Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) is diagnosed in children and adolescents ranging in age from 6 to 18 years old. The primary feature of the disorder is recurrent and intense temper outbursts that are not proportionate to the situation that provoked them. Additionally, children and adolescents with DMDD appear irritable or angry most of the time between temper outbursts. DMDD is a relatively newly recognized disorder and best practices for treatment are still being developed. The disorder became recognized as research demonstrated that many children with these symptoms were incorrectly diagnosed with other disorders, such as Bipolar Disorder. Despite being a new category, therapists have been treating related problems related to DMDD, such as emotional dysregulation and irritability, for decades, and these same practices can be applied in therapy with DMDD. Additionally, parents can benefit from parental training in which they learn how best to manage their children’s behavior. Parents may also wish to enter therapy for themselves to discuss the stress and other complications caused by their child’s diagnosis.
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