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|Psychological disorders are sometimes the result of chemical imbalances in the brain. The frontal lobe of the brain is thought to provide impulse control.|
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- Substance abuse, such as alcoholism and drug abuse
- Eating disorders, such as anorexia and bulimia
- Other impulse control disorders
- Having a family history of the condition
- Having a brain injury
- A repeated inability to resist impulses to steal things that are not of personal value
- A feeling of relief, joy, and/or pleasure when stealing things
- Feeling of guilt or remorse after the event
- Thefts that are not committed out of anger or revenge
- Lack of a better explanation for the theft, such as another psychological disorder
- Motivated by the stolen item's usefulness or monetary value
- The result of a dare, an act of rebellion, or a rite of passage
- All of the symptoms of kleptomania are present
- There is no other, better explanation for repeated thefts
- Kleptomania is not an excuse for shoplifting or ordinary theft
Counseling or Therapy
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Behavior modification therapy
- Family therapy
American Psychiatric Association http://www.psych.org
Mental Health America http://www.nmha.org
Canadian Psychiatric Association http://www.cpa-apc.org
Canadian Psychological Association http://www.cpa.ca
Aboujaoude E, Gamel N, Koran L. Overview of kleptomania and phenomenological description of 40 patients. Prim Care Companion. J Clin Psychiatry. 2004;6(6):244-247.
The Columbia Encyclopedia. 6th ed. New York, NY: Columbia University Press; 2001.
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. 4th ed. American Psychiatric Association; 1994.
Kuzma JM, Black DW. Compulsive disorders. Curr Psychiatry Rep. 2004 Feb;6(1):58-65.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 08/2014
- Update Date: 00/93/2013