Multiple needs and multiple treatments. What's a clinician to do? Update on the psychosocial treatment of disruptive behaviours in childhood

Brendan F. Andrade, Madison Aitken, Sabrina Brodkin, Vilas Sawrikar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose of review
There are a wide range of psychosocial treatment options, delivered in different modalities, for children with disruptive behaviour. However, clinicians face many challenges in ensuring the empirically supported treatments (ESTs) they select will be effective for their patient. This has prompted studies to generate knowledge on how to improve treatment outcomes for children with disruptive behaviour. This review identifies the major challenges in treatment selection as well as emerging research seeking to improve outcomes.

Recent findings
This review emphasizes the salience of the research-practice gap associated with establishing ESTs using narrow definitions of clinical problems. Recent research is reviewed considering the complex determinants of disruptive behaviours, including parent and family factors that influence outcomes. The review subsequently outlines recent advances in research and clinical practice guidelines aiming to surmount these challenges. Key advances discussed include examining the most impactful components of ESTs, personalizing interventions by targeting core dysfunction underlying behaviour, and addressing parent factors including mental health and cultural relevance to improve outcomes.

Summary
Thorough assessment of patients’ needs, combined with knowledge of treatment response predictors, are recommended to determine the most suitable treatment plan. Recent advances have focused on developing and designing interventions that meet needs in a way that is flexible and tailored.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-416
JournalCurrent Opinion in Psychiatry
Volume35
Issue number6
Early online date20 Sep 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022

Keywords

  • disruptive behaviour
  • psychosocial treatment
  • treatment selection

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