Oppositional Defiant Disorder and DSM-5

Filling the pail

We are fortunate to live in an age where medical diagnosis has advanced. Many conditions have similar symptoms but different underlying causes. A disease caused by a virus will not respond to treatment with antibiotics and so, if it is serious enough, we can run tests to find out the exact pathogen involved. Often the best we were able to do prior to the advent of modern medicine was alleviate the symptoms.

An understanding of underlying causes also helps prevention. Once you know that diseases may be caused by microorganisms, you can put in place aseptic practices that help prevent their spread.

DSM-5

Imagine if we didn’t have these understandings. Imagine if diseases were categorised as things like, ‘stomach ache condition’ or ‘sneezing syndrome’. Imagine a world where a visit to the doctor would elicit only circular logic:

  • You have ‘stomach ache condition’ or ‘SAC’
  • We know this because you…

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