Conduct Disorder in Page 1
Conduct Disorder in Childhood or Adolescents
July 18, 2011
Colorado Technical University Online
Professor Jennifer Madsen, Phd.
Conduct Disorder in Page 2
When in the earliest stages of diagnosing a child with a mental disorder, it is important to remember that children are children, and some behaviors are just normal childhood behaviors. Knowing normal child development patterns are detrimental when trying to discern if there is mental illness involved or if the child is developing normally. Defining and identifying abnormality is indicated by what a person does, what a person says and sometimes by what isn’t said or isn’t done. (Israel & Wicks-Nelson, 2009) There are many mental disorders that appear in infancy, childhood and adolescence and some of these disorders get worse as the child grows up. The American Psychological Association estimates that 10 percent of youth have serious mental illness and another ten percent have mild illness. (Israel & Wicks-Nelson, 2009) There are no definitive markers for identifying if a child is going to have a mental illness, but observation and comparison with other children of the same age give us clues. Behavioral disorders in children are often exacerbated by environmental, cultural and ethnic factors and treating these disorders require that health professionals look ahead into the future of the child instead of just treating the current symptoms with what some call a “quick fix,” in order to allow a child to participate in day to day activities, especially in school. (Israel & Wicks-Nelson, 2009)
This paper will discuss conduct problems, specifically conduct disorder, which has onsets in both childhood and adolescence. Conduct disorder often precedes anti-social personality disorder, and a diagnosis of APD requires that a child was diagnosed
Conduct disorder in Page 3
with or has shown conduct...