Children with ODD Can Learn Strategies to Reduce Physical Aggression

Kids with ODD need to face consequences for their behavior.

Kids with ODD need to face consequences for their behavior.

Managing the behavior of a child with Oppositional Defiant Disorder can be a very challenging task. But like other children, kids with ODD can be taught aggressive behavior brings negative consequences. Parent follow-through is a key part of this lesson.

by Kimberly Abraham and Marney Studaker-Cordner

[From Psych Central]

Is your oppositional defiant child hitting, slapping, kicking or using other physical force? Are you worried that his or her violence is out of control? Handling an oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child’s aggression can be scary, stressful, and exhausting for parents.

If you’re having trouble with your child, know that there are ways you can manage violent child behavior effectively.

Many parents we see in therapy come in when their children have started making fists at them, threatening to punch a wall, or have already gone full-throttle into physical aggression. They throw their hands in the air and wonder what’s next and how to stop it.

The thing about children with oppositional defiant disorder is that they haven’t learned healthy ways to deal with their emotions. It is extremely hard for them to cope, so as parents we must teach them more effective ways to manage emotional challenges.

Think of it as your child having a toolbox. They begin life with an empty box and fill it will tools (coping skills) as they grow and experience situations. Some children need different tools than others, especially ODD children. They are always quick to go for the hammer! You can help your child find other tools to use by teaching him what to use and when.

Conflict is a normal part of life. Sometimes it occurs more than we’d like. Did your child throw tantrums at a young age, kicking and screaming on the ground?

Read more at What to Do When Your ODD Child Turns Violent.

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