar.

As for soft bipolar it is just tint of bipolar, and I'm not sure it belongs in the DSM. I think that really this pigeon-holing of people with MI is in general bad, and that the symptoms should guide the treatment. In fact, i think in clinical practice that is what is really done, and this discussion of the DSM is really an academic exercise.

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I don't think this comparative thing works. Whoever doesn't respond to meds probably has it worse. But even without response, psychotic depression is worse than regular depression but not as bad a mixed psychotic depression.... but, ha, it's all subjective. My experience of bad might not be yours, and there really is no true way to compare the subjective experience of pain.

IIRC, DSM V is reviewing and will likely broaden the MDD category to recognize symptoms or “soft bipolar,” and I believe the specifiers for BPII may capture some symptoms, too.

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I suspect my first pdoc thought I was more on the "soft bipolar" scale, and I was dx'ed BP NOS. My current doc thinks I'm BP II. I personally think that the Bipolar in me has progressed as I have gotten older.

BP NOS accounts for the "soft" crowd to some extent.

It is funny that we have these little boxes to put people in, and they rarely tell the whole story. People are so unique. We probably won't get all of the manifestations of mood disorders in the DSM, and I don't know if we should try. Enough so that clinicians can communicate with each other, I suppose.

there really is no true way to compare the subjective experience of pain.

This.

People express their pain differently. I'm not sure if the person who "needs" to get restrained is in more pain than the person crying in the corner (Until perhaps they get restrained?) I was at a peer support training, and this was the stance that the trainer took. It's important to take all pain seriously.

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Actually, I know my p-doc changed my diagnosis from BPII to BP NOS and it wasn't because he thinks I am soft-bipolar; it is actually because I have some Bipolar I symptoms, but I am clearly not BP I.

So NOS really just covers parts of the spectrum that do not neatly fall into BP I and II. Whether it is a few symptoms too few, or one or two too many, both are forms BP NOS.

My brain is really overwhelmed with headaches right now, so I hope I am making sense.

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I wouldn't say that "soft bipolar" is worse" than BPI at all. And I also wouldn't say that BPI is worse than "soft bipolar." They both have their own sets of demons. I always thought depression and psychotic depression was the worst thing that could ever happen to me. But psychotic mania is pretty darn horrible too. Too many pieces to pick up,.

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Agreeing with tamagotchi-- arguably soft bipolar is worse than BPI and even BPII because most of the mood episodes are depressive.

I'm pretty sure most of the mood episodes for all kinds of bipolar disorder are depressive, though I'm too lazy to look it up right now.

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Actually, I know my p-doc changed my diagnosis from BPII to BP NOS and it wasn't because he thinks I am soft-bipolar; it is actually because I have some Bipolar I symptoms, but I am clearly not BP I.

So NOS really just covers parts of the spectrum that do not neatly fall into BP I and II. Whether it is a few symptoms too few, or one or two too many, both are forms BP NOS.

My brain is really overwhelmed with headaches right now, so I hope I am making sense.

Yeah. Someone with BP NOS can have mania, it just doesn't last long enough (one week).

BP NOS can really be absolutely anything, There are no specific criteria for NOS. It's just anything a pdoc thinks is bipolar, but isn't sure if or how he or she should categorize it. For instance, I was NOS for a good long while, because when I first started seeing my pdoc, she wasn't sure if I was a I or a Ii, and I was in no hurry to pin it down.

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As far as suffering goes, I don't think there is a worse. Each person is their own worse. Having to deal with anything negative long term wears you down where you see other things as being easier to handle.. and they are, short term. The grass looks greener and whatnot. The longer you deal with something the more of a burden it becomes.

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The psychopharm who diagnosed me told me that BP III is cyclic depression + mania/mixed/hypo when on antidepressants. That's what happened to me a few times.

I think it's good to be able to be diagnosed BP because it means that professionals take you more seriously when you tell them that ADs make you hypo/manic/mixed, rather than putting you right back on them. Before my diagnosis changed, my pdoc was unwilling to prescribe lamictal because I was technically MDD, so I just got put on yet another AD. After my diagnosis changed, I got access to better meds.

I think that if hypomania alone can be diagnosed BP NOS, depression alone should be as well, if it is clearly cyclic. I don't know if I think Bipolar 3 should be in there, but I think they should modify the exclusion criteria for NOS.

I'm generally not a big fan of an ever expanding bipolar spectrum. If a signifier is used too broadly or loosely, it loses all meaning eventually. I don't really think this experience is an argument for a Bipolar III. I think it's an argument for seeking out pdocs who are willing to prescribe off label, which every one I've ever had has been, and participating assertively in your own treatment. Prescribing lamictal for MDD is not a big stretch at all. I'd have big concerns about a pdoc who wasn't keeping up well enough to know that.

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okay I have questions that I cant find the answers to anywhere and I really want to be able to understand this topic haha so

what is:

MDD

MI

IIRC

P-doc (and all over the forums and I have seen p-doc and t-doc and idk if there are other ones. I understand it is a doctor and I am thinking psychiatrist but I dont know the other ones)

AD

by the way I have a mood disorder NOS that is really similar to bipolar type 2 but I have way more depressive episodes than hypomanic ones and am depressed mildly most of the time until I have an episode.... so they dont really know what to diagnose me with. I am on 200 mg of lamictal/lamotrigine

if would be amazing if you could say what those abreviations stand for because I am so lost hahaha

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okay I have questions that I cant find the answers to anywhere and I really want to be able to understand this topic haha so

what is:

MDD

MI

IIRC

P-doc (and all over the forums and I have seen p-doc and t-doc and idk if there are other ones. I understand it is a doctor and I am thinking psychiatrist but I dont know the other ones)

AD

by the way I have a mood disorder NOS that is really similar to bipolar type 2 but I have way more depressive episodes than hypomanic ones and am depressed mildly most of the time until I have an episode.... so they dont really know what to diagnose me with. I am on 200 mg of lamictal/lamotrigine

if would be amazing if you could say what those abreviations stand for because I am so lost hahaha

You can find all that here: http://www.crazyboards.org/forums/index.php/topic/848-glossary/

Welcome. ;)

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I don't think a BP III category would be particulary helpful, especially if anyone is going to call it 'soft bipolar'. I think the term 'soft bipolar' stands a good chance of getting picked up by the media morons and distorted beyond all recognition, and end up being understood by many people to be 'bipolar lite', as someone else mentioned. I don't think anyone anywhere on the bipolar spectrum has symptoms that could conceivably be written off as 'not as bad' as other forms of bipolar by ignorant docs or others. I can imagine someone in a crushing depression with non-supportive family and friends being told, "Well, you only have soft bipolar so you're not that bad off, so just snap out of it!"

I am content with BP I, BP II, and BP NOS.

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