Every child might be oppositional from time to time, especially when they might be hungry, upset, tired, or stressed. They might throw tantrums, argue, disobey, talkback and defy any elderly person including parents, teachers, and others. Although such behaviors are a normal part of growing up for kids who are 2-3 years old and early adolescents, certain openly uncooperative and hostile behavior becomes a thing of concern or a sign of a behavioral disorder when it gets frequent and so consistent that it stands out when compared to kids of the same age group. It could also affect the child’s family, school and social life.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) is a behavioral disorder diagnosed in children who are uncooperative, defiant and hostile towards their peers, elders and authority figures.

Here are some important facts about ODD parents should be aware of:

  1. One to sixteen percent of all kids of the school-going age and adolescents have ODD. Children with ODD are found more rigid and demanding compared to their peers and siblings.
  2. Sometimes, ODD might be present in a child who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and learning disabilities. It is important to look for such conditions if you feel your child exhibits ODD symptoms since it might be difficult to improve ODD symptoms without treating those if any.
  3. There are medications that can help manage some of the most distressing symptoms of ODD as well as coexisting conditions like ADHD, anxiety or mood disorders.
  4. Treatment options for ODD include parent management training, individual psychotherapy, family psychotherapy, cognitive problem-solving skills training, social skills training, etc.
  5. Raising a child with ODD can be very difficult. Seek help from your friends and family to get support and understanding. Also, try to manage your own stress levels by making healthy life choices including exercise and relaxation techniques.
  6. Most kids with ODD respond well to positive parenting techniques. So, find out from your child’s pediatrician, psychiatrist or a qualified mental health professional who can guide you on those positive parenting techniques such as positive reinforcement, setting boundaries, taking a time-out for misbehavior, etc.
disobedient child OpenClipart-vectors, pixabay