Oppositional defiant disorder in adults: characteristics and treatment.
An overview of the symptoms, causes and treatment of oppositional defiant disorder in adults.
Oppositional defiant disorder is often closely associated with childhood. When we hear these words, the first thing that comes to mind are young children who throw tantrums, hit their siblings and parents, disrespect teachers and have poor anger management.
With the passage of time and appropriate therapy, it is normal that these children calm down a little and the symptoms of this disorder are reduced and even disappear.
But in other cases it happens that these problems of anger and defiance to authority figures are maintained and grow, showing symptoms even in adulthood. Because yes, oppositional defiant disorder in adults is real. and it is a big problem at the couple and work level, something that we are going to reflect on below.
Symptoms of oppositional defiant disorder in adults.
Oppositional defiant disorder, also called oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), is a problem that, although it is usually seen in children, it is not always seen in adults. a problem that is often seen in children and adolescents, but can also occur in adulthood..
People with ODD feel angry at the world and tend to lose their temper on a regular, even daily, basis. This can manifest itself in the form of verbal abuse and anger by having run-ins with authority figures, such as bosses, the police or even one's own parents in old age.
Adults presenting with oppositional defiant disorder engage in negative, hostile and defiant behaviors, especially notorious. The diagnosis is made when the person has manifested during the last six months four or more of the following behaviors:
- Often loses his temper
- Often argues with family and coworkers.
- Defies or actively refuses to follow rules and laws
- Deliberately annoys people
- Blames others for his or her mistakes and misbehavior
- Is easily annoyed by others
- Is often angry and resentful
- Is spiteful and vindictive
Adults with this disorder defend themselves relentlessly when someone tells them they have done something wrong or behaved incorrectly. They feel misunderstood and pushed to the limit, which is evidenced in their arguments with authority figures. This makes it very difficult for them to keep their jobs and maintain relationships and marriages.
Individuals with this disorder are people who are quick to anger, rage, are impatient and have a very low tolerance for frustration. They see themselves as mistreated, misunderstood, and unappreciated. They may see themselves as victims instead of understanding that they are the ones who are probably causing discomfort to their social circle, especially their family.
Causes of this disorder in adulthood.
Oppositional defiant disorder is believed to be strongly influenced by genetics.. It has been seen that in families where one of its members is diagnosed with this disorder, there is a greater chance that the rest of the family members will also have some behavioral problem, both this and other disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
The disorder manifests its first symptoms during childhood, the period in which it is usually diagnosed and, in fact, it is the reason why it is so common. and, in fact, is the reason why it is considered a childhood disorder. Children with oppositional defiant disorder eventually outgrow the disorder by the age of eight or nine, although about half of them will continue to experience symptoms into adulthood. About 40% of people diagnosed with this disorder get progressively worse, developing antisocial personality disorder.
Another cause that has been suggested has to do with the environment, in particular the style of parenting. In families where proper discipline has not been applied, teaching children what is right and what is wrong, they do not develop the notion of respect for authority figures.
When adulthood arrives, individuals do not know how to do not know how to manage or deal with situations where they should show a minimum of obedience, thus causing behavioral problems.and behavioral problems appear.
The following are considered as risk factors for the appearance of this disorder:
- Being male
- Lack of supervision by caregivers.
- Inconsistent discipline
- Developmental delay
- Family history of mental health problems
- Being a victim of abuse or neglect
- Growing up in a chaotic, rule-less environment
- Exposure to violence
- Highly stressful environments
- Personal or family history of substance abuse
Examples of oppositional defiant behaviors
The way in which symptoms manifest themselves in oppositional defiant disorder in adults can be very varied, but these behaviors share the fact that they are aggressive, product of rage and anger and do not respect the rules..
People with this disorder strain the environment and we can give as examples of them a wife who argues every day with her family, a hostile and aggressive roommate or an adult son not yet independent who does not accept the rules imposed by his elderly parents.
Visit the typical manifestations that can occur at home with an adult person with oppositional defiant disorder we have:
- Always needs to win an argument with a parent or spouse.
- Wants to fight authority figures and society.
- Leaves glasses all over the house knowing that it annoys his roommate
- Fined for disobedience of authority
- Involved in bar fights or public altercations
- Becomes angry at absolutely everything
It is especially noteworthy what can happen to a person with this disorder in the workplace.
- Constant arguments with boss and coworkers
- Feeling oppressed by the rules in the office
- Behaving deliberately in a way that irritates co-workers (e.g., eating stinky food)
- Reported by human resources for violating company policy
- Fired for being physically aggressive to co-workers
- Has had angry outbursts during meetings or annual reviews after receiving constructive criticism
Individuals with oppositional defiant disorder as adults Never take responsibility for their behavior and the consequences it has on the people around them. Living with a person with this disorder is very tense, so much so that it can break up families and marriages, in addition to causing layoffs in the workplace.
Although it does not have a very good prognosis in adulthood, the truth is that there are treatments for this disorder, although its effectiveness will depend on multiple issues. its effectiveness will depend on multiple issues:
- General health status and medical history of the patient
- Degree of symptom progression
- Tolerance of the patient to certain therapeutic procedures.
The main avenues of treatment for oppositional defiant disorder in adulthood include:
1. individual psychotherapy 2.
Individual psychotherapy usually employs, as in most mental disorders, the cognitive-behavioral approach in order to increase the patient's problem-solving skills, communication skills, and anger management..
2. Family therapy
Family therapy is very useful in children with this disorder, but it is also useful in adulthood. This therapeutic option aims at getting the patient's family to introduce changes so that he or she starts to better manage his or her aggressiveness and defiant behaviors..
Both partners and children can be an important source of support and re-education for this type of patient, as well as learning how to raise the next generation in a way that reduces the chances of the offspring presenting the same disorder.