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The Association between Recreational Drug use and Hypomania

Solanki, Anita (2010) The Association between Recreational Drug use and Hypomania. Manchester Metropolitan University. (Unpublished)


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Previous research exploring the domains of hypomania has found that hypomanic personality traits have been shown to predict the onset of manic episodes along with substance abuse and potentially harmful reward related activities. Missing the diagnosis of past hypomania, and thus of bipolar disorder, is common such is the suggestion that substance misuse precedes the onset of either of these disorders beyond diagnostic criteria. This study therefore examined if the elevated risk of hypomania is associated with frequent recreational drug use patterns. Participants were recruited via random sampling from all MMU campuses (N=100). An amendment of the Hypomania Checklist (HCL-32) was used to take measure of the symptoms of hypomania in addition to questions regarding the frequency and types of illicit drugs used. Illicit drug use was reported by 75% of the respondents. A significant relationship was found between both the frequency of drug use and hypomania, and the diversity of drug use and hypomania. Both these revealed a moderate positive correlation. Only the frequency of the drug GHB proved to have an effect on higher scores on the HCL-32. High scoring participants of the HCL-32 are most likely to encounter hypomanic effects produced by the use of recreational drugs specifically those using drugs frequently and of a more diverse range.

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