Inability to Regulate Emotions: Symptoms & Signs

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

The inability to regulate emotions can be a feature of psychotic disorders, mood disorders, and other mental-health conditions. People suffering from psychosis may have an altered perception of reality that may affect their regulation of emotions, and those suffering from bipolar disorder or depression may also report a loss of control over their emotions. Problems controlling emotions can also occur in relation to brain damage or disorders. These symptoms can be accompanied by other psychiatric symptoms or physical symptoms if they are related to a medical condition. The inability to regulate emotions is common in young children, but when present to an extreme degree, it may indicate an abnormality such as an emotional or behavior disorder.

REFERENCE:

Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/16/2017

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