Do your friends consider you “dramatic?”
You may be experiencing emotional dysregulation.
If you’re easily frustrated, saddened, or angered, you may want to explore what exactly causes emotional dysregulation. Hearing friends and family call you “dramatic” is frustrating in and of itself, but it’s up to you to explore emotional dysregulation and seek solutions if needed.
Reading articles and discussing the possibility with a professional will give you a better understanding of yourself, which is what you need to start coping if needed.
Let’s take a look at emotional dysregulation.
What Is Emotional Dysregulation?
If you are suffering from emotional dysregulation, a mood disorder, you are the person who constantly starts trouble, picks fights or gets easily irritated. You may also come across as feeling entitled or thinking that you are better than others. You overreact to situations that don’t seem to bother others. You can go from zero to rage in a few seconds and can hold a grudge for a long time. You rarely take responsibility for your actions and find blaming others is easier.
It is important to note that you are misunderstood. Because people just think you are emotionally overreactive or aggressive, they are not taking the time to realize your responses may be a symptom of a connected mental illness such as anxiety or depression. It may also be directly related to attention deficit disorder, borderline disorder or post-traumatic disorder.
The causes of emotional dysregulation are not completely known. Some researchers believe it is genetic, while many others claim it is acquired by living in an unhealthy environment as a child. They believe either the parents had personality disorders themselves or abuse, either physical or verbal, was prevalent in the home.
Let’s take a look at three common mental health conditions that can cause emotional dysregulation.
1. ADD and Emotional Dysregulation
If you have attention deficit disorder of any kind, then you know your emotions can be unstable.
Even though emotional dysregulation is not officially part of the definition of attention deficit disorders, it should be. When a person with attention deficit disorder is trying to cope with the inability to stay focused, having too much energy, and impulsiveness, it is natural they will also have problems regulating their emotions. They get frustrated when they can’t complete a task or think before they act and what happens? They explode with frustration.
2. Borderline Personality Disorder and Emotional Dysregulation
Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a mental health condition characterized by emotional dysregulation.
If you find yourself struggling with mood swings, impulsive behavior, and rocky relationships with friends and family, you may have BPD. This condition can make it difficult to maintain a job, romantic relationships, and a positive image of yourself.
In extreme cases, it can even lead to self-destructive behavior, including self-harm or suicide.
Learn more about Borderline Personality Treatment.
3. PTSD and Emotional Dysregulation
Most everyone has experienced some type of traumatic symptom in their lifetime. Some traumas can include the death of a loved one, a car accident or surviving a natural disaster. There are other traumatic events that can be damaging to your emotional health and lead to post-traumatic stress disorder.
Some traumas can include the death of a loved one, a car accident or surviving a natural disaster. There are other traumatic events that can be damaging to your emotional health and lead to post-traumatic stress disorder. With this emotionally dysregulating disorder, certain sounds, smells, and even people can trigger avoidance symptoms. These symptoms include having a hard time sleeping, being startled easily, anger outbursts, or being constantly on edge or tense. All of these symptoms make it very difficult to regulate emotions.
With post-traumatic stress disorder, you can feel a range of emotions all at once, making it hard to distinguish between them and causing you to overreact or act out in a negative way, such as having an outburst. You may feel anxiety, guilt, anger, sadness and even gratefulness all at the same time. This is confusing for anyone, much less for someone who has been through a life-threatening situation or any other trauma.
There are ways to regulate your emotions.
Learn more about PTSD treatment.
Regulating Emotions with Dialectical Therapy
They both focus on how your thoughts, feelings, and actions affect each other, either negatively or positively.
There are many suggestions to help you regulate your emotions with attention deficit disorder. Specifically, mindfulness techniques used in dialectical behavioral therapy. In addition, having support nearby. Your support system can include family, friends and a therapist that you can touch base with daily if necessary. Sticking to a solid routine will help immensely. Your routine should include getting the right amount of sleep, healthy eating habits, exercise, avoiding the use of substances and taking your medication every day as scheduled.
If you have borderline personality disorder, you can regulate your emotions.
Dialectical therapy can help teach you mindfulness techniques, emotional regulation, and how to handle stressful situations. Medications may also help you in your management of your borderline personality disorder. It will be up to you and your therapist to determine if medication will benefit your other therapies. Dialectical therapy can also help you manage your responses to situations rather than just trying to escape them when distressed.
If you have post-traumatic stress disorder, you can learn to regulate your emotions by participating in dialectical therapy and working with trauma specialists. It is best to find a therapist who specializes in your area of trauma, or who has even been through what you are going through and succeeded in their journey. For example, if your trauma is centered on your combat time in the war, seek a therapist who has also been in combat. If your trauma involves sexual abuse, seek a therapist who specializes in that area.
Emotional dysregulation can be reversed if you make the long-term commitment to improving your responses to negative situations. Through dialectical therapy, you can learn many techniques to help you regulate your emotions and have successful relationships with others and with yourself.