The International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF) in collaboration with the Asian Network of Bipolar Disorder (ANBD) and the International Society for Bipolar Disorders (ISBD) have joined together to create World Bipolar Day to raise awareness to bipolar conditions and eliminate social stigma to improve sensitivity towards the illness. The date of the 30 March has been chosen as it’s Van Gogh’s birthday and he was posthumously diagnosed as having a bipolar condition.
Bipolar disorder is a mood disorder, formerly known as manic depression. It can cause unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks. A person suffering with bipolar disorder can experience mood swings from one extreme to the other – crashing lows of depression and dizzying highs of mania.
It’s estimated that the global prevalence of bipolar disorder is between 1-2% and has been said to be as high as 5% and, according to the World Health Organization, is the 6th leading case of disability in the world. Organisations such as the AND, IBPF and ISBD are supporting work down to investigate the causes of the illness, better treatments and methods for diagnosis, genetic and biological causes and strategies for living efficiently with the disorder.
How can you get involved?
You can raise awareness of bipolar disorder by helping to make the topic of mental health trend on social media for the day. Participate on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter by using the hashtags: #MyBipolarFuelsMyPassion4 and #WorldBipolarDay. IBPF will be sharing photos and videos of people’s stories and thoughts throughout the day when posts are tagged or @mention IBPF.
If you wish to seek counselling, support, treatment, help or further information about understanding bipolar disorder and raising awareness you can find a full list of registered bipolar charities in our directory.