Childrens Behavior Problems

By: Debra Sale Wendler

ADHD alone is difficult to deal with, but ADHD comorbid (or combined) with ODD (oppositional defiant disorder) creates chaos.

If your child periodically talks back defiantly, slams doors, acts stubborn, and blows up but has some control to calm himself down, feel remorse, and accept consoling and logical explanations, he does not have ODD.

What is ODD?

If your child is hot-headed, gets angry frequently, loses his temper, is spiteful and vindictive, deliberately annoys people around him (at home and school alike), argues with adults, defies you, and refuses to carry out rules and adults' requests, be forewarned.

If he is easily annoyed by others and overreacts to remarks by others, but never owns up to his mistakes because they are always somebody's fault, this is a kid with full-fledged ODD.

This is not a phase that will pass. He cannot control these behaviors. He does not feel remorse for causing the hurt feelings and chaos in his environment.

He definitely needs treatment and may need additional medication (beyond what is prescribed for ADHD).

What Causes ODD?

ODD rarely travels alone. Frustrated from harsh adult reactions to his characteristics, a child with ADHD will often develop ODD as a defense mechanism against adults. This is why 65% of children with ADHD develop ODD.

The child with ODD opposes adults because he had a bad experience in the past caused by adults' poor judgment. In his opinion, adults are not to be trusted. He believes he is smarter than adults so he trusts only his instincts, opinions, and observations.

To feel safe, he schemes to control, dominate, and manipulate his environment. He believes he is the only one who can take care of his welfare so he thinks only of one thing, "What's my payoff?"

How to Change Your Child with ODD

Now that you know the "thinking errors" of defiant children, you need to adopt new ways to cope with and solve your child's behavior problems.

To change your child with ODD, you need to do the following: *Provide structureto make his environment orderly and predictable. *Talk and act assertivelyGive short instructions and responses. This one technique will cut down on screaming and yelling in the house. Learn proper child discipline for children with ODD. *Tell him how you expect him to behave. Be his model. Train the values you want him to demonstrate. *Set up a token system (behavior chart)to convince him he is being paid for improved behavior.

You CAN Solve This

It sounds simple and it is if you can find the right guide with sound parenting advice. If you are ready to adopt new ways to cope with and change your child, I invite you to use these parenting tips to get started.

Kids and Teens
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