Psychology of Impulsivity: New Research


Series: Psychology of Emotions, Motivations and Actions

Impulsivity is a primary feature of many psychiatric conditions and often leads to maladaptive behaviors in nonclinical populations. This predisposition to rapid, unplanned actions and a disregard for future, negative consequences leads to seemingly irrational and self-defeating behaviours including substance abuse, pathological gambling, binge eating, and self-harm. Even in young children, impulsivity can have detrimental and long-lasting effects: deficits in impulse control predict poor academic performance and are correlated with behavioural, social, and emotional problems.

This book provides an up-to-date overview of research in impulsivity from personality theories through cognitive and biological mechanisms to genetic markers. It also reviews current theories on factors that precipitate the emergence of impulsive behaviors, such as early adversity or learned contingencies. Topics include the development of assessment tools to identify impulsivity in vulnerable populations, conceptualization of impulsivity within a personality prototype model, and identification of disorders in which impulsivity leads to suicide-related behaviors. This broad psychosocial perspective helps to explain how impulsive tendencies develop and how these are exacerbated in certain conditions.

Most importantly, factors that mediate the relationship between impulsivity and maladaptive behaviors such as aggression, excessive drug use, or self-injury are discussed throughout the book. Many of the authors present new ideas for the remediation and therapy of impulse control disorders; the final chapter discusses exciting advances from proof of concept studies exploring non invasive brain stimulation as a treatment for neurocognitive impairments associated with impulsivity. Overall, the integration of data from behavioural, biological, social, and environmental studies takes research in impulsivity to a new level. For the reader, the novel theoretical perspectives presented in this book will lead to a more thorough understanding of the relationship between impulsivity and behavioural disorders. (Imprint: Nova)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 – Impulsivity, Problem-Solving, and Suicide: Assessment and Treatment Considerations in the Context of Scientific Literature (pp. 1-20)
Kari Koss, Laura L. Neely, Jennifer Tucker, Marcus VanSickle and Marjan Ghahramanlou-Holloway (Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS), Department of Medical & Clinical Psychology, Laboratory for the Treatment of Suicide-Related Ideation and Behavior, Department of Medical and Clinical Psychology, Bethesda, Maryland, US)

Chapter 2 – Halo Effect of Student Misbehavior on Teacher Ratings of Impulsivity and Other Executive Function Deficits (pp. 21-32)
David Álvarez-García, Trinidad García and Paloma González-Castro (Department of Psychology, University of Oviedo, Spain)

Chapter 3 – DAPP-BQ Personality Prototypes in a General Psychiatric Inpatient Population: Associations with Symptom Expression and Treatment Indicators (pp. 33-48)
Tim Bastiaens, Laurence Claes, Eva Ceulemans, Dominique Vanwalleghem and Marc De Hert (UPC KU Leuven Campus Kortenberg, Belgium)

Chapter 4 – Differential Role of Impulsivity in Adolescents‘ Suicidal Behavior with Borderline Personality Disorder and Major Depression (pp. 49-60)
Daniel Serrani Azcurra (Faculty of Psychology, National University of Rosario, Argentina)

Chapter 5 – Impulsive Behaviors that Distract from Distress: Non-Suicidal Self-Injury (pp. 61-76)
Elizabeth N. Riley, Jessica L. Combs, Heather A. Davis and Gregory T. Smith (Dept. of Psychology, and Veterans Affairs Medical Centre, Psychology Service, University of Kentucky, Kentucky, US)

Chapter 6 – Impulsive Action and Impulsive Inaction: Toward an Integrative Theory of Impulsivity (pp. 77-92)
Leila Guller, Lauren Boyle, Nichea S. Spillane and Gregory T. Smith (Dept. of Psychology, University of Kentucky, Kentucky, US and others)

Chapter 7 – Biomarkers of Impulsivity (pp. 93-140)
Dubravka Svob Strac, Matea Nikolac Perkovic, Gordana Nedic Erjavec, Evelyn Kiive, Katarina Dodig Curkovic, Mario Curkovic, Dubravka Kocijan Hercigonja, Jaanus Harro, Dorotea Muck-Seler and Nela Pivac (Division of Molecular Medicine, Rudjer Boskovic Institute, Zagreb, Croatia and others)

Chapter 8 – Impulse Control Disorders: Prospect for Treatment Using Noninvasive Brain Stimulation (pp. 141-160)
Maya Dickler, Antoine Hone-Blanchet and Shirley Fecteau (Centre Interdisciplinaire de Recherche en Réadaptation et Intégration Sociale, Centre de Recherche Universitaire en Santé Mentale de Québec, Medical School, Laval University, Canada)


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