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Impulse Control Disorders: Biological Factors

Impulse control disorders are characterized by repeated acts that have no clear rational motivation, generally harm the person’s own interests and those of other people, and are associated with impulses the person experiences as uncontrollable. Without a clear understanding of each disorder’s underlying neurobiology, there continues to be debate as to which disorders should be considered within this category. This article focuses on gambling disorder, kleptomania, compulsive sexual behavior, and problematic Internet use. These conditions appear to be relatively common, particularly among young adults and individuals with mental health issues. Collectively, these conditions cause considerable suffering for affected individuals but can also negatively affect families and careers. In response to the need, since the mid-2000s, there has been a considerable research focus on understanding ...

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