Oppositional Defiant Disorder

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Not just angry – far more complex

Oppositional defiant disorder or ODD as it is known is a disruptive behavior disorder in children and teenagers.

Whilst my experience is limited it is generally played out with patterns of unruly and argumentative behavior and hostile attitudes toward authority figures.

I have seen children run out of school and act violently to other pupils. I have also had one child spit in my face and seen a teacher bitten.

The child may well scream and shout, hide under tables, have huge tantrums but like any other child can be scared and upset and it makes your hurt to see these young people so lost.

It is also difficult to recognise and some parents may find it difficult to recognize ODD, thinking they simply have a stubborn, emotional, or strong-willed child.

The behavior of a child with ODD is much more extreme and disruptive than normal but quite how you measure that is undetermined.

How is it diagnosed?

Probably when the parents or school are at their wits end.

When a child or teenager constantly behaves in extremely negative, hostile, and defiant ways that disrupt their home, school, and social lives and continues for at least six months. Symptoms appear as early as the late preschool years.

Children with ODD usually direct their anger, resentment, and spiteful behavior toward their parents, teachers, or other authority figures, though they may also have problems with their children particularity in their own age range and within their class.

This is incredibly hard work for both Teacher and Teaching Assistant. Parents will end up being involved along with the SENCo and Educational psychologist.

The reasons for this behaviour is not clear cut but it may be a mix of biological, social, and psychological factors appears to put children at risk.

It could be poverty, bad or abusive parenting, personal trauma, behavioral disorder, harsh discipline at home or other family instabilities. So one of these, some of these.all of these or none of these.

At least one study found that ODD symptoms are worse in children who struggle with peer acceptance in addition to family issues.

Treatment is very difficult as many children with ODD have coexisting conditions, such as mood or anxiety disorders, ADHD, learning disorders, or language disorders, it is important to determine whether this is the case, or if the child’s poor behavior is simply in response to a temporary situation.

Once the condition or situation is established, the appropriate course of treatment can begin. A combination of therapies is generally used to treat ODD, including behavioral and family therapies, parental training, and sometimes medication. In addition to treating the child, therapy attempts to rebuild the parent-child relationship and teach parents new techniques for dealing with the child’s behavior. Treatment is essential, and the earlier the better to help prevent ODD from developing into a more serious conduct disorder, mental health disorder, or criminal behavior.

You can find further information here ADDitude


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