Emotional disturbance has no single known cause, but there are multiple and overlapping factors that can get together stimulate a proneness to it. It can include student biological factors and environmental influences like home life, school, and culture. Some biological factors that can lead to emotional disturbance are exposure to drugs and alcohol, a physical illness or disability, an undernourished or malnourished lifestyle, brain damage, and hereditary factors. Home life issues that can lead to emotional disturbance include poverty, stress in the family because of some emotional upset, inconsistent rules or expectations as well as inconsistent and unhealthy discipline, neglect, family members are poor role models, a high rate of negative interactions in the family, and the family has a poor attitude towards school or education. There are also situations at school that cause emotional disturbance to teens such as the classroom has a negative environment, the school is insensitive to student differences or cultural issues, and inconsistent rules (S.W. Smith, G. G. Taylor, 2010).
There are also medical conditions that cause an emotional disturbance. Some of the possible common medical conditions are depression, mania, bipolar disorder, chronic pain, cancer, personality disorder, schizophrenia, pseudodementia. Some of the less common causes of emotional disturbance may include generalized anxiety disorder, Huntington’s disease, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. This information shows that some causes of emotional disturbance are related to diabetes, or a family history of diabetes (from a list of 12 total causes). These diseases and conditions may be more likely causes of emotional disturbance if the patient has diabetes, is at risk of diabetes, or has a family history of diabetes.