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Emotional and behavioural disorders in children

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  1. Introduction.
  2. The expression 'behavioural disorder'.
    1. Diagnosis.
    2. The deliberate destruction of property as a characteristic behaviour.
    3. Diagnosis during early childhood.
  3. The types of adolescent-onsets.
    1. The onset of one criterion characteristic of conduct disorder before age 10.
    2. The absence of conduct disorder prior to age 10.
  4. The onset of behavioural disorder.
  5. The risk factors identified.
  6. Evidence from research into causes of conduct disorders.
  7. Divorce, marital distress, and violence.
    1. The inter-parental conflicts surrounding divorce.
    2. The effect of marital conflict on the child.
    3. Parent-child interactions and different family characteristics.
  8. Psycho-physiological and genetic influences.
    1. Child training.
    2. Family intervention.
    3. School and community education.
    4. School based programs.
  9. Conclusion.
  10. Bibliography.

Most early years practitioners, child carers and parents report have some behaviour related problems with children at some time or another. However, the "behaviour disorder" label may only be warranted if those behaviours are persistent and impinge on the basic rights of others, if major age-appropriate societal norms are violated, or if there is significant impairment in everyday functioning at home or school. The aim of this essay is to examine in detail the types and criteria of behaviour disorder, the course and causes of the disorder and considers some appropriate management approaches.

[...] Webster-Stratton and Dahl suggested that depressed and irritable mothers indirectly cause behaviour problems in their children through inconsistent limit setting, emotional unavailability, and reinforcement of inappropriate behaviours through negative attention (Webster-Stratton & Dahl, 2001). Divorce, Marital Distress, and Violence play major role in children's development. The inter-parental conflicts surrounding divorce have been associated with the development of behavioural disorder. However, it has been noted that although some single parents and their children become chronically depressed and report increased stress levels after separation, others do relatively well. [...]

[...] The comorbidity of ADHD in a community sample of children aged 6 through 16 years. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 365-378. Forgatch, M. (1989). Patterns and outcome in family problem solving: The disrupting effect of negative emotions. Journal of Marriage and the Family 115-124. Kazdin, A. (1999). Treatment of antisocial behaviour in children: Current status and future directions. Psychological Bulletin 187-203. Kazdin, A. (2000). Prevention of conduct disorder. Birmingham: Open Press Klein, R.G. (2003). Long Term outcome of hyperactive children: A review . [...]

[...] Research supports the notion that parents of conduct disordered children have underlying deficits in certain fundamental parenting skills. The development of effective parenting skills has been considered as the primary mechanism for change in child conduct disorder, through the reduction of the severity, duration and manifestation of the disorder (Webster-Stratton & Dahl, 1995) A number of parent training programs have been developed to increase parenting skills. Research indicates that the parent training programs have been positive, indicating significant changes in parents' and children's behaviour and parental perception of child adjustment (Webster-Stratton & Dahl, 1995). [...]

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