A Brighter Tomorrow - Impulse Disorder

Posted on 11 August 2020 at 10:50am

The COVID-19 pandemic has made access to mental health resources difficult, and for children with impulse control disorders, the changes this coming school year are creating more challenges. Some students have not been able to meet with their school-based clinicians since they moved to virtual learning. 

Most children will act up or become resistant at times. The American Psychiatric Association defines the difference between disruptive children and impulse disorders as being much more severe and longer-lasting behaviors. 

The APA says disruptive, impulse-control and conduct disorders refer to a group of disorders. The disorder can be characterized by aggressive behavior, trouble controlling emotions or breaking the rules or even laws. 

According to the APA, approximately 6% of children are affected by an impulse disorder. Mental health experts say impulse disorders most commonly begin in childhood and are more prevalent in males than females. 

The main difference between an impulse disorder and other mental health conditions is that the person's distress is focused outward instead of inward. 

Treatment is available for impulse disorders. Unlike many mental health conditions, experts do not recommend medication. Instead, a combination of therapy and training is used to help children and parents.