Bipolar Disorder also known as Manic Depression is a primary mood disorder. It is primarily concerned with mood swings in a person whereas Schizophrenia is a primary psychotic disorder which is not only related with the mood changes in a person but makes its effect in all the thinking process and activities of a person.
Bipolar disorder is a disease or illness which has extremes of mood changes, be it highly happy energetic or highly sad depression state. This illness causes so much frequent changes in moods that then it’s very difficult for such persons to be accepted in the world in the working field or in relations with the family or friends.
Whereas in Schizophrenia people suffer with psychotic disorders in which they are unable to think and behave properly or normally which creates its effect in all the thinking process and activities of a person.
In Bipolar Disorder there are revolving episodes of depression and mania which is considered to be a lifelong illness or disorder. The severity of mood changes diagnoses the type of disorder and they present with the severity.
Well in the earlier centuries of 1800s 1900s, there was nothing like Schizophrenia or Bipolar Disorder named with. That time it was only called insanity. At that time people who used to be disturbed, unbalanced, crazy or who used to very quickly change their moods or takes immediate decision were generally called as insane. Such bunches of people in the present world are grouped in different disorders including schizophrenia and manic depressive illness or bipolar disorder. In the late 19th century a German Psychiatrist with the name of Emile Kraepelin, after seeing and watching people when they first got sick over many years with insanity, was able to distinguish two groups from this big group of people suffering with insanity.
Among the 2 groups distinguished, one group was of people who were disturbed, confused, agitated in their behaviour & nature due to certain immediate happenings in their lives which brought extremes in their moods. But they used to get better in sometime. The other group was of people who got insane but didn’t seem to get fully recovered even after they calm down in their behaviour or nature of insanity. Such people instead of proceeding for recovery, used to worsen in their sickness over time. This distinguishness by the German Psychiatrist of the two disorders gave birth to the existence of Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder.
Schizophrenia symptoms includes disorder in the thinking and understanding or perception of a person. When the thoughts of a person are bizarre, unreal, illogical and he has perception of things which are not there in real life or he hear voices, see or feel things which are not there with any inspiration. Whereas, the major symptom of Bipolar Disorder or Manic-Depressive Illness is disturbances of mood which goes to extremes of happiness, sadness or anxiety.
Mood becomes wildly excited, overjoyed, and happy for no reason or beyond all the happenings or circumstances concerned. Similarly mood becomes profoundly depressed or sad without any solid reason.
So this is the explanation of the major difference between the 2 mental disorders named as Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder.