Helping Oppositional Teens with ADHD


"My 17-year-old son has been diagnosed with ADD, and is also oppositional. He skips school, and has run away from home many times."

Dr. Larry Silver specializes in treating children with attention deficit disorder (ADHD).

Your son is having some serious emotional and behavioral problems. Based on your description, I would say that, at a minimum, he has conduct disorder, along with ADHD.

You need serious help from a mental health professional as quickly as possible. If you read this and say to yourself, "I've been down that road and it has not helped," find someone else to work with. You may also need to mobilize other community resources to help you set limits (school counselors, community agencies and police, for example). His problems are serious and must be addressed immediately.

Editor's Note: Log on to, a Web site that provides help, ideas and support with situations such as yours.

Larry Silver, M.D., is clinical professor of psychiatry at Georgetown Medical Center in Washington, D.C. and director of training in child and adolescent psychiatry at Georgetown University School of Medicine. He is a former acting director and deputy director of the National Institute of Mental Health, as well as the author of Dr. Larry Silver's Advice to Parents on AD/HD and The Misunderstood Child: Understanding and Coping with Your Child's Learning Disabilities.
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