Frequent crying spells is an odd symptom and can sometimes indicate a health issue. A crying spell may seem to appear from nowhere, being completely spontaneous. They tend to occur when you are simply completing daily tasks and may leave you wondering: why do I cry for no reason? In some cases, a crying spell indicates a physical cause while at other times they may arise from subconscious emotions you haven’t processed. If you tend to get teary-eyed for no reason, then this article can help you figure out why this is happening and what you can do about it.
Why Do I Cry for No Reason?
In most cases, those with extreme depression will experience more emotional numbing than crying. Despite this, depression may be indicated by an increased need for crying. This is a real concern as around 9% of Americans have depression.
To help you recognize depression and know when to seek treatment, these are some of the other symptoms:
- Sadness for the majority of the day on an almost daily basis
- Feeling worthless or hopeless
- Losing energy
- Losing enjoyment from previously pleasurable things
- Uncontrollable crying
- Difficulty concentrating
- Difficulty making decisions
- Increased need for sleep
- Inability to sleep or insomnia
- Digestive problems or stomachaches
- Decrease in sex drive
- Changes in appetite as well as weight gain or loss
- Thoughts of suicide or death
If left untreated, depression will typically get worse. If you think the answer to “why do I cry for no reason” is depression, talk to your doctor so you can begin treatment as soon as possible.
Take a test for depression HERE.
Many people feel like crying during as well as before or after an anxiety attack. These attacks are a single moment of overwhelming fear. In many cases, it is a feeling of impending doom or death. Crying is a natural response to these dreadful feelings. Other people maintain the strong emotions even after their anxiety attack and this may include concerns about how helpless they felt when the attack occurred. Because of the intensity of panic attacks, it is natural and even expected to feel as if you need to cry.
You can recognize symptoms of anxiety by familiarizing yourself with the following signs:
- Feelings of powerlessness
- Feelings of nervousness
- Feelings of impending doom, panic, or danger
- Hyperventilation (rapid or deep breathing that occur with anxiety attacks)
- An increase in heart rate
- Excessive sweating
- Difficulty concentrating on things other than the current worries
- Feelings tired or weak
It is possible that the answer to “why do I cry for no reason” is anxiety, and it won’t go away by itself. Without proper help, the symptoms may actually worsen. In many cases, it is easier to treat anxiety when it is detected early so visit a mental health professional or doctor if you suspect you have anxiety.
Take an anxiety test HERE
Increased anxiety levels are linked to an increase in tears, including unexplained crying. Many experts believe that this link means that stress can also lead to tears. Situations with conflict tend to frequently lead to tears and such situations present interpersonal stress. Crying may help with resolution to the conflict, giving it interpersonal functions like getting support or help from others.
If you are asking yourself “why do I cry for no reason” and have a lot of stress in your life, take some time for yourself every day to figure out the stressors and take care of them. Although stress isn’t diagnosed as a medical condition, it can worsen physical problems or lead to them, including heart disease and digestive distress.
Approximately 20-40 % of all women experience some variations of premenstrual syndrome before the onset of their menstrual cycle. Crying spells are a common symptom of this condition, along with headaches and bloating. Other possible symptoms include moodiness and irritability. In the case of unexplained crying linked to PMS, you can simply wait for the spell to pass. After your flow begins, the emotions and crying should lessen. If the emotional response interferes with your daily life, however, you should talk to your doctor about Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, a condition that is more debilitating than PMS but much less common.
Lack of Sleep
Just like babies, adults cry when they are tired. If you find yourself suddenly crying, it may indicate that you don’t get enough sleep at night. In fact, researches have shown that people experience a change in mood if you only get 4.5 hours of sleep regularly. The easiest way to resolve this cause of crying is to make sure you get enough rest every night. Most people need 7 to 8 hours of sleep per day, but your specific requirements may vary.
What Should I Do?
No matter what you think, you will never cry without a reason. You may simply be unsure what that reason is because it is unconscious in nature.
One of the psychological defense mechanisms that people use is switching emotional or psychological content to an unconscious level because it is too challenging to deal with. If you notice yourself crying and don’t know why, don’t try to stop the crying. The act of shedding tears can relieve internal pressure, helping prevent serious complications.
It is a good idea to visit a psychologist to help you find out “why do I cry for no reason”. They can work with you to identify conscious and unconscious factors and help you deal with them.
You can also work on taking some simple steps yourself, either before you visit the psychologist or as a combined effort with your treatment.
- Focus on finding happiness in life instead of on your sadness. Look at the good things you have, such as kittens or children playing or flowers.
- If you feel like crying, call a close friend for a distraction. Simply talking to them should help.
- Make a journal where you write about your feelings. Vent whatever emotions you have, whether positive or negative. Expressing yourself can help relieve your emotions.