By: Dr Carla Kesrouani April 4, 2023 no comments


Have you ever experienced an intense urge to steal something that you don’t need or even want? Do you feel a sense of gratification or relief after stealing, followed by feelings of guilt and shame? If so, you may be suffering from kleptomania.

What is Kleptomania?

Kleptomania is a mental disorder characterized by an irresistible urge to steal items that are not needed for personal use or for their monetary value. People with this disorder often experience tension before committing the theft and feel a sense of relief or gratification afterward. Moreover, it is a type of impulse control disorder and can be very difficult to overcome without proper treatment.

Symptoms of Kleptomania

The symptoms of kleptomania can vary from person to person. However, some common symptoms include:

  • An intense urge to steal,
  • Feeling a sense of relief or gratification after stealing,
  • Feeling guilty or ashamed after stealing,
  • Stealing items that are not needed or wanted,
  • Stealing items that have little or no monetary value,
  • Repeatedly stealing from the same store or location,
  • Difficulty resisting the urge to steal, even when the consequences are severe.

Negative Effects of Kleptomania

Kleptomania can have a number of negative effects on a person’s life. These can include:

Legal problems

People with this problem may be arrested and charged with theft, which can lead to fines, jail time, and a criminal record.

Relationship problems

Stealing can strain relationships with family and friends, who may not understand why the person is stealing.

Financial problems

If a person with kleptomania is caught stealing, they may be required to pay fines or restitution, which can lead to financial difficulties.

Emotional problems

The guilt and shame associated with stealing can lead to depression, anxiety, and other emotional problems.

Treatment for Kleptomania

Treatment typically involves a combination of therapy and medication. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) often helps people with kleptomania identify the triggers that lead to their stealing behavior and learn new coping strategies to resist the urge to steal. Medications such as antidepressants or mood stabilizers may also be used to help manage the symptoms of kleptomania.

In some cases, group therapy or support groups may also help people with this issue. These groups can provide a safe and supportive environment for people to discuss their experiences and learn from others who are going through similar struggles.


In conclusion, kleptomania is a serious mental disorder that can have a number of negative effects on a person’s life. However, with the right treatment, it is possible to manage the symptoms of this disorder and live a happy and fulfilling life. Therefore, if you or someone you know is struggling with kleptomania, it is important to seek help as soon as possible. With the right support, recovery is possible.



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