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Adjustment Disorder

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What are the characteristics associated with an adjustment disorder? Athealth.com:"A person with adjustment disorder often experiences feelings of depression or anxiety or combined depression and anxiety. As a result, that person may act out behaviorally against the "rules and regulations" of family, work, or society. In some people, an adjustment disorder may manifest itself in such behaviors as skipping school, unexpected fighting, recklessness, or legal problems. Other people, however, instead of acting out, may tend to withdraw socially and isolate themselves during their adjustment problems. Still others may not experience behavioral disturbances, but will begin to suffer from physical illness. If someone is already suffering from a medical illness, that condition may worsen during the time of the adjustment disorder. People in the midst of adjustment disorders often do poorly in school or at work. Very commonly they begin to have more difficulty in their close, personal relationships."
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Adjustment disorder (AD), Emedicine.com:"Adjustment disorder (AD) is a stress-related, short-term, nonpsychotic disturbance. Persons with AD are often viewed as disproportionately overwhelmed or overly intense in their responses to given stimuli. The disorder is time-limited, and symptoms lessen upon removal of the stressor or when new adaptation occurs. AD is considered one of the subthreshold disorders, which are less well defined and share characteristics of other diagnostic groups. Subthreshold disorders fall between defined disorders and problem level (V Code) diagnoses (Strain, 1998). Subthreshold disorders allow for the "classification of early or temporary states when the clinical picture is vague and indiscreet and yet the morbid state is more than expected in a normal reaction" (Strain, 1998). Because of insufficient behavioral criteria for patients with AD, reliability and validity of this disorder remain problematic."
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Adjustment Disorder, Internet Mental Health:"Onset and Course By definition, Adjustment Disorder begins within 3 months of onset of a stressor and lasts no longer than 6 months after the stressor or its consequences have ceased. Adjustment Disorder frequently presents as occupational or social impairment. Adjustment Disorder may increase the risk of suicide attempts and suicide. Adjustment Disorder may actually represent an initial mild episode of what later will return as a more severe mental disorder (e.g., Major Depressive Disorder)."


Adjustment Disorder, Causes, incidence, and risk factors, Medline Plus:"Symptoms of adjustment disorder typically begin within three months of the identifiable stressor and usually do not last longer than six months. Adults often develop adjustment disorder related to marital or financial problems. In adolescents, common stressors include school problems, family conflict, or sexuality issues. Other stressors for people of any age include the death of a loved one, general life changes, or unexpected catastrophes. There is no way to predict which people are likely to develop adjustment disorder, given the same stressor. Financial conditions, social support, and career and recreational opportunities can influence how well a person reacts to stress. A given person's susceptibility to stress may be influenced by such factors as social skills, intelligence, flexibility, genetic factors, and coping strategies."
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Adjustment Disorders, Symptoms, Psychcentral.com:"The development of emotional or behavioral symptoms in response to an identifiable stressor(s) occurring within 3 months of the onset of the stressor(s). These symptoms or behaviors are clinically significant as evidenced by either of the following: marked distress that is in excess of what would be expected from exposure to the stressor significant impairment in social, occupational or educational functioning."


Adjustment Disorder, PsychNet-UK:"An adjustment disorder is a debilitating reaction, usually lasting less than six months, to a stressful event or situation. The development of emotional or behavioral symptoms in response to an identifiable stressor(s) occurring within 3 months of the onset of the stressor(s)."


Adjustment disorders, Psychology Information Online:"Adjustment disorders are extremely common. A psychological adjustment disorder is characterized by the development of emotional and/or behavioral symptoms (such as, depression, anxiety, school behavior problems, fighting, work problems, academic problems, social conflicts or withdrawal, or physical complaints), in response to a specific stressor or stressors within your environment. To put it simply, if you are experiencing significant stress, and because of that stress you develop psychological symptoms that are greater than what might be expected, given the stress, and this causes impairment in some major life functioning, then you have an adjustment disorder. Major life functioning would include school adjustment, work adjustment, social adjustment, legal difficulties, family adjustment or physical health."
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Adjustment Disorder, Causes, Psychology Today Magazine:"The cause is a life stressor. Adults usually develop adjustment disorders to stressors related to marital discord, finances, or work. In adolescents, common stressors include school problems, family or parents' marital problems, or sexuality issues. Other types of stressors include death of a loved one, life changes, unexpected catastrophes, medical conditions such as cancer and subsequent treatments. There is no way to predict which people are likely to develop adjustment disorder, given the same stressor. Factors that influence how well a person reacts to stress may include economic conditions, availability of social supports, and occupational and recreational opportunities. Intrapersonal susceptibility to stress may include such factors as social skills, intelligence, genetics, and coping strategies."
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Definition Adjustment Disorders, PSYweb.com:"Adjustment disorders are defined as a inability or maladaptive reaction to an identifiable stressful life event(s) / stressor(s). ( e.g., divorce, family crises, ... ) Symptoms must occur within three months of the event(s) / stressor(s) and persisted for no longer than six months."


Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis: Adjustment Disorder, TheMCFox.com:"Adjustment Disorder - "A stress-related, short-term, non-psychotic disturbance." Adjustment disorders are very common and can affect anyone, regardless of gender, age, race, or lifestyle. It is not the same as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Usually, an adjustment disorder is a short-lived event, typically lasting less than 6 months, unless a person is faced with a chronic recurring crisis such as the repeated exacerbations and progression that typically occur in multiple sclerosis."



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