Help! I Can’t Stop Crying

Crying from time to time is totally natural. However, if you can’t stop crying, this can be a sign of an underlying illness.

Is it weird for an adult to cry excessively? Well, it depends. If you’ve just experienced an agonizing event, then this can lead to crying.

The death of a family member or the diagnosis of a serious illness are common causes. However, if you’re crying for no apparent reason, and you can’t control it, then you need to investigate.

Some people cry over everything – sad things, happy things, etc. Some people are simply more emotional than others.

But there’s a difference between the occasional cry and not having the ability to control it. In this article, we’ll try to distinguish between the two.

The Link Between Anxiety and Crying 

chronic crying

If you can’t stop crying, then it’s possible that you’re having anxiety. Anxiety can manifest itself in many ways (mentally and physically).

If you don’t properly deal with the daily stresses of life, it can lead to chronic anxiety.

Anxiety is so powerful that it can cause symptoms like shortness of breath, pain, and even suicidal thoughts.

If you’re chronically crying, then this could be your body’s way of dealing with anxiety. 

Crying allows you to release these negative emotions from your body. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by stress, we encourage you to have a good cry.

You’ll almost certainly feel better afterwards.

Pseudobulbar Affect – What is it? 

The psudobulbar affect (PBA) is a condition in which you experience involuntary episodes of laughing and/or crying.

Episodes happen sporadically throughout the day, oftentimes for no apparent reason.

During an episode, an individual might cry or laugh in an exaggerated manner, even if it doesn’t make sense in the current situation.

What Causes PBA? 

The brain is the primary control center for emotions, including crying. If a certain part of the brain gets damaged, it can lead to random bouts of crying.

Various neurological diseases (ALS, MS, Parkinson’s disease, TBI, stroke, and Alzheimer’s disease) and traumatic injuries (car accidents, sports accidents, etc.) are the main causes.

Can PBA Be Cured? 

nuedexta treatment

Unfortunately, crying due to PBA cannot be cured with today’s medical technology. However, there are treatment options available.

The most common is a medication called NUEDEXTA.

This drug can help reduce episodes of uncontrollable laughing and crying.

It contains two powerful ingredients – quinidine and dextromethorphan – that work very effectively for most patients.

Stroke and Chronic Crying 

If you can’t stop crying, be on the lookout for symptoms of stroke.

  • Sudden numbness
  • Sudden weakness
  • Sudden confusion
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Sudden blurred vision
  • Sudden difficulty speaking

If you’re experiencing one or more of these symptoms, then it could be a medical emergency.

Don’t shrug it off thinking that it’s not serious. Pay attention to your body and don’t ignore serious symptoms like these.

A stroke happens whenever blood is cut off from your brain, causing the death of brain tissue. It’s a life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical intervention.

Otherwise, you’re likely to die.

If the part of the brain responsible for emotions experiences a stroke, it can lead to chronic crying.

So if your crying is combined with any of the symptoms above, go to the emergency room.

Parkinson’s Disease and Chronic Crying

If you’re having episodes of inappropriate crying, then it might be due to Parkinson’s disease. This disease can cause a flood of uncontrollable emotions.

So, if you’ve been diagnosed with it, it might be the cause of your crying.

If you haven’t been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, then see a neurologist. They’ll be able to confirm whether or not you have this disease.

It’s most common in older people, although younger people have been diagnosed with it as well.

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Inappropriate Crying 

People with MS can also have bouts of uncontrollable crying. That’s because MS is a disease which affects the nervous system.

It’s a chronic, lifelong disease with no current cure. However, “flares” are possible. During a flare, symptoms can be worse than normal.

Can’t Stop Crying? Go See a Doctor

You might be an emotional person, or you might have a neurological problem. Without proper testing, there’s no way to know for sure.

Tell your doctor about your symptom and to see if they can diagnose you.

If you can’t stop crying, then you might be having a stroke, or developing a disease like Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s disease.

Other diseases like MS and ALS are also potential causes.

If you end up getting diagnosed with PBA, then your doctor will most likely prescribe you NUEDEXTA.

That will likely alleviate your symptoms by a large degree.

Ask a Question: If you want to ask a medical doctor a question that hasn't been answered in one of our articles go to: Ask a Medical Doctor About your Symptoms

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1 Comment

  • My wife has had Alzheimer’s for 15 years. Nine months ago I decided that the best thing for Judy would be to be in a nursing home. She is at Bridgeview nursing home, Ormond, FL. She is now confined to a wheelchair, which she has fallen out of 3 times. About 12 weeks ago she started crying almost all the time. Ten weeks ago she started taken Neudexta. They said before they try any other RX, that they will wait a total of 12 weeks before they review her condition to try additional/other RX. Within the first 2 weeks of taking the RX she did stop crying quite a bit, then it has stayed there. Is there anything, anything that can be done to help this poor women? Thank you, Rick Rumford

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