Elementary Schoolers
Bullies & Cyber Bullying
Behavior Problems
Classroom-Student Behavior
Extracurricular Activities
Internet & Technology
Kids Health & Safety
Parenting Styles & Skills
Peer Pressure
Positive Discipline
Sibling Rivalry
Sleepovers & Bedtime

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)

Learning about Oppositional Defiant Disorder is important if you’re a parent seeing consistently defiant behavior from your child. As kids continue to grow older they tend to defy authority more than they used to. You might wish you could go back to the days when your child constantly followed you around the house wanting to be held and hugged. Unfortunately you can't go back in time, but you should realize that almost all children are defiant from time to time, whether they're in the "terrible twos" stage or they just turned nine years old. However, if you've noticed your child has developed a constant bad attitude and continues to defy authority, it may be time to take action.

ODD: When Bad Behavior Becomes Constant

When you begin to dread everyday activities with your child because of his constant and frequent bad behavior, you may want to look at the symptoms of Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). Children with ODD display a regular pattern of defiant, uncooperative, and sometimes hostile behavior toward authority figures, which can have a serious effect on their social, family and academic life. If you believe your child is at risk for Oppositional Defiant Disorder, read the additional symptoms below.

Symptoms of Oppositional Defiant Disorder

  • Excessive temper tantrums
  • Argumentativeness with adults
  • Easily frustrated and/or annoyed
  • Spiteful or vengeful behavior
  • Aggressiveness towards other kids
  • Questioning rules often
  • Active defiance to comply with rules and requests
  • Blaming others for their mistakes
  • Mean and hateful talk when upset
  • Swearing or the use of obscene language
  • Deliberately trying to annoy and upset others
  • Frequent anger outbursts
  • Academic problems

What Causes ODD Behavior?

The exact cause of Oppositional Defiant Disorder is not known, however a variety of biological, environmental, and genetic factors may contribute to its onset. According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 1 to 16 percent of all school-aged children and adolescents have ODD. If your child's defiant behavior has lasted more than six months and you're concerned, seek help from a family therapist, a doctor, or a child behavioral expert. There are a variety of different ODD treatment options available to combat this disorder and most of them don't involve the use of medication. The earlier Oppositional Defiant Disorder can be managed, the higher the chance of reversing its effects.