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Mixed Episode Symptoms

A mixed episode (DSM-IV) is not a disorder itself, but rather is a description of a component of a specific type of bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder is characterized by a swing in mood, usually over the course of weeks or months at a time, between manic (or hypomanic) episodes and depressive episodes.

A mixed episode is defined by meeting the diagnostic criteria for both a manic episode as well as a major depressive episode nearly every day for at least a full week.

Like most mental disorders, a mixed episode must be severe enough to cause distress or impairment in social, occupational, education, or other important functioning and is not better accounted for by the physiological effects of substance use or abuse (alcohol, drugs, medications) or a general medical condition.

Mixed Episode Usage in the DSM-5

The term “Mixed Episode” is no longer used in the updated Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). As of 2013, such episodes are considered a “specifier” of bipolar disorder. See updated “mixed features specifier” criteria.

Learn more about Bipolar Disorder

 

This post has been updated according to DSM-5.

 


John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

Dr. John Grohol is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Psych Central. He is an author, researcher, and expert in mental health online, and has been writing about online behavior, mental health and psychology issues since 1995. Dr. Grohol has a Master's degree and doctorate in clinical psychology from Nova Southeastern University. Dr. Grohol sits on the editorial board of the journal Computers in Human Behavior and is a founding board member of the Society for Participatory Medicine. You can learn more about Dr. John Grohol here.

APA Reference
Grohol, J. (2020). Mixed Episode Symptoms. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 29, 2020, from https://psychcentral.com/disorders/mixed-episode-symptoms/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 27 Jun 2020 (Originally: 17 May 2016)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 27 Jun 2020
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.