Adolescence problems; adolescence is the time when independence starts. Usually, adolescents exercise their independence by questioning their parents' rules, which sometimes leads to disrespecting them. Parents and caregivers must distinguish occasional errors in judgment from some degree of incorrect behavior that requires professional intervention. The severity and frequency of violations are guides. For example, orgies of alcohol, absenteeism, or recurring thefts are much more serious than isolated episodes of these same activities. Warning signs suggesting disruptive behaviors that impair functioning include decreased academic performance and runaways. Adolescents who cause serious injury or use a weapon in a fight present a particularly serious problem.

1. Adolescence problems; behavioral problems

Since adolescents are much more independent and mobile than children, they are often beyond the direct physical control of adults. In these circumstances, the adolescents determine their behavior by their own moral and behavioral code. Rather than directly controlling the actions of their children, parents guide them. Adolescents who have a warm relationship with their supportive parents are less likely to engage in risky behaviors, as are those whose parents transmit clear expectations to them about the behaviors expected of their children and set consistent boundaries.

Authoritarian parents usually use a system of graduated privileges, in which they give the adolescent small responsibilities and certain freedoms (such as taking care of an animal, doing household chores, buying his own clothes, decorating his room, or managing his pocket money). Suppose the teenager performs his duties well for a period of time. In that case, the parents grant him more responsibilities and privileges (such as going out with friends without parents and driving a vehicle). Conversely, a lack of judgment and responsibility results in the loss of certain privileges. Each step of gaining autonomy requires the utmost attention from parents, who make sure that the teenager follows the defined rules.

Some parents and their teens come into conflict on almost every subject. In these situations, the main problem is control: Teens want to be in control of their lives, and their parents want them to know that they are always the ones who make the rules. In this case, it can be to everyone's benefit if parents focus on choosing their fights and focus their efforts on their actions (for example, attending school and participating in household chores) rather than on their actions. The way he expresses himself (dress, hairstyle, favorite entertainment).

Adolescents whose driving remains dangerous or simply unacceptable may benefit from professional intervention despite their parents' obvious efforts. Substance use is often a trigger for behavioral problems, and substance use disorders require appropriate treatment. Behavioral problems can also be symptoms of learning disabilities, depression, or other mental disorders. These disorders generally require support, and mental disorders often also require drug treatment. If parents cannot prevent risky behavior in a teenager, they can seek legal intervention and the help of a judicial supervisor who can force the teen to follow certain rules.

2. Adolescence problems; behavior disorder meaning

The notion of disorder in psychiatric medicine refers to the idea of a deviation from a standard of health of the population, a deviation which is no longer a delay but a constituted anomaly responsible for a handicap and negative consequences in the social, school, family functioning of the child/adolescent. Often the disease occurs at the extreme of a normal-pathological continuum, so it can be difficult to distinguish the boundaries and make a diagnosis. ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder, while ODD and CD are considered disorders of self-control and the regulation of one's impulses and behavior in a society organized around rules and laws that govern respect for others.

Related: Child language development stages; from birth to six years old

3. Adolescence problems; behavior disorder symptoms

The symptoms depend on the type of behavior disorder the young person suffers from:

Oppositional defiant disorder

Conduct disorder.

3.1 Oppositional Defiant Disorder

This disorder creates trouble for the young person or the people they interact with, whether at school, at home, and in the community. It has the following categories of symptoms:

  • Anger or irritability.
  • Tendency to argue or challenge.
  • Malevolence.

To be diagnosed with the oppositional defiant disorder, young people must show four symptoms in these three categories in their interactions with someone who is not their brother or sister.

Anger or irritability:

For example, a person with Oppositional Defiant Disorder may:

  • Often lose his temper.
  • Is often touchy or milky.
  • Often be angry or hold a grudge.

Tendency to argue or challenge:

Someone with Oppositional Defiant Disorder:

  • Often argues with people who represent authority: teachers, parents, other adults.
  • Refuses to abide by rule or authority.
  • Often on purpose to annoy others.
  • Often blames others for mistakes or misconduct.


The youngster is said to have been malicious at least twice in the past six months. For example, if he felt betrayed or hurt, he would have rejoiced in others' misfortune (which he would have caused) rather than trying to make things better.

3.2 Conduct disorder

Conduct disorder is a complex of behavioral and emotional problems other than the typical problems of a young person's age. Usually, a child with this disorder respects the rights of others little, if not at all. In addition, many of these young people do not understand the impact of their actions on others or feel no remorse if the impact is negative.

It has the following four categories of symptoms:

Attack on humans and animals: The young person can, for example:

  • intimidate or threaten others.
  • Look for a fight with others.
  • Torture humans or animals.
  • Rob his victim by threatening him.
  • Seriously injuring people with a weapon.
  • Force someone to have sex with him.


The young person can, for example, deliberately destroy someone's property or set a building on fire.

Lies or theft:

He breaks into a building, house, or car.

He lies to achieve his ends or to avoid unpleasant tasks.

He steals from the store.

Intentional rule violation:

The young person does not respect the rules of others. For example, it is not uncommon for him to:

  • Go home late even though his parents have told him to go home early.
  • Runs away.
  • Skipping school.

4. Adolescence problems; behavioral disorder treatment

What can a doctor do with a child with a behavioral disorder?

Your child's doctor can help you find out if their behavior is normal for their age, if their impulses are due to stress, or if they have a behavioral disorder. If you ask, the doctor will suggest a treatment for you.

Sometimes your doctor will refer your child to a mental health specialist for further evaluation. This assessment can help you get a better diagnosis and get your child on the right treatment.

Originally published on Live Positively.