Oppositional Defiant Disorder Defined


Oppositional Defiant Disorder or ODD is a behavioral disorder where the child shows continuing aggression, many outbursts, and irritates others.

Any child can have ODD, but this disorder is far more common in children that have ADD or ADHD.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)

Children with ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder) have tantrums far beyond a “normal” tantrum and respond minimally to authority and directions given to them.

A child with ODD may become;

  • Violent
  • Angry
  • Disruptive

These behaviors are usually always directed towards the adult’s authority figures in the child’s life. Conflict will be something the child enjoys and thrives off of even though this conflict may exhaust them.

Girls that have Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) may have different symptoms than boys.

Boys with ODD have more aggression and explosive behaviors. A girl with ODD will typically have behaviors such as lying, and very passive aggressive behaviors.

This disorder is usually diagnosed in early childhood. There is a chance that some children may move beyond the disorder by age eight or nine.

Tired Of The Endless Search For Answers?

Schedule A Free Consultation With A Special Education Expert Today!
Free Consultation

Types of Oppositional Defiant Disorder – ODD

Childhood Onset ODD-

This subset of ODD is present from an early age. If a child has childhood onset ODD, some interventions and treatments will help your child cope with this disorder may even stop the progression.

Adolescent Onset ODD-

This type of ODD will start in late middle school to early high school. If you notice a shift in your child’s behavior toward you and towards authority, there may be a chance that your child has adolescent-onset ODD.

Adult Onset ODD-

This form of ODD is less common but may become progressively worse, and the adult may develop an antisocial personality disorder. Even if the Oppositional Defiant Disorder does not worsen, it may cause problems with work and relationships.

People that have adult ODD are more likely to

  • Abuse Drugs and Alcohobuse drugs and alcohol,
  • Divorce
  • Get Fired From A Job
  • Display Physical Aggression Toward People They Love

Treatment for adult Oppositional Defiant Disorder usually involves therapy and medication.

Diagnosing Oppositional Defiant Disorder -ODD

The cause of ODD is not known, but doctors have determined common precipitating factors such as

  • ADHD
  • Conduct Disorder
  • Mood Disorder
  • Substance Abuse

Trauma can also cause a child to have oppositional tendencies. Trauma can be as severe as child abuse or as little as a childhood pet’s death. Each person sees traumatic event differently, yet these types of events can trigger ODD in some children.

If you believe that your child has ODD, the first task is to consult with the child’s physician.

The physician will then compile a family history, behavior history, and consult with close members of the child’s life.

The child’s physician will more than likely have family members, teachers and other confidants close to the child complete a rating scale and questionnaire to have a complete evaluation.

Treatment for Oppositional Defiant Disorder -ODD

Before a child gets treatment for ODD, you first must make sure that the child’s related condition is identified and under control.

These conditions may be;

  • ADHD
  • ADD
  • Anxiety
  • Various Mood Disorders

ODD is most commonly treated with psychotherapy and medication for the child. Parents may also be advised to take parenting classes to help them understand ODD and how to support a child with ODD.

ODD is not just when your child does not listen. It is a severe disorder that can affect your child’s ability to be a functional, productive adult in society.

If you believe your child has ODD consult with your physician to get the help your child needs to cope and live with this disorder!

Do you have experience with Oppositional Defiant Disorder? Please leave any feedback you have in the comments below!




Picture of Luke Dalien

Luke Dalien

Author Luke Dalien has spent his life dedicated to helping others break the chains of normal so that they may live fulfilled lives. When he’s not busy creating books aimed to bring a smile to the faces of children, he and his amazing wife, Suzie, work tirelessly on their joint passion; helping children with special needs reach their excellence. Together, they founded an online tutoring and resource company, SpecialEdResource.com. Poetry, which had been a personal endeavor of Luke’s for the better part of two decades, was mainly reserved for his beautiful wife, and their two amazing children, Lily and Alex. With several “subtle nudges” from his family, Luke finally decided to share his true passion in creativity with the world through his first children’s book series, “The Adventures Of The Silly Little Beaver."

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blog form headline-2 special ed resources