Are your emotional responses normal or abnormal?

Date:
June 25, 2015
Source:
SAGE Publications
Summary:
We all feel emotion, we all get upset, can feel low, angry and overjoyed, but when do these emotional responses become something of a medical concern? When are these feelings inappropriate, too intense, or lasting too long? When is the emotional state you are in classed as depression?

We all feel emotion, we all get upset, can feel low, angry and overjoyed, but when do these emotional responses become something of a medical concern? When are these feelings inappropriate, too intense, or lasting too long? When is the emotional state you are in classed as depression? In light of the 5th revision of the influential Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM- 5), where a person can now be diagnosed as undergoing a “major depressive episode” if showing depressive symptoms for more than two weeks after bereavement, leading researchers in a special section of the SAGE journal Emotion Reviewargue that we need to take a different approach to diagnosis and that how we define “normal” emotion should be used to inform clinical practice.

The DSM- 5 specifies that the clinician should exert judgment when diagnosing depression after bereavement but the continuum between what emotional state is normal and what is abnormal makes the process difficult, especially in the absence of agreed upon criteria. “Over the millennia scientists from many different disciplines have struggled with the issue of defining what is normal and what is abnormal or pathological with respect to human bodily or mental states and human behaviour,” Klaus Scherer and Marc Mehu of the Swiss Center of Affective Sciences commented. They added:

“Psychiatrists and clinical psychologists are often called upon to reliably distinguish between normal and abnormal emotions. Increasingly this is done with the help of diagnostic category systems developed by professional associations and health organizations like the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM). In consequence, the definition of abnormal emotionality proposed by these classification systems has an extraordinary impact on the diagnosis and treatment of what is perceived as emotional disorders or disturbances.”

In order to combat this and ensure that clinical practice is diagnosing people with depression correctly, increased interaction between fundamental emotion research and the training of practitioners in the area of emotion disorder is needed. Scherer and Mehu emphasise the importance of understanding the mechanism underlying the triggering of emotional episodes and the factors that might be responsible for their potential malfunctioning.

They conclude: “It seems reasonable to assume that better understanding of the specific psychobiological mechanisms underlying emotional disorders can potentially lead to new treatments. The contributions in this special section demonstrate the important role that interdisciplinary emotion research could play in the understanding and treatment of emotional disorders and prepare the ground for future collaboration.”

Advertisements

About briandmahan

Following a catastrophic automobile accident several years ago, I began suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). I was hit by one of two cars that were racing on the 10 freeway in Los Angeles. And, although I walked away from the accident, I began to have several FULL-BLOWN panic attacks a day (I didn’t even know they were panic attacks; I just thought I was going crazy). But, after just a few sessions with a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, my anxiety and panic attacks ceased and I haven't had one in 9 years. In fact, my life changed so dramatically and quickly, I decided to train in the same technique. Upon completing a three-year training program studying Somatic Experiencing, the work of Peter Levine, PhD., my self-obsessed passion for healing and personal transformation shifted. I've been blessed to be able to help and assist other survivors of unresolved past traumatic events, who suffer from PTSD, Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Depression and Stress to feel safe, joyful and to take take control of their lives again. And, now, I consider that car wreck to be one of the best things that ever happened to me. It’s my passion for the past 9 years to share my story, experience, and know-how with others, like you, who may simply have been trying to heal with the wrong approaches. (You can’t heal a toothache by getting a massage.) I am not a psychologist, a medical doctor or a spiritual healer. I am a trauma survivor. And I have come to understand that PTSD, anxiety, panic, stress and depression are physiological conditions more so than they are psychological disorders. I hold retreats, workshops and free seminars, focused on establishing a sense of safety and re-awakening embodiment through healing stress and trauma. I also offer one-on-one sessions both face-to-face for local clients and by Phone and SKYPE for clients nationwide and internationally.
This entry was posted in PTSD, Somatic practitioner. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s