Do you have an emotional control dysfunction?

According to psychologists, there are many reasons for suffering from a disorder of control over the management of one’s emotions, with the typical manifestation being a person’s inability to control his emotions. People with this manifestation are usually people with mood disorders, cognitive disorders, people who have experienced traumatic brain injury.

What is emotional dysregulation?

Emotional dysregulation is a mental health symptom related to difficulty controlling your emotions and how you act on them. To those around you, your emotions and reactions may seem disproportionate to what you are reacting to. It is similar to and closely related to executive dysfunction.

What does an emotional outburst of emotional dysregulation look like?

This emotional outburst manifests itself strongly, this neurological condition often affects people who have had pre-existing signs or suffered brain injuries in the past. Some people associated with mental health illnesses such as Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) also experience this emotional instability.

Signs of emotional dysregulation include:
  • Major depression
  • Anxiety
  • High levels of shame and anger
  • Self-harm
  • Excessive substance use
  • High-risk sexual behavior
  • Extreme perfectionism
  • Conflicts in interpersonal relationships
  • Eating disorders
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempts

Causes of emotional dysregulation

There are many reasons that are thought to lead to an inability to control your emotions, experts say that when you experience emotional dysregulation, the ability of certain neurotransmitters to act as “emotional brakes” decreases, causing you to fall into a prolonged “fight or flight” response. This leaves the prefrontal brain – the part of the brain responsible for regulating emotions – essentially shut down during times of heightened stress.

Several different reasons why a person develops a disorder of emotional dysregulation:

  • Childhood trauma is the sad events experienced in the first years of a person’s life. This is considered the most important stage of human development
  • Child neglect: as a form of abuse from caregivers to deprivation of basic needs, including lack of adequate supervision, health care, clothing or housing, as well as physical and emotional needs, social, educational and other safety.
  • Traumatic brain injury. Brain caused by external dysfunction, usually a strong blow to the head.
  • Chronic low degree of disabling. This happens when a person’s thoughts and feelings are rejected, ignored, or judged.


Mental health conditions that can cause emotional dysregulation

People controlling or regulating their emotions on a daily basis are thought to be habitual, while for others, emotional reactions are automatic. Associated symptoms include:
  • Being overwhelmed by emotions
  • Feeling afraid to express emotions
  • Feeling angry, but not knowing why
  • Feeling out of control
  • Abusing drugs or alcohol to hide or numb emotions
For people with mood or anxiety disorders, there are symptoms that require medical treatment such as:
  • It feels like life is no longer worth living
  • Feeling like you want to hurt yourself
  • Hearing voices or seeing things others tell you that aren’t there
  • Loss of consciousness or feeling as if you are about to faint

For people with neurological diseases (PBA – Pseudobulbar) or those who have experienced brain injury. Uncontrollable bouts of crying, laughing or tantrums are the main symptoms of this condition, with manifestations such as:
  • Stroke
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Brain tumor
  • Amnesia
  • Brain injury
  • Multiple sclerosis

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