Intermittent Explosive Disorder & Addiction: Treatment, Signs, and Risks
Looking for addiction and intermittent explosive disorder treatment information and more? You have come to the right place.
The basic, what is an intermittent explosive disorder (IED)?
According to the National Institute of Health, it is estimated that 16 million Americans have IED.
Intermittent explosive disorder (IED) is a major mental disorder that forces the patients to have sudden impulsive episodes which might involve some anger outbursts, violent behavior, repeated events of violent actions and so on.
Certain common events like breaking of objects by throwing them, road rage, temper tantrums, and domestic abuse also qualify as events committed by IED patients.
Such events can harm the personal life of the patient and their relationship with their peers. In case of a serious event, the patient can find themselves entangled in a financial or legal fiasco.
IED is a major chronic disorder that might persist for years, this why the right intermittent explosive disorder treatment is very important. The rage involved might diminish, but the outbursts remain for years.
There are many ways to solve this mental disorder which will be discussed further in the article.
Intermittent explosive disorder symptoms
Several eruptions are caused by IED and when these eruptions occur, they might continue for up to 30 minutes. These eruptions are the outcome of the mental disorder that has engulfed the patient.
However, if the symptoms are identified early, the patient can be helped by giving them the best possible intermittent explosive disorder treatment.
The episodes experienced by the patients might be filled with a lot of physical aggression and very little verbal abuse or aggression. The patient becomes impulsive and irritable. The episodes are accompanied by
- Racing thoughts about more than one subject
- Tightness in Chest
- Enhanced energy
The verbal and explosive episodes might be proportion to the trigger and the patient might suffer from the following after the explosion:
- Temper tantrums
- Threatening or Assaulting tendencies towards animals or people
- Damage to property
- Involvement in Physical fights
- Shoving or slapping action
- Many heated arguments without any reason
The patient usually experiences a sense of relief and fatigue after every episode. The patient also suffers from guilt and regret after the episode.
Intermittent explosive disorder causes and risk Factors
The symptoms of an intermittent explosive disorder begin as early as the age of 7 years in patients or during the teenage years. The symptoms are most common in teenagers and younger adults.
Despite the numerous studies revolving around this disorder, there has been no single cause that was identified as the major cause of intermittent explosive disorder.
The following factors, however, have shown a considerable effect on the IED patients that have been studied so far.
- Abnormalities in the brain: For some people, the functioning, structure, and chemistry of the brain might be different than the usual brain. This may cause IED.
- Genetics: Genetics plays an important role and might be instrumental in the passing of the disorder from the parent to the children.
- Environment: A broken family, an abusive family, or a physically abusive relationship or a relationship involving verbal abuse might also give rise to the disorder in a particular person. All these factors create a deep impact on young children if exposed to such behavior regularly.
The following environments can cause a teenager or young adult or a child to develop symptoms of the intermittent explosive disorder:
- A long history of mental health disorders: Any person with a borderline personality disorder, antisocial personality disorder or any similar disorder tend to develop the symptoms of intermittent explosive disorder. These people might already be showcasing symptoms of Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and disruptive behavior. They should be admitted to therapy as soon as possible.
- A long history of physical abuse: Anyone who has been exposed to multiple traumas in their childhood or has been abused as a child has an increased risk of developing the symptoms of the intermittent explosive disorder.
According to the National Comorbidity Survey Replication (N=9,282) and Adolescent Supplement (N=9,632), young adults and teenagers suffering from anxiety disorder are more likely to suffer from an intermittent explosive disorder.
These patients tend to receive some kind of behavioral treatment, especially for their aggression, a psychiatric diagnosis of depression or drug abuse diagnosis or a diagnosis of multiple additional disorders.
Due to the presence of anxiety disorder, the patients are unable to perform according to their potential in school.
The other co-occurring disorders that may accompany IED are:
- Post-traumatic Disorder (PTSD): This might be troubling the patient if they have encountered any form of intense physical or mental trauma. The patient might be having an irregular sleep cycle, partial memory loss, depression, and constant nightmares.
- Depressive Disorders: Patients suffering from this disorder have long spells of depression where they lack interest in any form of activity and even have suicidal feelings. The sadness in the patient is persistent and the patient might suffer from insomnia and severe weight loss among the various symptoms.
- Anxiety Disorders: This is a strong mental disorder in which the patient worries excessively and is constantly terrorized by some fact. The obsession with stress and tension is so much that normal daily activities are affected and so are the professional and personal lives of the patients.
- Bipolar Disorder: This is an extreme mental disorder where the patient might suffer from either a high energy episode or a low energy episode. During the low energy episode, the patient suffers from depression and might have suicidal feelings. During the high energy periods, the patient might ignore sleep and take on some dangerous activities that might put the episode in danger.
- Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD): This is a common disorder in children and young adults. They show the symptoms of irritability, defiance in behavior, acting out against the rules, throwing tantrums and so on. This disorder disrupts the surroundings of the patient.
- Conduct Disorder: This is also developed by children and young adults. The patient repeats age-inappropriate behavior and disrupts the normal functioning of their surroundings.
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): This disorder begins in early childhood and persists for a lifetime. The patient is hyperactive and is unable to focus for a long time. The exact cause of this disorder is unknown.
It is important that part of the treatment for intermittent explosive disorder addresses the co-0ccuring disorders too for an effective long term treatment.
Intermittent explosive disorder and alcoholism
According to some studies, people with an intermittent explosive disorder are five times more prone to substance abuse of any sort.
IED involves explosive outbursts and when paired with alcohol, these outbursts can harm both the patient as well as their family friends and others.
The patient needs separate therapy for their alcoholism in such a case.
Whenever an IED patient consumes alcohol, it might act as a relapse trigger and the patient is more prone to have an outburst.
Intermittent Explosive Disorder and Drug Addiction
Studies have shown that more people are affected by IED as compared to bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. These patients were studied and it was found that their relationship with drug addiction was caused by the symptoms of IED.
In other words, it was concluded that IED causes drug addiction or vice versa.
Intermittent Explosive Disorder Treatment
Below are some of the therapies available during an intermittent explosive disorder treatment program.
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: This is a short treatment that helps the patients understand how they feel when they are triggered and how they react. The therapist makes the patient understand how they should react instead of how the impulse makes them react. A trial conducted by some University of Chicago researchers found that patients who participated in cognitive behavior therapy showed less aggression and anger.
- Motivational Interviewing: This is more of a counseling session where ambivalence is emphasized upon. The patient is inspired to do only positive things and accomplish goals that would lead to a better quality of life.
- Relapse Prevention: This is a cognitive-behavioral approach that tries to study and eliminate those situations which might cause the patient to relapse. The patient’s family and friends play an important role in this form of treatment.
- Contingency Management: This form of behavioral treatment involves punishments for patients if they are unable to achieve certain goals. The patients are also rewarded if they achieve positive goals and move one step forward towards recovery.
- Family Therapy: This type of therapy is used to understand all the emotional needs that the patient might have not received from the family. The family relations are mended by a therapist and they are educated on how they can help the patient.
Treatment Session Options
When receiving intermittent explosive disorder treatment, patients have options on how to receive treatment. They can live at a facility for the duration of treatment or go from home to the clinic, hospital, or facility to receive treatment.
Below are the common rehab options.
- Inpatient/residential rehabilitation programs: This is when the patient stays at the treatment facility fulltime while getting treatment.
- Outpatient rehabilitation programs: This refers to when the patient receives treatment for their disorder despite not being admitted to the hospital or facility. After each treatment at the facility, the patient will go home or work.
IED Rehab Centers Process
Rehabilitation is the name given to the procedure of treating a patient’s substance abuse by using psychotherapeutic treatments and pharmacological methods. Whenever a patient is admitted to a rehabilitation program, the following steps are followed to ensure that the patient gets the best treatment possible:
- Assessment: This step involves many physical and mental tests that help the medical understand the health status, the type of addiction and the IED of the patient. After studying all these factors, a personalized plan is built for the patient.
- Detoxification: This is also an essential step if the patient drinks alcohol or takes drugs. This helps with cleaning the body from toxins and dealing with the withdrawal symptoms that follow.
- The main rehab: This involves the various therapies that a patient must undergo to help the therapist understand the core problem
- Aftercare: This is one of the most crucial steps in an IED rehab program as it prevents the patients from relapsing. It may involve follow-up programs, transitional houses, sober living facilities, job or skill development, and support group attendance such
It is important that all steps followed thoroughly when the patient undergoes an impulse control disorder treatment program.
We hope we have provided some helpful information. If you need more information about intermittent explosive disorder treatment center programs please call 866-579-8780 to be connected with a rehab facility admission counselor.
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