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Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder

Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMMD) is a fairly new mental health disorder, introduced into the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition. Most notably, children with DMDD present with ongoing temper tantrums, demonstrate poor frustration tolerance, and may be aggressive toward themselves, others, or property. Even when temper outbursts subside, children and adolescents with DMDD typically present with a low-grade intensity of irritability or cranky mood that is observable most of the time. As a result, children with DMDD typically experience conflict with family members, peers, and the academic environment. Children with DMDD might also experience numerous psychiatric hospitalizations for suicidal behaviors, self-injury, or extreme behavioral instability. DMDD is a diagnosis of childhood (diagnosed in children ages 6-10), and many children also experience difficulties in identifying emotional states, impulsivity, and sensory aversions.

A combination of psychotherapy and medication management might be helpful in treating DMDD symptoms. Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Children (DBT-C) demonstrates promising treatment outcomes for reduction of DMMD symptoms. If left untreated, youth with DMDD may go on to experience higher levels of anxiety, depression, and interpersonal difficulties in adulthood. More information about DMDD, please visit Quick Facts on Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) | Child Mind Institute.

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