Symptoms of Adjustment Disorders

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Adjustment disorders symptoms vary from person to person. The symptoms you have may be different from those of someone else with an adjustment disorder. But for everyone, symptoms of an adjustment disorder begin within three months of a stressful event in your life.

Emotional Symptoms of Adjustment Disorders

Signs and symptoms of adjustment disorder may affect how you feel and think about yourself or life, including:

  • Sadness
  • Hopelessness
  • Lack of enjoyment
  • Crying spells
  • Nervousness
  • Jitteriness
  • Anxiety, which may include separation anxiety
  • Worry
  • Desperation
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Thoughts of suicide

Behavioral Symptoms of Adjustment Disorders

Signs and symptoms of adjustment disorder may affect your actions or behavior, such as:

  • Fighting
  • Reckless driving
  • Ignoring bills
  • Avoiding family or friends
  • Performing poorly in school or at work
  • Skipping school
  • Vandalizing property

Length of Symptoms

How long you have symptoms of an adjustment disorder also can vary:

  • 6 months or less (acute). In these cases, symptoms should ease once the stressor is removed. Brief professional treatment may help symptoms disappear.
  • More than 6 months (chronic). In these cases, symptoms continue to bother you and disrupt your life. Professional treatment may help symptoms improve and prevent the condition from continuing to get worse.

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