Loved ones often wonder how long a manic episode can last if it remains untreated. Generally speaking, an episode can last several weeks to several months. A visitor to the Bipolar Blog posted a comment indicating that her husband was experiencing a manic episode that lasted eight months and was still ongoing.

Eight months is certainly over the normal limit. Something usually happens before then to end the episode – the person receives treatment (possibly through a hospital stay), the episode simply ends, or the person becomes physically exhausted.

If an episode lasts more than a few months, it generally indicates that something else could be fueling it, such as the following:

  • Drugs¬†
  • Alcohol
  • Surreptitious antidepressants (sounds weird I know – but possible)
  • Something related to physical illness

 

 


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    Last reviewed: 17 Oct 2008

APA Reference
Fink, C. (2008). How Long Can a Manic Episode Last?. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 27, 2015, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/bipolar/2008/10/how-long-can-a-manic-episode-last/

 

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Candida Fink, M.D. and Joe Kraynak are authors of
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