Definition – Ultradian Cycling (aka Ultra-Rapid Cycling)
Relating to or exhibiting periodic physiological activity that occurs more than once every 24 hours. (source found here)
This has been our life as of late. PDog is the epitome of ultradian cycling these days. On one particular day he cycled at least twice in on hour. It’s crazy to watch too. He’ll go from angry/raging to super low depressed right back to hyper-manic in less than a half hour, then start the cycle all over again.
I did some research on the subject and found that this phenomena is more often found in pediatric bipolar disorder, though some argue that it actually signals the effects of a different disorder (such as borderline personality disorder) I however, feel this is a very real issue. Something PDog experiences on a fairly regular basis. Though it’s not always the case. His cycling can occur anywhere between 30 minutes to 3 weeks. This is the part that confuses me.
How is it possible to be so unpredictable? I can tell you one thing, it definitely makes parenting quite difficult. Not knowing what’s going to happen next is like parenting a time bomb. If I step on it just the right way, BOOM! It explodes in my face. Then a half hour later it will piece itself together as though it never existed, but I know it’s still there. Ready to go off again at any time.
Have you had experience with ultradian cycling? Has your child? I’d love to hear how others deal with this issue. Or do you think it’s not a bonified issue, just the a sign that something more is going on?