Monday, January 9, 2012

Oppositional Defiant Disorder Research Paper

Oppositional Defiant Disorder Research Paper

Before giving the exact definition of the notion oppositional disorder, we should not forget all children are from time to time hungry, stressed or simply upset and not satisfied and thus can conduct themselves oppositionally, with includes talking back, disobeying parents and teachers and other adults. This is to be considered a normal part of development of a child, but constant hostile behavior might become a concern, as soon as it becomes vivid in comparison with other children who are of the same age and level of development.

The American Psychiatric Association defines oppositional defiant disorder as: “recurrent pattern of negativistic, defiant, disobedient, and hostile behavior toward authority figures that persists for at least 6 months. Behaviors included in the definition are the following: losing one’s temper; arguing with adults; actively defying requests; refusing to follow rules; deliberately annoying other people; blaming others for one’s own mistakes or misbehavior; being touchy, easily annoyed or angered, resentful, spiteful, or vindictive.” (Barlow J, Stewart-Brown S: Behavior problems and group-based parent education programs. J Dev Behav Pediatr 2000 p.2). Such kind of behavior does cause difficulties with family and friends; oppositional behavior is usually the same at home and at school. Sometimes oppositional behavior can be a forerunner of conduct disorder.


Certain criteria were worked out, which are defining conduct and oppositional defiant disorder. For conduct disorder they are the following: 
  1. Aggression to people and animals (is able to initiate physical fight, threatens others, is physically cruel to others); 
  2. Devastation of property (setting a fire, doping harm to other’s property on purpose). 
  3. Telling lies or stealing something (is able to lie to obtain something or to avoid obligations); 
  4. Serious breaking the rules (running away from home, playing truant from school).

And the following criteria were worked out for oppositional defiant disorder: 
  1. Hostile and defiant behavior, which lasted not less than six months and with at least four of these characteristics: loosing temper and arguing with others rather often, refusing to obey the requests of adults, annoying other people, blaming others for his/her mistakes, get easily annoyed by others, being angry and vindictive. Here again should be stressed that all these characteristics are applicable only in case if such kind of behavior is met more often than among other individuals of the same age and level of development. 
  2. This behavior inevitably causes worsening of social and academic occupations. 
  3. Characteristics are not met for conduct disorder. 

It is no wonder that children, who had such kind of problems are more likely to take them into their grown-up life and start using alcohol of drugs, have poor personal life and career achievements, poor health, girls tend to become early mothers and single parents. Treating Conduct Disorder and Oppositional Defiant Disorder is sophisticated and needs much effort and skills. It can not be called an easy task to find a way to child’s soul and most intimate thoughts as he usually behaves uncooperative and feels mistrust to others, especially adults. Treatment should not be one sided, the best way would be to create a combination of psychological and medical interference. There are several techniques of psychological treatment. Parents do play an important role in the child’s life and thus it is believed that treatment should also include improving parents, but it should never be done separately from the child. Children, whose parents did their best to participate in treatment procedures, showed better results, than those whose parents were less cooperative. Very close to this way of treatment is so called “dyadic skills training”, the main idea of which is that the result of antisocial behavior of children is bad care-giving during early childhood. This dyadic treatment “consists of 12 to 18 one hour sessions designed for pre-school age children and their parents. During treatment, the clinician teaches the parents about children’s social, cognitive, and emotional development” (Forehand R, McMahon RJ: Helping the Non-Compliant Child: A Clinician’s Guide to Parent Training. New York, NY: Guilford Press; 1981 p. 10-36).

Family therapy results in improving the communication within the family, to make it open and honest, bring clarification for the family roles. This therapy is believed to be useful for children, who have not conducted any kind of serious problems, like running away from home or stealing. As peers play an important role in child’s development, there’s another method, called “group therapy”, which helps to maximize the contact prosocial peers instead of deviant ones.

Most researches think that psychopharmacological treatment alone can not an effective method of treating conduct disorder and oppositional defiant disorder, but on the other hand medication can be an effective means of treating some symptoms.

Overall, it is unfortunately the result of researches that such disorders are a part of our life and children are very often the victims of poor up - brining or bad social conditions and surrounding, and parents and other adults are to know about such kind of disorders and are to take all possible steps to help the child to overcome them.
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