What are the symptoms of psychological disorders?

Symptoms of psychological disorders vary based on the specific disorder, but mood and behavioral symptoms are common. Symptoms can be chronic and relapsing. They can interfere with your ability to interact in society. Some psychological disorders can also cause physical symptoms. For example, panic attacks associated with anxiety disorders may have symptoms that look and feel like a heart attack. Somatoform disorders, conditions in which symptoms suggest a medical cause but none can be found, frequently involve symptoms of pain or achiness.

Common symptoms of psychological disorders

Psychological disorders can cause a variety of symptoms; common symptoms include:

  • Agitation, hostility or aggression
  • Alcohol or drug abuse
  • Alterations in energy levels
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion or disconnectedness
  • Erratic behavior
  • Irritability and mood changes
  • Perception or thought process disturbances (psychoses), such as hallucinations and delusions
  • Persistent or abrupt mood changes that can interfere with day-to-day life
  • Problem denial
  • Social withdrawal

Physical symptoms that may accompany psychological disorders

  • Psychological disorders may also be associated with physical symptoms including:
  • Inexplicable physical problems
  • Lethargy or malaise
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Weight and appetite changes

Serious symptoms that might indicate a life-threatening condition

In some cases, psychological disorders can be life threatening. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have any of these life-threatening symptoms including:

  • Being a danger to oneself or others, including threatening, irrational or suicidal behavior
  • Inability to care for one’s basic needs
  • Trauma, such as bone deformity, burns, eye injuries, and other injuries

What are psychological disorders?

Psychological disorders, also referred to as mental disorders, are abnormalities of the mind that result in persistent behavior patterns that can seriously affect your day-to-day function and life. Many different psychological disorders have been identified and classified, including eating disorders, such as anor... Read more about psychological disordersintroduction


What causes psychological disorders?

The causes of psychological disorders are not known, but a number of factors are thought to influence their development. These factors include chemical imbalances in the brain, childhood experiences, heredity, illnesses, prenatal exposures, and stress. Gender plays a role in some, but not all, psychological disorders.

What are the risk factors for psychological disorders?

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How are psychological disorders treated?

The first step in the treatment of psychological disorders is recognizing that a problem exists. Often, people who have psychological disorders deny their problem and do not seek medical care for their symptoms. Regular medical care can be helpful because it allows a health care professional to provide early screening tests. Regular medical care also provides an opportunity for your health care... Read more about psychological disorderstreatments

Medical Reviewer: William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS Last Annual Review Date: Sep 20, 2013 Copyright: © Copyright 2014 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Mental Health and Behavior