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Signs and Symptoms
Some signs and symptoms that must be perpetuated for longer than 6 months and must be considered beyond normal child behavior to fit the diagnosis are:
Actively defies or refuses to comply with adults' requests or rules
Deliberately doing things that will annoy other people 
Angry and resentful of others
Argues with adults
Blames others for own mistakes
Has few or no friends or has lost friends
Is in constant trouble in school
Spiteful or seeks revenge
Touchy or easily annoyed
Generally, these patterns of behavior will lead to problems at school and other social venues.
The earlier this disorder can be managed, the better the chances of reversing its effects on your child and your family. Treatment can help restore your child's self-esteem and rebuild a positive relationship between you and your child. Your child's relationships with other important adults in his or her life — such as teachers, clergy and care providers — also will benefit from early treatment.
What Causes Oppositional Defiant Disorder?
The exact cause of ODD is not known, but it is believed that a combination of biological, genetic, and environmental factors may contribute to the condition.
Biological: Some studies suggest that defects in or injuries to certain areas of the brain can lead to serious behavioral problems in children. In addition, ODD has been linked to abnormal amounts of special chemicals in the brain called neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters help nerve cells in the brain communicate with each other. If these chemicals are out of balance or not working properly, messages may not make it through the brain correctly, leading to symptoms of ODD, and other mental illnesses. Further, many children and teens with ODD also have other mental illnesses, such as ADHD, learning disorders, depression, or an anxiety disorder, which may contribute to their behavior problems.
Genetics: Many children and teens with ODD have close family members with mental illnesses, including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and personality disorders. This suggests that a vulnerability to develop ODD may be inherited.
Environmental: Factors such as a dysfunctional family life, a family history of mental illnesses and/or substance abuse, and inconsistent discipline by parents may contribute to the development of behavior disorders.
What I found troubled me greatly. As I write in the book, "the charts documented in minute detail the tragedy of what it meant to be warehoused in a state asylum at mid-century—and, in particular, in an asylum where short court sentences devolved into lifelong incarceration. A number of charts contained yearly notes from patients to their doctors voicing such sentiments as Doc, I really think I am cured or Dear Doctor, I believe I am ready to go home, or, You have no right to keep me here. These letters stacked thirty-deep in some charts, signifying years of pleading and longing and anger, together with thirty years of responses from clinicians urging, You are almost there, or: Perhaps next year. Invariably, the last note in each stack was a death certificate from the Ionia coroner."
When did you first suspect that diagnostic patterns with schizophrenia had become heavily racialized?
I found dramatic racial and gender shifts in persons diagnosed with schizophrenia at Ionia during the 1960s—so much so that schizophrenia's racial and gendered transformation became the central narrative of my book. This shift became apparent very early in my research. Before the 60s, Ionia doctors viewed schizophrenia as an illness that afflicted nonviolent, white, petty criminals, including the hospital's considerable population of women from rural Michigan. Charts emphasized the negative impact of "schizophrenogenic styles" on these women's abilities to perform their duties as mothers and wives.
To say the least, these patients were not seen as threatening. This patient wasn't able to take care of her family as she should, read one chart; another, This patient is not well adjusted and can't do her housework; and another, She got confused and talked too loudly and embarrassed her husband.
By the mid- to late-1960s, however, schizophrenia was a diagnosis disproportionately applied to the hospital's growing population of African American men from urban Detroit. Perhaps the most shocking evidence I uncovered was that hospital charts "diagnosed" these men in part because of their symptoms, but also because of their connections to the civil rights movement. Many of the men were sent to Ionia after convictions for crimes that ranged from armed robbery to participation in civil-rights protests, to property destruction during periods of civil unrest, such as the Detroit riots of 1968. Charts stressed how hallucinations and delusions rendered these men as threats not only to other patients, but also to clinicians, ward attendants, and to society itself. You'd see comments like Paranoid against his doctors and the police. Or, Would be a danger to society were he not in an institution.
Did the second edition of the DSM, released in 1968, have a significant influence on that shift in emphasis?
One of the key pieces of evidence I use to help explain the shifts seen at Ionia is through an extensive analysis of the changing language associated with the official psychiatric definition of schizophrenia. Before the 60s, psychiatry often posited that schizophrenia was a psychological "reaction" to a splitting of the basic functions of personality. Official descriptors emphasized the generally calm nature of such persons, in ways that encouraged associations with middle-class housewives.
But the frame changed in the 60s. In 1968, in the midst of a political climate marked by profound protest and social unrest, psychiatry published the second edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. That text recast the paranoid subtype of schizophrenia as a disorder of masculinized belligerence. "The patient's attitude is frequently hostile and aggressive," DSM-II claimed, "and his behavior tends to be consistent with his delusions." I have a lot of data in my book that shows how this language—particularly terms such as "hostility" and "aggression"—was used to justify schizophrenia diagnoses in black men at Ionia in the 1960s and 1970s.
How would you explain that shift, and would you view American psychiatry in those years as exhibiting either manifest or unconscious racism? Was it just coincidence that the DSM-II language enabled the diagnosis of schizophrenia among increasing numbers of African Americans?
That's a very important question. I argue extensively in my book that the purpose of my analysis is not to lay blame for individual racism, because I feel that such blame-games oversimplify what was going on. Many of the doctors at Ionia genuinely wanted to help their patients. I also talk to psychiatrists who worked on the DSM-II who told me that they were trying to do the best they could to produce scientific, objective diagnostic criteria.
At the same time, my evidence shows how even the most scientific diagnostic criteria can reflect the social environments in which they are produced, a process I discuss through the language of structural or institutional violence.
This was certainly the case for the DSM-II. As I show, the manual's emphasis on hostility and aggression reflected a much-wider set of national conversations and anxieties about civil rights. The shifting frame surrounding schizophrenia had dire consequences for African American men held at the Ionia State Hospital during the civil-rights era. More broadly, my evidence also shows that growing numbers of research articles in professional journals used this language to cast schizophrenia as a disorder of racialized aggression.
In the worst cases, psychiatric authors conflated the schizophrenic symptoms of African American patients with the perceived schizophrenia of civil rights protests, particularly those organized by Black Power, the Black Panthers, the Nation of Islam, or other activist groups. Ultimately, new psychiatric definitions of schizophrenic illness in the 60s impacted persons of many different racial and ethnic backgrounds. Some patients became schizophrenic because of changes in diagnostic criteria rather than in their clinical symptoms. Others saw their diagnoses changed to depression, anxiety, or other conditions because they did not manifest hostility or aggression.
Thomas Stephen Szasz (play /ˈsɑːs/ sahss; born April 15, 1920) is a psychiatrist and academic. Since 1990 he has been Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the State University of New York Health Science Center in Syracuse, New York. He is a well-known social critic of the moral and scientific foundations of psychiatry, and of the social control aims of medicine in modern society, as well as of scientism. His books The Myth of Mental Illness (1960) and The Manufacture of Madness: A Comparative Study of the Inquisition and the Mental Health Movement (1970) set out some of the arguments with which he is most associated.
Lying, which requires the brain to manipulate information, is associated with brain regions that permit higher-order thinking. It's also very common: some 20 percent of 2-year-olds lie, nearly 50 percent of 3-year-olds lie and close to 90 percent of kids lie at age 4. The most deceitful age of all, says The Telegraph, is 12, when almost every kid tells fibs and by the age of 16, lying starts to decrease. Just 70 percent of 16-year-olds lie.