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Norman M.
Norman M., Principal psychotherapist in private practice. Newspaper contributor, over 2000 satisfied clients on JA
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2568
Experience:  ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), ECP, UKCP Registered.
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Hi, My ignorance may be my downfall here because I have

Customer Question


My ignorance may be my downfall here because I have done searches on the internet to see if i can diagnose myself, whereas a Medical Professional would have the right answers. I believe that I may have bi-polar disorder, but im in my early 20's and if i recall correctly it shows earlier in childhood and adolescence. My happiness/depression comes in patches. For a few days I'll be very content, very motivated and then all of a sudden it changes into depression where everything seems huge amount of effort along with other symptoms and this can last for several days. I went to my local GP a few weeks ago for Panic attacks and was perscribed 500microgram dose of Xanex/Xanax? twice a day which helped with my anxiety but i still have ups and downs. Should i see a Psychiatrist or am I just being over zealous?

Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Norman M. replied 7 years ago.

These mood swings could be an indicator of Bipolar depression, but not necessarily so.
Likewise, age of onset is highly variable.

Frankly, self diagnosis is not a good option, the only real way to be sure is to get a face to face evaluation by your Doctor.

Have a look at this site - you may find it helpful:

Furthermore, I don't know what kind of treatment you had from your psychologist, but
medication combined with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is an extremely effective approach.

It is a form of therapy that addresses problems in a direct and targeted way and is brief compared with most other therapies.

CBT is based on the fact that what we think in any given situation generates beliefs about, and reactions to that situation, and also cause the behaviour and feelings which flow from those beliefs and reactions.

These ‘automatic thoughts’ are so fast that generally, we are unaware that we have even had them. We call them ANTS (automatic negative thoughts) for short.

If the pattern of thinking we use, or our beliefs about our situation are even slightly distorted,

the resulting emotions and actions that flow from them can be extremely negative and unhelpful. The object of CBT is to identify these ‘automatic thoughts’ then to re-adjust our thoughts and beliefs so that they are entirely realistic and correspond to the realities of our lives, and that therefore, the resulting emotions, feelings and actions we have will be more useful and helpful.

Cognitive therapists do not usually interpret or seek for unconscious motivations but bring cognitions and beliefs into the current focus of attention and through guided discovery encourage clients to gently re-evaluate their thinking.

Therapy is not seen as something “done to” the client. CBT is not about trying to prove a client wrong and the therapist right, or getting into unhelpful debates. Through collaboration, questioning and re-evaluating their views, clients come to see for themselves that there are alternatives and that they can change.

Clients try things out in between therapy sessions, putting what has been learned into practice, learning how therapy translates into real life improvement.

Please visit this website for much more detailed information on CBT:

If you cannot afford to see a therapist, there are good free CBT based self-help resources here:

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Hi Norman,


Thank you for your response. Very detailed and quite content with your answers. I will look into these options.


Kind Regards

Expert:  Norman M. replied 7 years ago.
Thank you -can you please click on the accept button so I may be paid?

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