Stop Me Because I Can't Stop Myself : Taking Control of Impulsive Behavior

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9780071398268: Stop Me Because I Can't Stop Myself : Taking Control of Impulsive Behavior

This volume is based on research which has led to new discoveries about impulse control and new ways of treating the problem. Drs Jon Grant and S. W. Kim are specialists in impulse-control disorders and their pioneering work at the University of Minnesota, where they conduct their clinical research, has attracted patients from all over the world and the attention of the American Psychiatric Association and The Obsessive-Compulsive Foundation. This book aims to offer new help and hope to people who suffer from impulse control. The authors begin by defining the nature of this widely misunderstood problem, its neurobiological origins and how it differs from Tourette's syndrome, alcohol addiction and other substance-abuse problems. From there, they offer help to impulse-control sufferers and their families, including: how to know if you have a problem; forms of impulse-control disorders; the impact of these disorders on everyday life - at work, at home, legal problems, alcohol and drug use, and suicide; impulse-control problems in children and adolescents, as well as the elderly; medical and pharmacological treatments; therapy and other treatments; what doesn't work; and what family, friends and patients themselves can do.

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From the Back Cover:

New hope for people whose impulses are out of control

Millions of Americans have secret problems: the man whose craving to gamble drives him to spend night after night in casinos, getting deeper in debt . . . the woman who can't stop shopping, hiding bills from her husband and racking up thousands on her credit cards . . . the teenager who compulsively steals until, 40 years later, she is finally arrested for shoplifting. Every day, people struggle with irresistible urges that can damage lives, families, and careers. Yet ashamed of the behavior and the inability to control it, many suffer in silence, too embarrassed to seek help.

Now, Drs. Jon E. Grant and S. W. Kim, the nation's leading specialists in impulse control disorders, offer the latest research and practical help for those who engage in all types of impulse-related behaviors. With compelling firsthand stories, analyses of groundbreaking new treatments, and deep empathy for people affected by these behaviors, the authors present a powerful and pioneering self-help guide that provides answers to these and other essential questions:

  • What are impulse control disorders?
  • How do I know if I or someone I care about has an impulse control disorder?
  • Why are some people more impulsive than others?
  • What medical and therapeutic treatments are available?
  • Where can I find help?

The first of its kind, this authoritative guide breaks the silence that has surrounded a long-misunderstood illness, providing much-needed help for the millions who experience impulse control behaviors and those who love them.

Pathological gambling . . . Compulsive shopping . . . Kleptomania . . . Compulsive sexual behavior . . .

We all engage in behaviors we know aren't good for us--buying too many lottery tickets, treating ourselves to an expensive item we know we can't afford, or taking the towels home from the hotel to remember a vacation. For most of us, behaviors such as these are fleeting fancies, but for many people, such urges--to gamble, shop, steal, and more--can be consuming. Day after day, millions of Americans struggle with irresistible impulses that can affect both their family and career life.

For years, impulse control problems remained invisible in the public consciousness while countless people suffered in silence. Now, in this one-of-a-kind guide, the nation's leading specialists in impulse control disorders bring the problem to light. Filled with in-depth case studies, practical questionnaires that allow you to identify these disorders, and invaluable information on the latest treatments, this book offers new hope for those engaging in these behaviors and the people who love them.

"Nearly everyone has a friend, relative, or acquaintance whose life is touched by an impulse control disorder. . . . We wrote this book to provide understanding and help for those who suffer from, and for those who treat, impulse control disorders."--from the Introduction

About the Author:

Dr. Jon Grant and Dr. Suck Won Kim direct the Impulse Control Disorders Clinic at the University of Minnesota Department of Psychiatry. Their patient population includes people suffering from pathological gambling disorder, kleptomania, compulsive shopping, compulsive sexual behavior, skin picking, and trichotillomania. Dr. Grant and Kim have conducted some of the pioneering work in the pharmacotherapy of pathological gambling and compulsive shopping. They have been asked to present their work at numerous medical conferences, including the annual meetings of the American Psychiatric Association and the Obsessive Compulsive Foundation. Their work on pathological gambling has also been featured in local as well as national and international news publications. Dr. Grant, lead author, received his J.D. from Cornell University, his M.D. from Brown University, and an advanced degree in public health from Harvard University. He has been interviewed by numerous news agencies including National Public Radio, the BBC, and USA Today. His work has even drawn the attention of Jay Leno and Saturday Night Live. Dr. Grant will be featured in an HBO special on stealing to be aired in fall 2001, in which he will discuss the problem of kleptomania, legal implications of this illness, and his work treating this disorder.

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