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Impulsivity, Compulsivity and Behavioral Dyscontrol is closed for submissions.
Published articles will remain accessible online and archived in PubMed, as well as DOAJ, CrossRef, PubMed Central, and Google Scholar.


Indexed in: PubMed, PubMed Central, Scopus, Google Scholar, DOAJ, CrossRef, PsycINFO

PMCID: all published articles receive a PMCID

Mission Statement

Impulsivity, Compulsivity and Behavioral Dyscontrol is no longer open for submissions, but we welcome your contribution to other relevant Frontiers specialty sections. While this specialty section has now closed, its archive of articles represents its aim to contribute to the understanding of Impulsivity, Compulsivity and Behavioral Dyscontrol. Impulsivity is defined as a tendency to react to stimuli in a rapid, unplanned fashion without allowing time for complete processing of information. Impulsive behavior has been shown to be associated with decreased sensitivity to negative consequences of behavior and a lack of regard for long-term consequences.

Impulse control disorders are named as such due to their essential feature, which is the failure to resist an impulse, drive or temptation to perform a behavior. This behavior is experienced as anxiolitic, and even as pleasurable. Whether the diagnosis is that of pathological gambling, kleptomania, pyromania, tricotillomania, intermittent explosive disorder, binge eating or compulsive buying, the affected individual is unable to voluntarily control, decrease or stop the pathological behavior.

A broad spectrum of psychiatric disorders has the manifestations of fundamental personality trait such as impulsiveness and aggressive behavior. There has been much debate whether substance-related disorders and non-substance-related behaviors are best categorized as “addictions”, “compulsions” or “impulsive control disorders”. However, both DSM-IV-TR and the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th Revision (ICD-10) classify pathological gambling, kleptomania, pyromania, tricotillomania, intermittent explosive disorder, binge eating or compulsive buying as impulse control disorders.

Although research shows that impulse control disorders comprise up to 10% of psychiatric diagnoses, they remain underdiagnosed or undertreated by clinicians, patients’ families and patients themselves. Even now, the patient-family-therapist triangle sees these disorders as personal behavioral problems which could be solved by behavioral modifications without medical help.

The section had the following aims:

- To explore impulsive behaviors and their relationship with different psychiatric diagnoses
- To explain the biopsychosocial connection of the impulsive behavior
- To explore the relationship between impulsive behavior and aggression
- To explain the importance of impulse control disorders as a unique group of diagnoses in clinical practice
- To demonstrate the neurocognitive, neurofunctional and neurophysiological changes in impulsivity-aggression-behavioral dyscontrol triangle
- To explore the genetic and environmental factors in these disorders
- To explore different treatment possibilities in these disorders
- To remember our role as therapists and researchers in the legal and ethical issues
- To remind ourselves of our mission as therapists and our behavior in relation to this specific type of patient.

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That is why Frontiers provides online free and open access to all of its research publications. For more information on open access click here.

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