Adaptive Disorder Symptoms, causes and treatment

Adaptive Disorder Symptoms, causes and treatment

We are searching data for your request:

Forums and discussions:
Manuals and reference books:
Data from registers:
Wait the end of the search in all databases.
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.

The adaptive disorder It is a psychological condition characterized by the union of a group of symptoms that appear when a person is experiencing an intense period of stress due to contextual changes. Is a excessive and abnormal reaction by an individual to a stressful event that causes problems in different aspects of his life.


  • 1 When Adaptive Disorder May Appear
  • 2 Symptoms of adaptive disorder
  • 3 Causes of adaptive disorder
  • 4 Treatment of adaptive disorder

When Adaptive Disorder May Appear

These changes can be of a different nature and represent a great imbalance for people's emotional balance. Some examples of situations that can generate this psychological disorder can be:

  • A move to a different home or geographic location
  • A break or divorce
  • The death of a loved one
  • Diseases or health problems of one's own or loved ones
  • Economic problems
  • Natural disasters or accidents
  • Family problems
  • Problems in the educational context

It is not easy to predict if after such a stressful situation the person could develop this disorder. While some may recover and continue their lives without experiencing this condition, other people may not. Lack of previous coping skills, the way in which people have learned to deal with stress and anxiety, as well as social skills, will be very influential in developing this disorder.

Although this syndrome may resemble Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)There are some differences between the two: while PTSD usually appears one month after the traumatic event and its prolongation is very long, the symptoms of the adaptive disorder develop during the occurrence of the stressful event, or immediately after experiencing it. These do not usually last more than six months, although the period may be prolonged if the stressful event continues in our lives.

Adaptive disorder can occur at the same time with other disorders such as depression or generalized anxiety disorder.

Symptoms of adaptive disorder

The symptoms of adaptive disorder can change from one person to another. In adolescents and children, these are usually more focused on behavioral problems such as fighting, absence from school or other behavioral problems. Adults, however, tend to experience more emotional and cognitive symptoms, such as sadness or anxiety.

Some of the general symptoms that occur in this disorder are:

Cognitive and emotional symptoms

  • Feelings of sadness and / or hopelessness
  • Crying and frequent crying
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Anxiety
  • Excessive worry
  • Agitation

Physical symptoms

  • Headache or Stomach
  • Palpitations
  • Lack of energy and tiredness
  • Tremors
  • Changes in appetite

Behavioral symptoms

  • Isolation from other people or social activities
  • Problematic or challenging behaviors (aggressive driving, vandalism ...)
  • Self destructive behavior

Causes of adaptive disorder

Although the main cause of the appearance of this disorder is experiencing a stressful factorThere are some factors that will promote its development to a greater or lesser extent. Not all people who experience a stressful event will react in the same way. That is why some conditions may have an important role, these may be genetic factors, low development of coping skills, unfavorable economic conditions, great susceptibility to stress or problems in social skills.

Adaptive Disorder Treatment

In order to eliminate the symptoms and make the patient return to normal life, there are effective treatments that can be carried out, always by the hand of psychological health professionals.

Many people who suffer or have suffered from this disorder have managed to recover completely through psychological intervention, which is why it is very important to seek help and put themselves in the hands of a good professional.

A highly recommended treatment is psychotherapy. Specifically, the cognitive behavioral therapy It is a treatment that is usually carried out normally in these cases and that helps people identify the patterns of thought and behavior that keep them in a negative situation, to replace these behaviors and thoughts with more adaptive ones, as well as face those fears or concerns that kept them.

Adding this therapy with the Learning relaxation techniques, group therapies, can also be very helpful in these cases. Family therapies can also be very useful, especially when the patient is a child or teenager. Occasionally, drug treatment may also be prescribed to alleviate those symptoms related to anxiety or depression.

Links of interest

Adjustment disorder //

Understanding adjustment disorders. //