Dennis Ombachi On Bipolar Disorder Diagnosis, Passion For Cooking

Kenyans Rugby sevens player Dennis Ombachi has given insights into his struggle with bipolar disorder.

The 31 year old was diagnosed in 2018, after struggles with extreem mood swings and attempted suicide.

In a BBC Sports Africa interview Ombachi pointed out the disorder is treatable.

“Lots of us go through this, and not many of us are willing to seek help,” He said.

“So for me, it’s just to tell them it’s treatable.” He added.

Bipolar disorder diagnosis

According to Dennis Ombachi his mood would suddenly dip and he would find himself losing interest in training, craving solitude or crying in the shower after matches.

He then confided in his national team coach Innocent Simiyu, who understood and told him to seek help.

Over the years his mental health worsened, and at some point, Ombachi tried to take his own life but was found in time by his three sisters.

“It was actually starting to affect my personal life, my friendship with the mother of my kids and everything,” he said.”

“I was first diagnosed with depression, which turned out to be a misdiagnosis, and then I was admitted later on for around two weeks in a psychiatric institution. And that’s where my psychiatrist diagnosed me with bipolar and I think that’s where my journey started.”

“For me taking a break was just to have a grasp of my mental health, see how it’s taking it and then also try and set up myself outside life in sports and see how it goes. So far so good,” he said.

Dennis Ombachi Passion for cooking

After taking a break from top level sports, Ombachi found coping in cooking.

“My coping mechanism was the internet, and it is where I developed my passion for cooking,” he said.

“For me it was cooking and woodwork. And those are some of my hobbies that used to see me through my sort of depressive patterns.

So I found a way of making the most out of the unfortunate situation.” He added.