Kleptomania - Causes, Symptoms and Treatment .MF .

August 12, 2017 17:52 | Mental Disorders

Kleptomania - a disorder that is expressed inability to suppress the urge to steal.Stolen objects, usually not of great value.The very desire manifests itself as compulsive (inexplicable, spontaneous) pulse, which can not be brought under control.A person suffering from kleptomania, forced to steal, although aware of the criminal punishment.Kleptomania declared a mental illness, but at the same time, kleptomaniac actions are antisocial.Such a person is stealing, then repents of his deeds, even throwing these items.After a while, embezzlement repeated.

Steal all, women, men, children, adolescents, adults, rich and poor, but studies show that kleptomania is usually draws young people under the age of thirty years.It is believed that the disease occurs in the community at 0.6%.

Basically these are people who have previously suffered from other mental disorders.An important role is played by genetic predisposition.More on the development of kleptomania may affect eating disorders or sexual sphere.

Some experts argue that the passion for the theft is similar to drug addiction or gambling addiction, and sometimes goes "hand in hand" with these diseases.

Development of the disease contribute to stressful situations, failures in life.Theft by the patient, most often interpreted as a reward for failure, or revenge, but may be the result of delusions or hallucinations, in the presence of other mental disorders (schizophrenia).

During the theft, in connection with excitement at the kleptomaniac in the blood increases the adrenaline and the danger becomes very tempting.Then, if stealing successfully completed, there is a feeling of bliss and relaxation, even later - remorse and guilt.But in spite of the awareness of crime and discomfort for kleptomaniac more meaningful and pleasant emotions, sensations derived from theft.Feeling remorse causes aversion to theft and embezzlement pdolzhayutsya with even greater frequency.It contributes to this, as well, a sense of impunity.

Kleptomania, most often understood as obsessive-compulsive disorder.Kleptomania correlated (comes near, like) disorders such as depression, eating disorders (bulimia - Match 65%), social phobia, anxiety disorders.There are similarities with addiction is that it is impossible to resist the attraction.

mental disorders desire to steal the first time recognized in the '60s in the United States (at the time of the court case in California against Douglas Jones, he won the case and proved the existence of the illness).Now, people who suffer from kleptomania, became protected by law.Theft committed by a kleptomaniac as a result of irresistible, morbid attraction is not called a crime and refers to a disorder of mental activity.Of course, this is not sufficient to avoid liability for theft (only 5% of shoplifting committed by people with kleptomania).In case of suspicion of kleptomania appointed psychiatric examination, which will determine the presence of disease in of the subject.If kleptomania - the diagnosis, the patient is being treated compulsorily, since the presence of the illness led to a number of negative consequences.


Causes The exact cause of the disease is not known.There are several theories, which suggest that changes occur in brain structures.Kleptomania may be associated with neurotransmitter function (nerve impulse transmitter) serotonin.It helps to regulate mood and emotion.Low levels of serotonin - a common pattern in people who are prone to uncontrolled behavior.During the theft action occurs the release of dopamine (another neurotransmitter).Dopamine gives a pleasant feeling, become addicted, and patients are looking for the emergence of this feeling again.

Other studies have shown that kleptomania may appear after an accident, associated with head trauma.

There is still a need for more in-depth studies in this area to better understand and address the possible causes of kleptomania.

symptoms of kleptomania

Symptoms of kleptomania include:

- Strong uncontrollable impulse to steal objects.
- Feelings of tension, which is satisfied theft.
- Feelings of guilt or shame for theft, self-incriminating thoughts.
- episodes occur spontaneously, without planning.The party, in public places.
- sometimes stolen objects thrown as unnecessary or returned to the place, as they have no value.

Consequences kleptomania

all know from childhood that stealing is wrong.Patients kleptomania feel powerless and can not stop.The psyche is destroyed by feelings of guilt, shame, humiliation and self-loathing.The patient is immoral life and is constantly confused, steal or not.
Without treatment, kleptomania can lead to serious legal, financial and emotional problems.

Complications kleptomania

- Arrest
- Imprisonment
- Depression
- Abuse of alcohol and drugs
- Eating Disorders
- Anxiety
- Compulsive gambling
- Suicidal ideation and behavior
- Social isolation
- Addiction

kleptomania Treatment

Very few patients with kleptomania people to seek help on their own.As a general rule, associates revealed that get caught for stealing.Many people with this disease live in a secret shame, fear and seek qualified help.

kleptomania difficult to overcome on their own.Treatment of the disease usually involves medication and psychotherapy.There is no standard treatment for this disorder, scientists are still trying to understand what makes it better.You can try several kinds of treatment of kleptomania to find what will work in your situation.

Before starting treatment, it is necessary to assess their physical and psychological condition.Physical examination will help determine whether changes and brain damage or metabolic disorders.Laboratory methods, MRI, CT scan, blood chemistry, blood test for sugar content, help to clarify the diagnosis.When mental examination fill special psychological profiles, the results of which are used to set the exact diagnosis.

Then, guided by the ICD-10 (International Classification of Diseases, revision 10) of Mental Disorders.This part of the guidance established by the European Psychiatric Association and is used by mental health professionals to diagnose mental illness, as well as insurance companies by paying for treatment.

There is a certain type of medication that can cure kleptomania.Only psychotherapy and medications that increase serotonin levels, able to reduce or eliminate symptoms of the disease.Treatment is always a complex and individually chosen strictly on doctor's orders.It complicates the treatment process is insufficient experience in the use of psychiatric drugs, because it is difficult to track the overall positive trend in individual patients.Ill who get an appointment is not so much that would make large-scale studies.However, doctors succeeded in isolating the drug with greater efficiency.Which drug is best for a patient depends on the overall situation.

Pharmacotherapy kleptomania, consider drugs:

Antidepressants.Antidepressants a large number, but it is best proved effective selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI).Widely used in the treatment of fluoxetine (Prozac) and paroxetine (Paxil).

Normotimiki. These formulations are aimed at reducing the excitation in the brain.Reduces the urge to theft.In other fields of medicine used for the treatment of epilepsy.
Examples: topiramate (Topamax) and valproic acid (Depakene, Stavzor), carbamazepine (Melepsin, Tegretol).

Mood stabilizers. intended to align the mood changes are uniform, this makes it possible to control the urge to steal the appearance.Stabilizer called lithium (Lithobid).

funds for the treatment of substance dependence (opioids, alcohol). Naltrexone (Revia, Vivitrol), known as a synthetic opioid antagonist, blocking part of the brain that feels pleasure.This may reduce the urgency associated with the theft and have fun.

You may need to try several different drugs or combinations of drugs to see what works best with the fewest side effects.A positive result may have to wait a few weeks.Talk to your doctor if you are concerned.Under the supervision of a physician can change the drug or change the dosage.Many side effects, eventually, over time, leave.

Psychotherapy kleptomania

Preparing for a meeting with a psychiatrist.

- Write down any symptoms you are experiencing any, and their duration.It helps to know which events influence the desire to steal.
- Collect the history of life, including the traumatic events of the past, which have been fundamental in the formation of stress.
- Take your medical history.Also, label medications and nutritional supplements that are currently taking.
- Come to the reception with a family member or a friend, if possible.Someone who knows you for a long time, will help you remember more details of traumatic events.

think up questions to the psychiatrist and ask them at the beginning of the session in order to understand more about their disease.For example:

- Why I can not stop stealing?
- What are the treatments are more effective?
- What procedures can help me?
- As soon as I stop stealing?
- How often do I need therapy sessions and how long?
- Family therapy is useful in my case?
- There are drugs that can help me effectively?
- What are the possible side effects of these drugs?
- Are there brochures or other printed material that I can take with me?What sites do you recommend visiting?

psychiatrist, probably also asks a series of questions to get to know you.Tentative questions psychiatrist:

- At what age did the first time to experience an irresistible desire to steal?
- How often do you feel a desire to steal?
- You've never been caught and arrested for theft?
- How would you describe your feelings before, during and after the theft?
- What moments of theft you please?
- Where you make your theft?
- what to do with things that are stolen?
- What is the impact on your life has a desire to steal?
- Are there other mental disorders, such as depression, drug addiction or obsessive-compulsive disorder?If there were, what treatments and drugs have you used?
- using alcohol or drugs?How often?

behavioral psychotherapy - the best choice to treat kleptomania.In general, the patient will detach unhealthy, negative beliefs and behaviors and replace them with healthy and positive.

Cognitive therapy may include practices that will help to overcome the need to steal.One such method, when a psychologist with the patient loses theft situation, and then, in more detail, the consequences of this action and the punishment.Thus, on a subconscious level, a bond - theft associated with a negative point, but not with pleasure.

Therapy disgust - another popular method.Simulated the situation when a patient wants to steal something, in that moment, hold your breath, until the discomfort and lack of oxygen.The method is moderately painful, but if you exercise regularly, then if you want to steal will occur only unpleasant feeling.

Group psychotherapy - even if you can not find a group specifically for kleptomania, good results are obtained by participating in the group of Alcoholics Anonymous or groups devoted to other addictions.

Phytotreatment kleptomania

Ashwagandha (aswagandha) - adaptogenic (Adaptive) grass stabilizes adrenaline functions in the body, it stimulates potency.

Valerian (valerian root) - in direct an episode of mania.

Hypericum perforatum herb - works as an antidepressant.It is used on the basis of American studies in the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorders.St. John's wort proved effective in 60% of patients in the control group, and according to some reports has surpassed some antidepressants.

Rauwolfia serpentine (Serpentina) - the predecessor of reserpine, one of the most powerful herbal sedatives.

China Anle Camellia (Camellia Sinensis anle) - tea plant, contains the amino acid L-theanine
Properties neuroprotective (nervous system back), improves mood and relaxes, a natural antioxidant.It improves the conductivity of the myelin sheath of the nerve.

Corydalis Yan Hu Suo - an herb that has potent analgesic properties, as well as unlock the dopamine receptors, reduces the physical and mental pain, therefore, can be used to eliminate strong concern has anxiolytic effect, normalizes the function of sleep.

California poppy - opioid similar beznodiazepinam (tranquilizers, sedative drug origin.)

as well tableted preparations which are combinations of such plants:
Valerianae radix, Lupuli strobulus, Melissae folium, Hyperici herba, Aconitum napellus, Belladonna,Abrus precatorius, Chelidonium majus, Viburnum opulus, gentianae herba.

Ready combined herbal preparations in the pharmacy network:
lunapret (company manufacturer-bionorica), deprim (lek), neopersen forte, relana forte, seledin (alarsin), l-theanine, 5-htp, Yan hu Suo, serpina (himalaya), California poppy (organics), sedatif pf (boiron), Persia, afobazol, pomogusha, leptosedin, pession flover (nutricare), Mental Comfort Colloidial (Ad medicine).

appeal to "people's therapists" sorcerers, fortune-tellers, psychics.

Despite the fact that medicine denies paranormal abilities, and many people believe these charlatans, real cases show that this method of treatment is quite effective when applied to the manias and dependencies.This occurs because the dependent patients are very impressionable, and "decorated shamanism" in this case can make a strong impact on the patient.Some of these places and surroundings sessions are like theatrical performance: a frightening symbolism, cards, talismans, and so on.Patients fear are ready to believe anything, the main thing to choose the right direction and a man ready to play this role properly.The effect of such a suggestion is very large, it can be compared to coding for alcohol dependence (popular in the treatment of alcoholism, abstinence until 2-3 years).You can, as an alternative, use this strange way of dealing with the disease may be able to achieve progress in treatment.

support close

If your loved one is being treated for kleptomania, make sure you have penetrated into the details of his treatment plan and actively support its success.Useful joint participation in several therapeutic sessions, it may be that you know the important facts related to the disease.Take the opportunity to talk alone with the therapist.

patient recovery kleptomania - a long-term process, usually the victims are relatives, which inevitably also involved in the suffering and kleptomaniac's disease.Use relaxation techniques, meditation, or just spend time with friends.

Please do not blame the patient kleptomania is a mental illness, not a weakness of will power and character flaws.It is important to talk to emphasize the following points:

- Are you worried that you care about your loved one about his health and well-being.
- Are you afraid of the risk of theft and of uncontrolled disorder of consciousness, arrest, loss of employment, or the rupture of relations.
- You must understand that the desire to steal may be too strong to resist, the patient can not do as you advise.
- Helping to assess and kleptomaniac actions without bias, without judging.
- If you need help in the preparation of a conversation with someone you know, call a therapist.He will tell you how to lead yourself, what would the patient did not take a defensive stance, not to become embittered and revealed his feelings.

Psychiatrist Kondratenko NA