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Overview of Disruptive Behavior Disorders

All children tend to misbehave from time to time. Yet when the misbehavior becomes constant and excessive, there comes a point where it can start to become a serious problem for a child and his or her family and school. Disruptive Behavior Disorder is the term used to describe these situations. The two main kinds of Disruptive Behavior Disorders are Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder describes children and adolescents who are constantly challenging and defying rules and authority in ways that range from obnoxious to hostile.

Conduct Disorder goes one step further, for here the child or adolescent is acting maliciously, deceitfully, aggressively and violently, and seems to have no qualms about violating the rights of others.

The causes of these disorders are complex and not fully understood. These conditions tend to run a course that can last for years, and are also risk markers for ongoing mental health problems in adulthood. About a third of youths with Oppositional Defiant Disorder eventually develop Conduct Disorder, and about a third of these individuals go on to develop Antisocial Personality Disorder as adults. Treatments for Disruptive Behavior Disorders have the best chances of succeeding when the conditions are diagnosed early.



Conduct Disorder