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What Is The Best Treatment For Oppositional Defiant Disorder?

ODD i.e. Oppositional Defiant Disorder refers to a condition, where a child often displays ongoing pattern related to irritable or angry mood, argumentative or defiant type of behavior and vindictiveness towards their parents, teachers and other people belonging to the authority. The behavior of a child may even result in the disruption of his/her regular activities, including the activities he/she does with the family members and at the school.

Most of the children suffering from oppositional defiant disorder experience other behavioral problems. These include learning disabilities, attention deficit types of disorders, mood disorders, including depression and anxiety disorders. A few of the children with this problem may develop a severe form of behavioral disorder referred to as conduct disorder.(1)

What Is The Best Treatment For Oppositional Defiant Disorder?

Treatment to cure the problem of the oppositional defiant type of disorder depends on various factors. These include the age of a child; severity associated with the underlying symptoms of a child and the ability of a child to take part and tolerate specific treatment or therapy programs. The treatment mainly consists of a combination of the mentioned procedures-

Medication: Depending on the condition of a child, doctors may sometimes recommend a few of the common drugs to treat various oppositional defiant disorder symptoms. These are drugs to treat irritability and impulsivity, depression and other types of mental illnesses.

Psychotherapy: Psychotherapy is a type of counseling treatment and it aims at assisting your child to develop highly effective problem-solving skills and coping skills to come up with various ways to control and express anger.(2)

Parent And Authority Training: Your child’s psychiatrist or any other mental health expert with experience in the treatment of oppositional defiant disorder may help parents develop certain parenting skills. These skills are less frustrating, positive and highly consistent for your child and you as well. In some of the cases, your affected child, teachers or other family members may take part in the training with you to allow each of the family members in developing shared goals to deal with different types of problems. The main objective behind involving authority figures in the family or across your child, especially the teachers in the training program is an essential part of the treatment.

Parent-Child Interaction Training: Unlike the previous one, parent child-interaction training involves the interaction of the affected child with his/her mother, father or caregiver. According to this therapy or training, a therapist will sit behind a type of one-way mirror and use an audio device to guide parents in following different strategies to reinforce the positive behavior of the child. Hence, the therapy gives enough chance for parents to learn effective parenting training to improve their relations with the child and reduces problem-related behaviors.

Cognitive Problem-Solving Training: Cognitive problem-solving training or therapy aims to help your child in identifying and changing various thought patterns, which result in behavioral problems. In collaborative or cognitive problem solving, your child and you work together to develop solutions, which will be better to bring improvement in oppositional defiant disorder symptoms and problems.

Individual Therapy and Family Therapy: Individual therapy may assist your child to learn to manage feelings of anger and healthily express them. Family therapy may help you to improve your relations and communication, while help family members in working together.

Social Skills Training: Lastly, your child undergoes social skills training therapy to become highly flexible and learn ways to interact positively and effectively with his or her peers.(3)


To conclude, we should say that treatment to cure or deal with the symptoms of the oppositional defiant disorder depends on the existing condition of the affected children and the way, in which parents deal with them.


Also Read:

Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Sheetal DeCaria, M.D. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:May 2, 2020

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