Externalizing Problems of Childhood
Heather M. Helm
Externalizing problems in childhood can be broadly defined as disorders characterized by behaviors directed outward. More specifically, these behaviors typically occur in interaction with another person and are represented by disobedience, aggression, temper tantrums, fidgetiness, and overacfivity, and they often result in conflict. Beyond differing in their diagnostic criteria, externalizing problems differ from internalizing problems primarily in their expression. However, there is significant evidence that externalizing problems and internalizing problems occur comorbidly. Broadly speaking, the class of externalizing problems in childhood includes attention deficit disorder, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder, and oppositional defiant disorder. Though not comprehensive, the next section will provide an overview of some externalizing problems in childhood, guided by the diagnostic criteria of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR) . The causes of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (AD/HD) are unknown, although it is one ...