Bipolar Brain Fog: Who Shoved the Cotton Candy Inside My Head?

Is there a clinical term for “brain fog” ???

I’m peeking back in, after a week or so of having my head filled with cotton candy. At least, that’s what it felt like.

Sometimes, this is what my brain feels like. I wonder if it’s just as delicious?

I know that brain fog is not uncommon in those of us with bipolar and unipolar depression. I’ve had episodes of it for as long as I can remember.

And I hate it.

Now, I certainly have my knuckle-headed moments, but I’m really not a complete derp. I was blessed with common sense. And critical thinking skills? I has them. I even have a fairly expansive vocabulary.

Until I don’t.

Today is the first day in a week that I haven’t struggled to find my words. When brain fog sets in, I  stare blankly at the person I’m talking to, and shuffle through the clutter in my brain, to come up with words like, “letterhead” and “library” and “hardware store.”

When brain fog sets in, everything slows waaaaaay down.

and it feels like I’m stuck in mud.

Logically, I know that these neurocognitive symptoms are episodic, and that they will pass. It’s just very frustrating when it happens. And I don’t have any strategies for warding it off.

Hell, I don’t even know why  it happens.

So here’s my question:

Does anyone know what causes this phenomenon?

Is there some neurotransmitter misfiring going on in my brain when I’m leaning towards the depressive pole?

Or does mania (even in small amounts) kill brain cells?

Am I actually making myself dumber?

And uh…do they make a pill for that?

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One thought on “Bipolar Brain Fog: Who Shoved the Cotton Candy Inside My Head?

  1. Yes, THIS. This is so familiar. I don’t know if there’s a real term for it other than “brain fog” though. That’s a good enough description for me.

    Along with all the things you mentioned, the part where I get easily confused and can’t navigate roads very well and yes, am just plain S-L-O-W, that’s what makes it so frustrating to me.

    I think there has to be some kind of neurotransmitter issue, because it’s as if things aren’t firing properly, there are no chemicals to transport the signals, etc. I literally feel like my head is empty, not just of thoughts and feelings, but of the substrate to move them around.

    I dunno. Anyway, it sucks and I completely sympathize.

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