CHILDREN WITH OPPOSITIONAL DEFIANT DISORDER
What is oppositional defiant disorder (ODD)?
Oppositional behaviour is often normal part of development for two to three years old children and early adolescents. However, openly uncooperative and hostile behaviour becomes a serious concern when it is so frequent and consistent that it stands out when compared with other children of the same age and developmental level and when it affects the child’s social, family and academic life.
What are the symptoms of oppositional defiant disorder?
There are many symptoms you can find in ODD. There is an ongoing pattern of uncooperative, defiant, and hostile behaviour, excessive arguing with adults, frequent temper tantrums, blaming others for his or her mistakes or misbehavior, often being touchy or easily annoyed by others, frequent anger and resentment, seeking revenge, mean and hateful talking when upset. These all symptoms are usually seen in multiple setting, but may be more noticeable at home or at school.
How is oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) treated?
Treatment of ODD may include parent training programmes to help manage the child’s behaviour, Individual psychotherapy to develop more effective anger management, family psychotherapy to improve communication, cognitive behavioural therapy to assist problem solving and decrease negativity and social skills training to increase flexibility and improve frustration tolerance may be required.
With positive parenting techniques, many children with ODD will respond. Parents may ask their pediatrician or family physician to refer them to a child and adolescent psychiatrist, who can diagnose and treat ODD.
How should I as a parent deal with my child?
Give the child praise and positive reinforcement when he shows flexibility or cooperation. Take time out or break if you are about to make the conflict with your child worse. Pick your battles. Since the child with ODD has trouble avoiding power struggles, prioritize the thing you want your child to do. Maintain interests other than your child with ODD, so that managing your child doesn’t take all your time and energy. Try to work with and obtain support from the other adults (teachers, coaches and spouse) dealing with your child. Manage your own stress with exercise and relaxation. Use respite as needed.