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Adjustment disorder (AD) in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), is a strong, impairing emotional reaction to a stressor or stressors. In persons with AD, challenging life events result in more persistent and impairing distress than normal, although the symptoms involved do not meet the diagnostic criteria for other DSM-5 disorders. AD is the DSM diagnosis that is most closely related to what is colloquially termed a nervous breakdown. Potential AD-cueing stressors are varied and common. Examples include romantic relationship conflicts or losses, problems in school, moving to a new living or working environment, work problems, physical illness, marriage, becoming a parent, parental divorce, retirement, and military service. A wide array of psychological and behavior symptoms can also occur in ...

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