The ciclotimia (cyclothymic disorder) is related to changes in the mood of a person. It is also known as manic-depressive psychosis and is considered a mild form of bipolar disorder located between bipolar I and II disorder.


What is cyclothymia?

Cyclothymia or cyclothymic disorder is a mood disorder that manifests itself with several alternating episodes of hypomania and moderate depression that can be accompanied by anxiety, without becoming a major depressive case. It is caused by biological changes in the nervous system , but there are treatments to reduce its symptoms and help the patient to have a stable mood. It was previously known as manic-depressive psychosis and is located between bipola I and II disorder, but it is considered the most harmless bipolar disorder and its duration can take years or a lifetime if it is not treated in time.


Worldwide, it is present between 0.4 and 1% of the world’s population. The rate is the same in men and women, but it is women who most frequently seek treatment for this type of disorder so that it does not evolve into a more severe form of bipolarity. Many couples can be affected by cyclothymia as it is a chronic disorder that can last for years or a lifetime.


According to statistics, it begins between late adolescence and early adulthood. Adults are diagnosed after symptoms are evident for two years . In the case of children, they are diagnosed after one year.

Characteristics of cyclothymia

It manifests itself with the following characteristics:

  • It is a chronic disorder.
  • Presence of frequent episodes of hypomania with or without irritation.
  • Presence of episodes of depression alternately with episodes of hypomania.
  • Presence of anxiety episodes.
  • It is a mild type of bipolarity.
  • It is caused by biological changes in the nervous system

Types of bipolar disorders and cyclothymia

It is one of the types of mild bipolar disorder. In the categories of bipolar disorders we can mention the following:

  • Cyclothymia
  • Type I bipolar disorder
  • Type II bipolar disorder
  • Unspecified bipolar disorder
  • Rapid Cycle Bipolar Disorder

Diagnosis of cyclothymia disorder

For a doctor or specialist in the area to determine a case of cyclothymia and that it is not a case of bipolar I or II disorder, or another condition, it is necessary for the patient to undergo various physical and psychological examinations and tests that take into account elements like:

  • Blood pressure
  • The functioning of the lungs.
  • The functioning of the thyroid.
  • The blood
  • The urine
  • Show whether there is alcohol or drug use.
  • Psychological evaluations to study the thoughts, feelings and behaviors of the patient.

All these examinations and tests carried out on a physical and psychological level, will allow the doctor or specialist in this area to determine with the help of the patient’s family and friends if he suffers from a cyclothymia disorder and what could be the most indicated treatment to overcome this disorder.


The causes of cyclothymia can be:

  • Of genetic origin. Especially in the case of twins.
  • For paricardial reasons such as difficulties in socializing, vital events or living conditions.
  • By contexts of people focused on achieving goals or avoiding depression.


Among the most obvious symptoms of cyclothymia we can mention two very marked types, depressive and hypomanic .

Of the depressive symptoms we can mention the following:

  • Irritability
  • Sleep disorders
  • Feelings of sadness, emptiness, and hopelessness
  • Desires to cry for no reason
  • Difficulties concentrating
  • Restlessness
  • Fatigue
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Others

Of the hypomanic symptoms we can mention the following:

  • Agitation and irritability
  • Exaggerated optimism
  • Accelerated thinking
  • Excessive physical activity
  • Increased desire to achieve goals
  • Hyperactivity
  • Emotional instability
  • Search for strong emotions
  • Impulsiveness
  • Irresponsibility
  • Talking more than usual
  • Others

Treatment of cyclothymia

Treatment includes the use of drugs to stabilize mood and antidepressants with or without benzodiazepines. It is also necessary to apply psychotherapy techniques to reduce or eliminate episodes of this disorder.

Similarly, some treatments for bipolar disorder have been used in cases of cyclothymia that include cognitive-behavioral, rational-emotional, and client-centered therapies to treat patients with cyclothymia.

Other specialists recommend strategies to maintain stable sleep patterns, avoid drug and alcohol use, walk 10 minutes daily, and use psychotherapy to create a routine that helps stabilize moods.

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