Bipolar disorder (known in the past as “manic depression”) is a mental health condition characterised by periods of extreme low mood and periods of extreme elevated mood or “mania”.
If you have already been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, it is important to be aware that pregnancy and early parenthood are high risk times, and to work with your doctor to make sure your illness is appropriately managed.
Some women who have not been diagnosed experience their first episode of bipolar disorder during the perinatal period. Being familiar with the symptoms of the illness will help you recognise it and get help early if you need it. This is especially important if you have a family history of bipolar disorder.