A traumatic experience can stay with a person for a lifetime. In doing so, it can lead to several issues for this individual. For example, they may struggle to regulate their emotions, a condition known as emotional dysregulation. How are the two linked?
How Trauma and Emotional Dysregulation Are Connected
When a person suffers trauma they may not be able to control their feelings or how they respond emotionally to people and events. This trauma might be a one-time occurrence or it may be ongoing. People respond differently to trauma, with some people suffering from emotional dysregulation. Fortunately, treatments such as emdr for trauma can help.
What is Emotional Dysregulation?
When a person cannot manage their emotions in terms of intensity or response, mental health professionals diagnose them with emotional dysregulation. Often, this lack of control over emotions is the result of a lack of emotional validation from parents as they were growing up.
Emotional Dysregulation Symptoms
Individuals struggling with emotional dysregulation don’t process and regulate their emotional responses like most people do. They may experience feelings and wonder where they came from. They don’t know how to control them either. Symptoms might include impulsive behavior, difficulty in stressful situations, and crying for no apparent reason. These men and women are more at risk of addiction and may lack conflict resolution skills. Furthermore, they may engage in compulsive behaviors.
Emotional Dysregulation Risk Factors
Many things contribute to the development of emotional dysregulation. Trauma remains a leading cause, but it is not alone. The environment a person is raised in may play a role in the development of emotional dysregulation. Often, the parents suffer from emotional dysregulation and pass this on to their children. As this skill is learned, a child may struggle with emotional dysregulation as well.
Trauma and Emotional Dysregulation
When a child is exposed to trauma, they may not be able to control their emotions and feelings as they develop. Children between the ages of six and ten appear to be most at risk of developing this condition. However, an adult may no longer be able to control their emotions and feelings after they are exposed to trauma.
Complications Seen With This Disorder
Emotional dysregulation can lead to additional problems in a person’s life. For example, the individual might struggle to have and maintain intimate relationships. They may become jealous over little things and run their partner off. Anger issues can also lead to the dissolution of relationships.
Coping With These Emotions
Many people turn to drugs or alcohol when they cannot regulate their emotions. They do so to numb themselves or to avoid the feelings they are experiencing. This adds to the strain on their relationships. The person struggling with emotional dysregulation isn’t the only one affected.
Fortunately, help is available for those who struggle with emotional dysregulation. Some people find they benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy, as it helps them uncover and modify thoughts that hold them back. In addition, the therapy addresses any behavioral patterns that are detrimental to their well-being. A doctor might recommend talk therapy to help the patient learn to understand their emotions and process them in a healthy way. The patient might also benefit from trauma treatment. Work with a professional to find the treatment that is right for you for a better quality of life.