From the blog, “Aggression disorder linked to greater risk of substance abuse,” was posted on 3-2-17.  This article summarizes findings published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry from a study of over 9,200 subjects.

The study focused on potential associations between Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED) and substance abuse, and found “as the severity of aggressive behavior increased, so did levels of daily and weekly substance use.” And, “The findings suggest that a history of frequent, aggressive behavior is a risk factor for later substance abuse, and effective treatment of aggression could delay or even prevent substance abuse in young people.”  Also, “Previous research has implied that aggressive behavior in IED is due to the presence of other psychiatric disorders, such as anxiety or depression. But the new (snip) study found no such relationship. While substance abuse, like excessive drinking, can clearly make aggressive behavior worse, the onset of IED almost always precedes the development of chronic substance abuse.”

The authors of the study concluded, “early psychological intervention, medication and cognitive therapy are the most effective treatments to prevent, or at least delay, substance abuse problems in adolescents diagnosed with IED.”

mhconcierge’s take:  This information supports early intervention and referrals for children and teens with IED.

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