How is antisocial personality disorder treated?

Psychotherapy is the treatment of choice for antisocial personality disorder. Psychotherapy is a type of individual counseling that focuses on changing a person’s thinking (cognitive therapy) and behavior (behavioral therapy). Group and family therapy might also be helpful. Family therapy can increase understanding among family members of people with antisocial personality disorder. Group therapy is most beneficial if it is tailored to people with antisocial personality disorder. A person with the disorder might be more comfortable discussing his or her feelings and behaviors with individuals who face similar problems and issues.

Although medication is not used to treat the antisocial personality disorder itself, it might be used to help stabilize mood swings or treat some of the distressing symptoms of the disorder, such as impulsivity and violent aggressiveness.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 11/20/2017.

References

  • American Psychiatric Association. Chapter 69. Antisocial Personality Disorder. In: Meloy J. Reid and Yakeley Jessica, eds. Gabbard’s Treatments of Psychiatric Disorders, Fifth Edition. May 2014. Accessed: 11/22/2017.
  • Janowsky D. Chapter 30. Personality Disorders. In: Ebert MH, Loosen PT, Nurcombe B, Leckman JF. eds. CURRENT Diagnosis & Treatment: Psychiatry, 2e. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2008.
  • Gibbon S, Duggan C, Stoffers J, et al. Psychological interventions for antisocial personality disorder. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2010, Issue 6.

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