Oppositional Defiant Disorder Basics

Guides

ODD: Treatment

ODD is treatable, usually with behavioral therapy or a combination of behavioral intervention and medication.

Psychotherapeutic: A popular evidence-based treatment is a type of behavior therapy called parent-child interaction therapy. The parent and child work together through a set of exercises while a therapist coaches parents through an ear bud. Parents learn to increase positive interactions with the child and to set consistent consequences for undesirable behavior. Children learn to rein in behavior and enjoy a more supportive relationship with parents.

Pharmacological: Medicines are not specifically indicated for ODD. However, as many children with ODD have co-occurring conditions such as ADHD, they may be on medications for those other disorders. In addition, some children are so troubled by their own aggression, and their difficulties managing their painfully low frustration tolerance, that a clinician may recommend medication—like psychostimulants used to treat ADHD to help them control those responses and benefit more from behavioral therapy.