Mental disorders often surface during adolescence. While the reasons are not entirely clear, experts suspect that rapid brain development may be the cause. Prevention and early intervention are keys to successful treatment. Therefore, identifying childhood risk factors can allow physicians to screen for mental health problems before they become difficult to treat.
Bipolar disorder is a physiologically demonstrable mental illness – the condition can lead to reduced volume in certain areas of the brain, especially with no treatment. It has been reported in over 75 studies that bipolar is linked to cognitive dysfunction, like poor verbal memory, struggle to maintain focus, poor executive functioning and reduced information processing speed. The question is whether these negative outcomes put a person at increased risk for developing dementia later on?