Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD)

What is DMDD?

Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder is a relatively common condition that affects children of different ages and, while not new, it was recently just recognized as a separate diagnosis.  This happened because many children who suffer the condition were misdiagnosed as having bipolar disorder, and some cases were not being treated with the right medication. 

Compared to others, children with DMDD are more prone to have depression, anxiety, or other mental disorders by the time they become adults. Also, children with DMDD tend to have poorer overall physical health.

What are the symptoms of DMDD in a child?

The first symptoms of the condition usually show between ages 6 and 10 and consist of recurring, explosive episodes of temper tantrums that are disproportionately longer and more intense  than the situation calls for; the child would then be irritable (“cranky”) or angry almost all day, on most days of the week, in between tantrums.

How is DMDD diagnosed?

The symptoms of children with of DMDD may look similar to the symptoms of bipolar disorder. This is why the diagnosis of DMDD needs a thorough evaluation of the child by a qualified mental health professional.  There are no lab tests that can tell if your child has DMDD or not, but they may be helpful in ruling out other conditions.  

In order for a child or teen to be diagnosed with DMDD, and after the doctor makes sure the child does not have another condition, they must have:

  • Severe and frequent emotional outbursts (temper tantrums) 
  • Chronic and persistent irritability or anger alternating with the temper tantrums 

Also, there are other things that can change the way the doctor looks at your child’s symptoms, such as, but not limited to:

  • Age when the problem started
  • The child’s current age
  • Situations or settings in which the symptoms appear or get worse
  • How often do the symptoms show up
  • How long do the symptoms last 

NovoTelehealth is composed of qualified healthcare providers who, besides being equipped to diagnose and recommend the most effective therapies, are a caring and compassionate group of people who will do a thorough evaluation of your child’s mental and physical health and will formulate a comprehensive, holistic treatment tailored to their individual needs.  

Treatment options for DMDD

It is common for people with DMDD to be treated with medication known as, but not limited to, antidepressants, and mood stabilizers, but medication is not the only treatment available, and in fact, treatment with medication alone is not enough to treat DMDD .  Your integrative team at Novo goes above and beyond to not only address your child’s DMDD , but also support their health in the most effective, comprehensive and holistic way. Some treatment options include:

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Psychotherapy
  • Behavior modification
  • Medication
  • Naturopathic medicine
  • Diet modification
  • Nutritional supplements
  • Mindfulness techniques

To know more about DMDD and how NovoTelehealth can support you and your family in living a happier, healthier life, book an appointment with us online or at one of our locations.

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