Conduct Disorder And Aggression Case Study Sample

Type of paper: Case Study

Topic: Behavior, Disorders, Psychology, Family, Childhood, Ethics, Children, Adolescence

Pages: 2

Words: 550

Published: 2020/12/18

The difference between conduct disorder and stressful and stormy adolescence is that conduct disorder begins during childhood periods while adolescence issues starts and ends during teenage years. In many adolescents, a certain level of and even severe antisocial behavior is common. These kinds of behaviors often begin and end in the teenage years. On the other hand, many teenagers with conduct disorder begin their bad behaviors in childhood, which can result in long-term effects in adolescence and adulthood (Mash & Wolfe, 2013). For instance, difficult temperament and social information processing difficulties can damage attachment with parents, poverty conditions may limit intellectual stimulation, dysfunction in the family can escalate a child’s attention seeking and aggressive behaviors, stressful life events and peer rejection may provoke depressive symptoms, and poor educational opportunities can blunt problem solving capabilities. Although these childhood patterns cannot always result in conduct disorder, if they do, the disorder may be severe and persistent (Kearney, 2013). A teenage running away from home due to marital issues is different from conduct disorder because running away is not an antisocial behavior in that context.
Based on the DSM-IV-TR, the main characteristic of conduct disorder is a repetitive and persistent pattern of behavior where the fundamental rights or primary age-suitable societal rules are violated. For any youth to meet criteria for the disorder, he/she must indicate three specific symptoms for at least 12 months as well as at least one symptom in the past six months. The symptoms are: intimidating others, using a weapon, stealing, starting fights, being physically cruel to people or animals, setting fires, committing sexual assaults, lying, destroying property, breaking into another’s property, staying out at night, refusing to attend school, and running away from home (Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders: DSM-5, 2013). Starting fights and being cruel may be grouped together because they involve interactions with other people. Using drugs, setting fires, and stealing may also be combined because they all involve tangible things. Moreover, it is significant to understand what maintains conduct behavior because a child may be engaged in theft or lying in order to obtain food, clothes or other items.
Studies indicate that girls usually become delinquent later than boys. The reason could be that girls are generally less expected to indicate disruptive behavior issues than boys. In addition, childhood aggression can predict adolescent conduct disorder in boys but not always in girls. Rather, girls in this stage usually may indicate more non-aggressive behavior issues and experience better long-term outcome than boys’ experience. Symptoms of conduct disorder in girls are more likely to result in to anxiety and depression than to antisocial conducts in adulthood (Mash & Wolfe, 2013).
The issue of juvenile crime is serious because it concerns imprisonment of children. I think locking up children in a confined place denies them their childhood rights, interferes with their education, and makes them fell like criminals. The best way to deal with a 14-year old who has committed a rape and murder would be to sentence him to community service and assign him therapy sessions with a behavioral psychologist. Benefits of locking up teenagers in a juvenile facility include the society is able to get rid of antisocial teenagers, teenagers get the desired punishment for their behaviors, and teenagers learn to be accountable for their actions. Disadvantages include their mental health is negatively affected as they end up getting depressed, their education is disrupted, and they lack an opportunity to develop their talents.
I would add behavioral change to Derek’s treatment. His behavior needed to transform completely for him to act like other children (Kearney, 2013). His behavior towards his parents needed to improve, he needs to respect and be obedient to his parents. By doing this he will learn to listen to them and relate to others the same way he relates to his parents. If parents become uninvolved in the treatment, the best thing to do would be to obtain a court order to force them to get involved because without their involvement, the child will not bother to attend such therapies.
Treatment of conduct disorder in adolescents is often difficult and unsuccessful because during that stage, some level of antisocial behavior is typical to many of them. In addition, severe antisocial behaviors sometimes begin and end during adolescence stage. Moreover, adolescence usually engage in substance use to fill a biological need in their bodies due to the changes that take place in their bodies during that stage. For instance, lower than normal levels of autonomic arousal in adolescents may force them to engage in risk-taking and thrill seeking behaviors such as drug use in order to increase their biological arousal (Kearney, 2013).
Since oppositional defiant disorder usually occurs along with other behavioral or mental health problems, it becomes difficult to distinguish symptoms of oppositional defiant disorder from those connected to other problems. Thus, it is critical to diagnose and treat any problems that co-occur because they can lead to the development of oppositional defiant disorder or make it worse. In addition, it is difficult to treat ODD alone without evaluating and treating other conditions such as depression, learning and communication problems, and anxiety. Boys are more likely to receive ODD diagnosis than girls are because girls usually indicate the symptoms of ODD differently than boys. For instance, girls with ODD indicate their aggressiveness verbally instead of actions other indirect ways such as lying, being uncooperative. On the other hand, boys are more likely to lose temper and argue with adults. This makes them more prone to be diagnosed with ODD.
The most disturbing oppositional behaviors include frequent temper tantrums, frequent anger and resentment outbursts, and excessive arguments with adults, deliberate annoyance, and active refusal to comply with requests and rules.


Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders: DSM-5. (5thed.). (2013). Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association.
Mash, E., & Wolfe, D. (2013). Abnormal child psychology (5th ed.).Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.
Kearney, C. (2013). Casebook in child behavior disorders (5th ed.).Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

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"Conduct Disorder And Aggression Case Study Sample," Free Essay Examples -, 18-Dec-2020. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 30-Nov-2023].
Conduct Disorder And Aggression Case Study Sample. Free Essay Examples - Published Dec 18, 2020. Accessed November 30, 2023.

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