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What is the difference between bipolar disorder and depression?

Residents of Newark, New Jersey, may be vaguely familiar with the terms "bipolar" and "major depression," but not know exactly how to distinguish the two. Knowing the difference can be helpful for New Jersey residents, although it is important to remember that bipolar disorder and simple major depression can each qualify for a mental illness disability under the Social Security Administration's rules.

One can think of "bipolar" as a larger type of mental health disorder that includes "depression," although a person can suffer from depression without having bipolar disorder. A person who is experiencing depression will feel sad almost constantly and will not take much interest in daily activities.

Moreover, a New Jersey resident with depression will fee drained, unable to concentrate and may experience an interruption in sleeping or eating patterns. Although not every depressed person attempts suicide, thoughts of dying usually preoccupy them.

In addition to experiencing depression, a person who has bipolar disorder also will experience what psychologists call "mania." A person will tend to be very focused on their goals but may also get fixated on pleasure-seeking or on things that seem to be trivial. Someone in mania will move from thought to thought without much order and will also show a great deal of confidence, even to the extreme. They also may talk a lot and usually do not require a lot of sleep.

Although they are different, both depression and bipolar, in severe cases, can prevent a person from being able to work in gainful employment. In such cases, a person may be able to get Social Security disability benefits upon showing medical proof that, even with treatment, they are not able to work. Oftentimes, a qualified New Jersey Social Security attorney can provide invaluable help to those who are suffering from either bipolar or depression and need disability benefits.

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