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Intermittent Explosive Disorder Treatments

(Also Known As: Anger Management Treatments, Anger Treatments, Stress Management Treatments, Rage Treatments, Impulsive Control Disorder Treatments)

(Reviewed by: Paul Peterson, Licensed Therapist)

What Kinds of Intermittent Explosive Disorder Treatments are Available?

The treatment for intermittent explosive disorder is usually comprised of medication or psychotherapy, such as counseling and cognitive behavioral therapy, or sometimes both might be necessary.

Drug Therapy

  • Antidepressant drugs such as serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
  • Mood stabilizer drugs such as lithium carbonate and propranolol
  • Anticonvulsant medications such as carbamazepine, phenytoin, gabapentin, and lamotrigine.
  • Anti-anxiety agents such as diazepam, alprazolam and lorazepam.
  • Major tranquilizers may also regulate psychotic symptoms such as haloperidol and clozapine.
  • Beta blockers that are prescribed to slow down the heart rate and blood pressure can also help control the explosive rage.
  • Neurosurgery and decreasing the testosterone levels in men are some of the unproven treatments for intermittent explosive disorder.

Psychotherapy and Counseling

Counseling for intermittent explosive disorder is more focused on anger management. Individuals with impulse control disorder usually seek counseling and psychotherapy in addition to the medication treatment when they are concerned of the impact of their violent behavior on important aspects of their life, such as interpersonal relationships, education, and employment. 5

Psychotherapy helps the person with this abnormal behavior to better understand their thoughts and learn to control their behavior. It further helps the person to focus learning on anger management techniques to help control raging impulses. The person will also learn to focus on the underlying motivations and feelings and the conscious and unconscious thought processes that could be the reasons for their anger and rage.

Cognitive behavioral therapy also helps the person with intermittent explosive behavior to identify the pattern of thoughts and overt behavior while learning to recognize the onset of the impulse to explode and identify the circumstances that are associated with the angry outbursts. The person learns to develop techniques that can help prevent the occurrence of their violent behavior.

Could You Have Intermittent Explosive Disorder?

Intermittent Explosive Disorder Topics

Related Conditions

Antisocial Personality Disorder – Disregard and Violation of the Rights of Others, Conduct Disorder, Sociopath, Psychopaths, Lack of Empathy
Anxiety Disorder NOS – Stress, Anxiousness, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Social Phobia
Kleptomania – Hoarding of Things, Stealing, Theft, Depression, Guilt, Compulsion, Schizoid, Paranoid, Borderline Personality Disorder
Oppositional Defiant Disorder – Behavioral Pattern of Disobedience, Hostile, Defiant Behavior towards Authority
Pyromania – Impulse to Start a Fire to Relieve Tension, Gratification of Doing the Act, Psychosis, Act of Revenge, Euphoria