What is Euphoric Mania?

Euphoric mania feels wonderful. At the beginning, it is exhilarating. You have lots of confidence. You can talk your way around, out of, and into any situation. You are on top of the world, in fact, you feel like you own and control the world. It is addictive. Your mind is sharp, your perceptions spot on. Now the mania is moving into the next level and your judgment is diminished to the point that you will do some pretty stupid things and after the episode is over, you will look back, cringe, and think  “I can’t believe I did that.”  You might lose your family, friends, your health, all your money, and/or your career. But you’re manic and you don’t care, you can’t care. Your prefrontal lobes aren’t working, and you can not process information related to the consequences of your actions. When you are manic you absolutely can not see what you are doing to yourself or to those around you. 

Bipolar Disorder makes it difficult to regulate your emotions. “Normal” people tend to react “normally” (within a range of behaviors considered normal) to events in predictable ways. People with bipolar disorder often overreact to events that are triggers for them. For example, imagine going to a show that you really loved and coming out of the theatre elated and happy. Those are normal, appropriate, emotions related to an event that you just experienced. Now take the theatre event away, but imagine experiencing those same feelings (magnified 100 times), and that is euphoric mania. There is no rhyme or reason for the feelings. The overblown emotions are caused by the illness. Euphoric mania is wonderful at the beginning but it can turn dark and scary as it progresses towards one of the inevitable outcomes – the crash.

It was well know even in ancient times, that mania can manifest in several ways or change during an episode. During Hippocrates time, scholars observed, described, and recorded different mental states including mania.  Aretaeus of Cappadocia, a  famous Greek physician, lived in Alexandria in the first century AD and wrote the following: “Some patients with mania are cheerful – they laugh, play, dance day and night, and stroll through the market, sometimes with a garland on their head, as if they had won a game: these patients do not worry their relatives. But others fly into a rage…”  In my experience, I am happy and confident, kind and loving to those who support my mania and allow me to revel in my euphoria. I’m the opposite with anyone who tries to thwart me or tell me that I am not myself, and heaven help them if they try to tell me that I need help.  

There is a wide range of emotions and behaviors that typify any kind of mania and they include at least one but usually several of the following:

  • euphoric mood (excessively happy but may become angry or irritable)
  • high self-esteem
  • increased psychomotor activity
  • optimism
  • exuberant energy
  • increased goal-directed activity
  • diminished need to sleep
  • distractibility
  • talkativeness
  • racing thoughts
  • grandiosity
  • disinhibition
  • impaired insight
  • financial extravagance
  • increased risk-taking
  • high libido
  • sexual promiscuity

 

Here is how Julia A. Fast an author about Bipolar Disorder describes specific symptoms associated with Euphoric Mania.

“An extreme desire for:

  • sex with no thoughts of the consequences
  • spending with no thought of the cost
  • travel – no matter who you leave behind
  • creative projects where you stay up all night with an ‘amazing idea!’
  • quick results-  the manic person finds ‘slow’ people very annoying
  • talking with strangers

 

People with bi-polar euphoric mania also experience:

  • less need for sleep with no tiredness the next day
  • excessive ideas that just feel so wonderful they have to tell everyone about them!
  • a general sense of well being that is hard to describe unless you have experienced it!
  • inability to let others talk.”

 

A friend asked me about treatments for the manic phase of Bipolar Disorder? I found myself stumbling to answer because there are a variety of medications out there but not all of them work well for everyone. What works for one person may not work for another, and that’s why taking time to work with your doctor to find the right medication or combination of medications is critical. I’ve found a nice combination that is working well for me at the moment, but it has taken me more than five years and lots of trail and error to get to this point. The frustrating thing is that medications can work well for a while and then stop working. When they are working they help function and enjoy life more fully. When they fail to work, it just means that you need to go in and make adjustments to your medications with your doctor, and keep adjusting until you get back on track.

In some of the most recent studies, researchers have found that Lithium is highly effective for preventing relapses in mania. Combining Lithium with Depakote is also effective for many people. If someone is in an acute phase of mania, a combination of one of both of these mood stabilizers along with an antipsychotic can be effective in reducing symptoms quickly.

If you are experiencing a manic episode whether you feel euphoric and happy, or pressured, irritable, and short tempered, please contact your psychiatrist right away and get help. Manic episodes may feel good at the beginning but they usually end badly, and can destroy your finances, your health, and your relationships.

References:

Bipolar Disorders, Mixed States, Rapid Cycling and Atypical Forms, 2005, Edited by: Andreas Marnero, Frederick Goodwin,Cambridge University Press.

Julie A. Fast’s Bipolar Happens Blog

15 Responses to “What is Euphoric Mania?”

  1. GARY P says:

    I was reading BPMG and came across the term Euphoric Mania. The last 6 months, I have experienced 95% of the symptoms you described in your essay. During the last few months, I almost lost my apartment, my bank account remains in the negative and my relationship has been nothing but drama. All this time I have been thinking about it was associated with old age or just plan irresponsible,so has my family.

    You have educated me; but it also makes me sad to see that my Bipolar 1 has got worse and each day I am losing self control of my life. I am at ease as well; because I can now bring the matter to my doctor.

    Thank you so very much

    • Luann says:

      Hi Gary,
      So happy that you have identified your behaviors with the disorder and will now be able to get your life back in control and on the right track. The longer you go without treatment the worse the episodes become over time. It’s called the “kindling” effect. Best wishes to you.

  2. sherri says:

    I dunno if I’m bipolar but I’ve been obsessing over it for years recently found out my sister is she’s 26 I’m 21 I’m feeling extremely euphoric and want to do anything and everything and it seems weird becuz I’m diagnosed with severe depression and been super down for a while now and even earlier today now all a sudden my minds going wild I want to run up and down the street but I’m not in shape for that so I just pace the house and search online lol could this be anything else? I have a history of drug abuse but have been off drugs for awhile with the occasional slip. Could this just be related to that or something else?!

  3. Luann says:

    Hi sherri,
    That’s interesting that your sister has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I’d suggest getting an evaluation from a doctor. Since it does run in families and has a genetic component it makes sense for you to suspect that you might also have bipolar disorder.

    It would be hard for me to say one way or another whether your eneregy level and mind reeling is related to your past drug abuse or something else, but it sounds like it would give you some peace of mind to find out if you have bipolar disorder. There are lots of good treatment options and if you do have bipolar disorder catching it when you are young is good and makes for a much better longterm outcome. Best of wishes to you.

  4. terrance says:

    i agree the crash in the euphoria destroys alot of your previous good work.But, my meds work then they dont, just trying to find the balance where i feel good but not over medicated and can sleep properly and not be depressed.Thats a big problem, KNOWING the difference from euphoria to suicidal becuase it is such a vaste canyon everyone wants of course the upside,but theres a big cost when you get a little imbalanced,hope others understand what im talking about, right now i feel depresses, but would rather choose euphoria if it had no side effects.

    • Luann says:

      Hi terrance,
      I agree that finding the balance is so difficult. Sometimes it seems easy and other times changing meds and or lessening stress seems to do no good at all. Euphoria is an amazing feeling and very addictive. I think everyone would agree that it would be a great place to be all the time if it weren’t for the side effects. Side effects like ruining your relationships, spending all your money, doing excessive behaviors that are self destructive, and using bad judgement when you are convinced that you are doing everything just perfectly. It’s a tricky slippery slope.

  5. Euphoric maniac says:

    How would one go about inducing euphoric mania?

  6. David findley says:

    Hi,

    I have been experiencing prolonged periods of euphoria, primarily characterized by a physical ecstasy that can last through most of the day. I also have a tendency for grandiosity and have developed great work iin philosophy.

    And I do have periods of depression, but they are very mild. They do bot compare to the manic euphoria either in duration or in intensity — even remotely.

    I am almost feel blessed that I may ‘suffer’ such an awesome disorder — but I am still somewhat worried of long-term consequences. Can the symptoms progress? Reverse? Am I prone to some sort of long term damage?

    As it is, it would be foolish to take medication. But… I wonder if it is in my long term interest to consider it?

    Also, do you know the physiological and neurochemical triggers/causes?

    Thanks :O)

  7. trudy says:

    Our son recently went through depression and severe sleep deprivation. He tried to sleep and various over the counter aids but to no avail. After a week of work and sleep deprived he suddenly felt better and became manic. This is a first. He is 29 year old professional. in the early morning hours he started hypoventilating and shaking. Drove himself to ER and was evaluated and treated with a sedative. The psychologist through a 15 min. evaluation diagnosed him bipolar. She wanted him admitted but couldn’t because of insurance. three days later he developed paranoia and my husband cocerced him back to the ER where he was coerced again to admit himself to hospital. In three days on a mood stabilizer he improved but still some paranoia. Because of insurance most likely discharged in a day or two. His dad and I are very concerned even though his new psychiatrist and therapist will be close by. Since he is an adult, he may chose not to tell us the final diagnois and what drugs he is own. He wants to take ownership of his condition but is against taking drugs but is taking them now. He is very intelligent quit his job in the middle of the paranoia.

  8. Luna says:

    Hi! I wish you the best for 2015!

    I read for sometime now about bipolar disorders and hypomania and cyclothymia.

    I’m pretty sure am cyclothymic, more than hypomanic.

    My brain reaches the euphoric state fairly easily, the euphoria that I’m thinking I’ll fly, the kind of high you get with drugs but I get it with music, or even by looking at my partner’s eyes, and this is that tinglish feel that I think I might explode into little stars and then explode all over to smaller stars.

    So easily I can react with rage, or have a depressing episode.

    I’m not 100% manic nor 100% depressed.

    While talking to a good friend, about the euphoric feeling they said to me that they think it’s very diffictult to be achieved, and that I must be mistaken – to what I feel – cause just listening to a music track can’t make this feeling happen.

    What’s your opinion?

    Thank you very much for your time!

  9. Soonersfan says:

    I’m 100% always euphoric….every symptom listed on euphoria manic I possess …however I’m very successful and have never experienced what they call a ” crash” I’m not in debt, I have a good job that ive had a long time, I am absolutely 100% successful at every thing i attempt ….but I do have sex without thinking of consequences, take trips without telling pple an go alone, and I go to the store and buy all kinds of stuff I dont need lol and never think about the $$$$. I get along witg everyone I’m always positive and no matter whats going on I’m always up side even if someone flips me off while I’m driving, So my question is this am I weird?,am I normal? Or do I have an issue that hasnt been diagnosed? Oh, an i have tons of energy and work constantly as well as raise my 2 children alone, im a workaholic but when I hit the bed I sleep

  10. lora says:

    I have this and I am un able to take meds if you know of any please list so I may research them and in hopes to get help thank you I am asking for help and support form you is giving me name of meds that I may try

  11. Luann says:

    You write extremely well. I enjoyed reading you blog post. Keep writing.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] simply cease to be an individual. ‘I’ evaporate. The music lifts me utterly, and I am complete. Euphoria has become my essence. Three hours pass this […]


Leave a Reply