Information for the public

What treatment should I be offered for antisocial personality disorder?

What treatment should I be offered for antisocial personality disorder?

Some treatments may not be suitable for you, depending on your exact circumstances. If you have questions about specific treatments and options, please talk to a member of your healthcare team.

You may be offered psychological treatment in order to help you with problems such as impulsive and antisocial behaviour, and if you have problems relating to other people. Psychological treatment can help you to make positive changes to your thought processes and your behaviour.

If you have a history of offending behaviour, you may be offered a psychological treatment (such as one called 'reasoning and rehabilitation') that can help you to reduce offending and other antisocial behaviour. People with very serious and extreme symptoms (such as psychopathy and severe personality disorder) may also be offered this treatment.

You should be given support and encouragement to attend your meetings for psychological treatment and to complete the course. The treatment should be offered in a group with other people with similar problems, but a healthcare professional should also see you regularly on your own so that you can discuss how your treatment is progressing.

Help for young offenders

The evidence shows that psychological treatments for adults with antisocial personality disorder can also help young offenders (aged 17 years and younger) who are in care to reduce offending behaviour. The treatments should take place in a group of young people with similar problems.

Young offenders should be offered an appointment with mental health services for adults when they reach an appropriate age to assess whether they need treatment.

Should I be offered medication?

You should not usually be offered medication just to treat antisocial personality disorder or for any related symptoms or behaviour, such as aggression, anger and impulsive behaviour. This is because there is no evidence that medication helps to relieve the symptoms of antisocial personality disorder and it may cause side effects.

However, you may be offered medication if you have other conditions, such as depression and anxiety (see 'Can I receive treatments for other conditions?').