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bipolar disorder

Bipolar Disorder Test

Do you think you may be bipolar? While only a mental health professional can accurately diagnose bipolar disorder, this free online quiz can help you to identify symptoms.

Who should take this bipolar disorder test?

The symptoms of bipolar disorder are far more intense than ordinary mood swings and can create disruptions in your daily life and relationships. Your mood can swing from highs of mania to the lows of depression, and trigger pronounced changes in your energy levels and how you think, feel, and behave.

A manic episode can leave you talking a mile a minute, sleeping very little, behaving recklessly, picking fights, or even experiencing delusions. At the other extreme, bipolar depression can cause you to move and speak very slowly, sleep more than usual, feel restless, guilty, and irritable, or even lose touch with reality.  

However, bipolar symptoms can also vary widely from one person to another, often depending on the type of bipolar disorder. While some people are more prone to either manic or depressive episodes, for example, others experience both equally often. Similarly, some people can experience far more severe and more frequent mood swings than others.

The following bipolar disorder test is based on the Mood Disorder Questionnaire (MDQ) designed to identify mood symptoms often found in bipolar disorder. It can be a useful screening tool for adults and adolescents aged 12 and above. While no test can replace a medical diagnosis, taking this short quiz may help you decide if you should speak to a mental health professional for an accurate diagnosis.

Take the bipolar disorder test

Answer the following 15 questions, choosing the most appropriate response. It's not just your total score that's important, but also the specific questions you answer with a “Yes”.

Am I bipolar?

Has there ever been a period of time when you were not your usual self and:

  1. You felt so good or so hyper that other people thought you were not your normal self, or you were so hyper that you got into trouble?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  2. You were so irritable that you shouted at people or started fights or arguments?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  3. You felt much more self-confident than usual?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  4. You got much less sleep than usual and found you didn’t really miss it?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  5. You were much more talkative or spoke faster than usual?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  6. Thoughts raced through your head or you couldn’t slow your mind?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  7. You were so easily distracted by things around you that you had trouble concentrating or staying on track?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  8. You had much more energy than usual?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  9. You were much more active or did many more things than usual?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  10. You were much more social or outgoing than usual—for example, you telephoned friends in the middle of the night?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  11. You were much more interested in sex than usual?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  12. You did things that were unusual for you or that other people might have thought were excessive, foolish, or risky?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  13. Spending money got you or your family into trouble?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  14. If you checked YES to more than one of the above, have several of these ever happened during the same period of time?
    • Yes (1 point)
    • No (0 points)
  15. How much of a problem did any of these cause you—like being unable to work, having family, money, or legal troubles, or getting into arguments or fights?
    • No problem (0 points)
    • Minor problem (1 point)
    • Moderate problem (2 points)
    • Serious problem (3 points)

Interpreting your score:

If you scored 7 points or more for questions 1 to 13 AND 1 point (“Yes”) for question 14 AND 2 or 3 points (moderate or serious problem) for question 15: You likely have bipolar disorder.

If you answered “Yes” to questions 3, 4, 8, 9: You may not recognize any significant negative affects of feeling energetic and extraverted, which itself can be an indicator of bipolar disorder.

If you answered “Yes” to questions 1, 2, 6, 7, 12, 13: It can also indicate bipolar disorder or another mental health issue such as a personality disorder, PTSD, or generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).

This questionnaire is not intended to replace professional diagnosis.

Source: The Mood Disorder Questionnaire (MDQ)

Factors that can impact your score

When considering your answers, it’s important to remember that factors other than bipolar disorder can also cause changes in mood and energy levels. Certain medical conditions or the use of alcohol, drugs, or prescription medications can also trigger similar experiences.

  • Using substances such as cocaine, ecstasy, and amphetamines can trigger manic episodes.
  • Medications such as antidepressants, anti-anxiety drugs, appetite suppressants, corticosteroids, over-the-counter cold medicine, caffeine, and thyroid medications can also cause mania.
  • The use of alcohol and tranquilizers can initiate depression symptoms.
  • Other medical conditions such as hypothyroidism, Addison's disease, and Cushing's syndrome can also affect your mood and energy levels.
  • Other factors such as sleep deprivation, seasonal changes, caffeine, vitamin B12 deficiency, and stress can also impact mood and energy.

Getting an accurate bipolar disorder diagnosis

Making an accurate diagnosis of bipolar disorder can be difficult even for medical professionals. In many cases, it can take numerous consultations to correctly identify bipolar disorder and decide on the best treatment plan. You can't diagnose the disorder on your own and the Mood Disorder Questionnaire (MDQ) is just one type of screening tool.

The symptoms of bipolar disorder can often be difficult to distinguish from other mental health conditions, such as major depression, ADHD, and borderline personality disorder. Therefore, it's vital that you see a mental health professional to make an accurate diagnosis. Try to find a psychiatrist with experience treating bipolar disorder. Read: Bipolar Disorder Symptoms, Causes, Types, and Diagnosis.

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Authors: Lawrence Robinson and Melinda Smith, M.A.

    Get more help

    Hotlines and support

    In the U.S.: Call the NAMI HelpLine at 1-800-950-6264 or find DBSA Chapters/Support Groups in your area. (Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance)

    UK: Call the peer support line at 0333 323 3880 and leave a message for a return call or Find a Support Group near you. (Bipolar UK)

    Australia: Call the Sane Helpline at 1800 187 263 or find a local Support Group. (Bipolar Australia)

    Canada: Visit Finding Help for links to provincial helplines and support groups. (Mood Disorders Society of Canada)

    India: Call the Vandrevala Foundation Helpline (India) at 1860 2662 345 or 1800 2333 330.

    In other countries: Search HelpGuide's Directory of International Mental Health Helplines.

    Last updated: January 9, 2023