Cognitive dysphoria

Cognitive dysphoria (semantically the opposite of euphoria) is medically recognized as a cognitive and emotional state in which a person experiences intense feelings of dissatisfaction, and in some cases indifference to the world around them. [1] [2] These feelings can vary in their intensity depending on the dosage consumed and the user's susceptibility to mental instability. Although dysphoria is an effect, the term is also used colloquially to define a state of general melancholic unhappiness (such as that of mild depression) [3] [4] often combined with an overwhelming sense of discomfort and malaise. [5]

Cognitive dysphoria is often accompanied by other coinciding effects such as anxiety and depression. [1] [2] [6] It is most commonly induced under the influence of moderate dosages of deliriant compounds, such as DPH and datura. However, it can also occur during a stimulant offset and during the withdrawal symptoms of almost any substance.


  1. [1][2]
    American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.), 826. Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing. |
  2. [1][2]
    Zoellner, L. A., Pruitt, L. D., Farach, F. J., & Jun, J. J. (2014). Understanding heterogeneity in PTSD: fear, dysphoria, and distress. Depression and anxiety, 31(2), 97-106. |
  3. Epkins, C. C. (1996). Cognitive specificity and affective confounding in social anxiety and dysphoria in children. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 18(1), 83-101. |
  4. Bradley, B. P., Mogg, K., & Lee, S. C. (1997). Attentional biases for negative information in induced and naturally occurring dysphoria. Behaviour research and therapy, 35(10), 911-927. |
  5. Disner, S. G., Beevers, C. G., Haigh, E. A., & Beck, A. T. (2011). Neural mechanisms of the cognitive model of depression. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 12(8), 467. |
  6. Koster, E. H., De Raedt, R., Goeleven, E., Franck, E., & Crombez, G. (2005). Mood-congruent attentional bias in dysphoria: maintained attention to and impaired disengagement from negative information. Emotion, 5(4), 446. |




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