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What are behavioral disorders and how can they be managed?

03 Oct 2019 at 15:53hrs | Views
We often hear people talk of behavioral disorders but most of those around us have no idea what they are. This article seeks to demystify and equip parents and guardians with the basic knowledge on how to identify them and seek help in time. Behavioral disorders are also known as disruptive behavioral disorders. They occur in both children and adults and if untreated they become the major reasons why people fail to keep relationships and jobs.

What causes these disorders? Most of these disorders can be traced back to the biological factors, inter alia; malnutrition, genetic reasons, brain damage, illness or disability. Also in the same vein; unhealthy disciplinary style, coercion, divorce or emotional upset, and negative economic state.  

What Are the Signs of a Behavioral Disorder?-a person with a behavioral disorder may act out or display emotional upset in various ways and this differs from individual to individual.

What are the emotional symptoms of behavioral disorders?- They exhibit emotional symptoms like; blame game, tantrums, easily annoyed, nervous, disobeying rules, cannot handle frustration and mostly appearing angry.  

What are the physical symptoms of behavioral disorders?- these symptoms must be read with other symptoms above and vice versa to be able to conclusively suspect that one has a behavioral disorder. They often develop fever, headache, and rash, sometimes they abuse substances and you can easily see burnt finger tips, bloodshot eyes, shaking uncontrollably.

There are several disorder types and the major types are;

1.    Anxiety
2.    Pervasive developmental disorders
3.    Disruptive behavioral disorders
4.    Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
5.    Emotional disorders
6.    Anxiety disorders
7.    Post-traumatic stress disorder
8.    Obsessive-compulsive disorder
9.    Generalized anxiety disorder
10.    Panic disorder
11.    Dissociative disorders
12.    Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

Let me explain a few of these disorders:
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) - this condition impairs one's ability to properly focus and avoid or control impulsive behaviors. This condition according to research affects males more than females. Does someone around you exhibit this kind of behavior?

Emotional behavioral disorder- this type of the disorder affects a person's ability to be themselves and be happy, and they fail to control or manage their emotions. Research lists profound symptoms that you can be on lookout for; the person will show a lot of fear and/or anxiety over something, weird and inappropriate responses or emotions, a prolonged feeling of unhappiness and/or depression, they struggle with interpersonal relationships.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) - this type of disorder makes people direct their negative and pervasive actions towards authority. The people are generally irritable, hostile, and uncooperative. They deliberately try to annoy you and are spiteful.  

Anxiety- anxiety is not uncommon in society but prolonged anxiety must get you worried. This prolonged anxiety affects performance at work or even at school.
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) - this kind of disorder is evidenced by excessive fear, unreasonable thoughts that ultimately lead to obsession. These obsessions lead to compulsions and stalking.  

Behavioral disorders if unchecked can cause several problems for both the patient and the people around them. If you suspect that a friend or family member has a behavioral disorder; you may need to urgently seek medial or psychological help. If untreated, the condition may affect their professional life, lose their job, break up a marriage or relationship, lead to suicides, students may drop out of school and even abuse drugs and other undesired elements. The earlier a behavioral disorder is diagnosed and properly treated, the more likely it is that a child or adult suffering from it will be able to control their behavior. Cognitive behavioral therapy and/or with medication is an effective way to treat disorders. You need to consult a licensed psychologist or hospital for effective treatment. Disorders can be managed and treated after all, seek treatment today.

Temba Munsaka is a student psychologist that has a keen interest in neuropsychology. He can be contacted at

Source - Temba Munsaka
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