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Conduct Disorder

Treatments

The Dina Dinosaur Treatment Program

Treatment Summary: Children ages 5-8. Focuses on emotions, feeling empathy, learn anger management, and communication techniques among others. Therapeutic techniques utilized include fantasy play, puppet modeling, and reinforcement.

  • Reference: Webster-Stratton, C., & Reid, M.J. (2003). Treating conduct problems and strengthening social and emotional competences in young children: The Dina Dinosaur Treatment Program. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 11(3), 130-143.
  • Submitter: Noelani Butcher

Cognitive-Behavior Therapy

Treatment Summary: Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) focuses on the thought process of the child and shaping the behaviors that follow. It is a systematic approach to teaching children to process their behaviors and to make better choices.

  • Reference: Searight, H, Rottnek, F, & Abby, S. (2001). Conduct disorder: diagnosis and treatment in primary care, American Family Physician. 63(8), 1579-1588.
  • Submitter: Noelani Butcher

Cognitive-Behavior Therapy

Treatment Summary: Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) focuses on the thought process of the child and shaping the behaviors that follow. It is a systematic approach to teaching children to process their behaviors and to make better choices.

  • Reference: Searight, H, Rottnek, F, & Abby, S. (2001). Conduct disorder: diagnosis and treatment in primary care, American Family Physician. 63(8), 1579-1588.
  • Submitter: Noelani Butcher

Mode Deactivation Therapy

Treatment Summary: Mode Deactivation Therapy takes the conduct- disordered child or adolescent how they are and gives them continuous, unconditional acceptance and validation. The youth's behaviors are not seen as dysfunctional, but are instead validated by what the child has experienced in life.Once trust and rapport are built, MDT has the basic function to disturb the previously learned maladaptive responses, or modes, and attempts to adapt them into more positive, acceptable behaviors. Exercises are purposefully and mindfully practiced in order for new coping strategies to replace the previous modes of functioning. Instead of becoming violent in a perceived threatening situation, the child or adolescent develops an awareness of their fears, along with the triggers and beliefs they experience. This awareness helps them to change current and future behaviors.

  • Reference: Aspche, J. & Bass, C., (2006). A review and empirical comparison of three treatments for adolescent males with conduct and personality disorder: Mode deactivation therapy, cognitive behavior therapy and social skills training. International Journal of Behavioral and Consultation Therapy. 2(3), 382- 398.
  • Submitter: Katie Cantu

Multisystemic Therapy

Treatment Summary: Multisystemic Therapy (MST) is a home-based treatment program for adolescents who display serious anti-social behavior and emotional disturbance. The treatment focuses on multiple systems and specifically seeks to address disturbing behaviors on the parts of the juvenile offenders, their families and their peers. With this form of therapy, there is not a specific set of techniques or procedures that clinicians follow. Rather, an MST practitioner selects interventions from evidence-based treatment models that seek to address the causes of the problem behaviors and mitigate them. They work with the juveniles at their homes and schools and in their communities based on a belief that it is the entire system that contributes to an individual's antisocial behavior. A major focus of the treatment is working with the adolescent's caregivers to enable them to establish and enforce boundaries and provide a positive parenting experience.

  • Reference: Weiss, B., Han, S., Harris, V., Catron, T., Ngo, V., Caron, A., Gallop, R., & Guth, C. (2013). An independent randomized clinical trial of multisystemic therapy with non-court referred adolescents with serious conduct problems. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, (81)6, 1027-1039.
  • Submitter: Jeanne Mallory

Holistic/ Multifaceted

Treatment Summary: Children that exhibit Conduct Disorder (CD) tend to be callous, display unemotional traits, conduct problems, and difficulty with emotional processing resulting in levels of antisocial behavior. The age and degree of maladjustment reported through observation greatly depends on the resources available. The child's sex determines the manor of outbursts; girls are more socially undermining whereas boys are more aggressive. Both sexes have been observed in persistent behavior problems extending into their adulthood. Research indicates a pattern in parenting styles. Preliminary tests on parenting styles have been used to determine the levels of child conduct problems. The parents of a child with CD most often give ineffectual commands, inconsistent discipline and themselves are struggling with socioeconomic and /or family difficulties producing stress and/ or existing with depression. In order to address the spectrum of social ineptness, treatment is more effective when the family is immersed in an intervention treatment that involves the home, school and community for a cooperative support in change. Effective treatment also depends on the age and levels of conduct displayed before intervention; success rates are often poor. The cognitive, affective and behavioral areas of development are scrutinized in the courses of treatment. Parents must undergo a series of evaluations to determine the weaknesses in their parenting styles and be willing to go through a long term transformation.

  • Reference: Eames, C.; Daley, D.; Hutchings, J.; Hughes, J. C.; Jones, K.; Martin, P.; Bywater, T(2008). The Leader Observation Tool: a process skills treatment fidelity measure for the Incredible Years parenting programme. Child: Care, Health & Development, 34 (3), 391-400. Perepletchikova, F., & Kazdin, A. (2004). Assessment of Parenting Practices Related to Conduct Problems: Development and Validation of the Management of Children's Behavior Scale... Journal of Child & Family Studies, 13 (4), 385-403.Woodworth, M.; Waschbusch, D. (2008). Emotional processing in children with conduct problems and callous/unemotional traits. Child: Care, Health & Development; 34 (2), 234-244.
  • Submitter: N/A

Cognitive Behavior Treatment

Treatment Summary: Successful treatment involves the child's family. Prevention and treatment focuses on skill development for everyone involved with the child. Three interventions for treatment include child training (teaching new skills involving problem solving, development of self control and pro-social behaviors), family training (child must be considered as part of the family entity not a single component), and school and community interactions (child's environment plays an active part in treatment of conduct. Conduct disorder is somewhat resistant to the current cognitive-behavioral methods. The comorbidity of conduct disorders suggests the need for multimodal approaches in treatment. Cognitive-behavioral training that includes teaching pro-social skills with peers appears to have some promise with children.

  • Reference: Mpofu, E., Crystal, R. (2001). Conduct Disorder in Children, Challenges, and Prospective Cognitive Behavioral Treatments. Counseling Psychology Quarterly, 14 (1), 21-32, 12p.
  • Submitter: Linda Rodriguez

Pharmacological treatment of Conduct Disorder, Therapy treatment for Conduct Disorders

Treatment Summary: There are two commonly used ways to treat someone with conduct disorder. One way is the pharmacological treatment in which the person is given different is given a prescription based on the severity and/or type of behavior they are encountering. These drugs range from 5 categories being antipsychotics, mood stabilizers and antiepileptic drugs, antidepressants, stimulants, and adrenergic drugs. The non-pharmacological treatment of a conduct disorder is to have the person involved in multisystem therapy taking place in the home which includes behavioral training for both parent and youth along with interpersonal skills. There is also multidimensional treatment foster care where the child is placed into a home with trained parents that positively reinforce discipline and behavior.

  • Reference: Tcheremissine, O. V., & Lieving, L. M. (2006). Pharmacological Aspects of the Treatment of Conduct Disorder in Children and Adolescents. CNS Drugs, 20(7), 549-565. doi:10.2165/00023210-200620070-00002
  • Submitter: Christina Walker