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Behavioral disorder: definition, list, symptoms

Behavioral disorder: definition, list, symptoms

A behavioral disorder reflects a psychic disorder. It can affect different spheres: food, mood, sex…. What are they ? What are its manifestations? And the treatments? The explanations of Dr. Patrick Lemoine, psychiatrist.

What is the definition of behavioral disorder?

Behavioral disorders are anomalies in the way of acting and reacting. They include agitation, aggressiveness, inhibition, obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD), phobias, eating disorders (anorexia, bulimia, etc.), hyperactivity, addictions to alcohol, tobacco, drugs, gambling, work, sex, the Internet…

List of behavioral disorders

The International Classification of Diseases 11th revision (ICD 11) is a list coding in particular diseases, signs, symptoms, social circumstances and external causes of disease or injury, published by the WHO. It contains more than 14,000 different codes. “The main interest of this type of classification is statistical and makes it possible to carry out research that is understandable by all the cultures of the world since it makes it possible to ensure that the experts are all talking about the same thing. “, explains Dr. Lemoine. Mental and behavioral disorders are classified in Chapter 6 of ICD 11 with mental and neurodevelopmental disorders. These disorders “reflect dysfunction in psychological, biological, or developmental processes underlying mental and behavioral functioning. These disorders are generally associated with distress or impairment in the personal, family, social, school, professional domains or other important areas of operation” defines WHO.

Eating Disorders

Eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, are characterized by abnormal eating behavior and excessive preoccupation with food, accompanied by strong concerns about weight and body shape. Eating and eating disorders are also classified in WHO ICD 11. They are characterized by abnormal eating behaviors that are not explained by another medical condition and which are not developmentally appropriate or culturally sanctioned. Eating disorders correspond to behavioral disorders that are not not related to weight and shape concerns, such as the ingestion of inedible substances or the voluntary regurgitation of food. Eating disorders are abnormal eating behavior and preoccupation with food, as well as marked preoccupation with weight and figure. We mainly distinguish:

► Anorexia : it leads to strict and voluntary food deprivation for several months or even a year. This disorder, which is accompanied by amenorrhea and weight loss, most often occurs between the ages of 14 and 17 and can lead to death.

► Bulimia : this disorder is characterized by attacks of overeating during which the person swallows enormous quantities of food without being able to stop. It can be accompanied by vomiting (restrictive bulimia) or not.

Some psychological problems only appear when night falls. These include night terrors, which occur more often in children, during stage 3 sleep.

  • Fetishism. This corresponds to sexual excitement caused by the sight of a part of the other’s body (feet, breasts, legs…), an object (boots, tights…) or a material (leather…).
  • sadomasochism. Sexual practice using pain, domination or humiliation in the pursuit of pleasure.

Behavioral problems can be a sign of a disease, for example a brain tumor or Alzheimer’s disease. Some medications may be helpful. In all cases, psychological follow-up is necessary.

“These disorders affect all ages and can appear at any time of life, from childhood to old age”says Dr. Lemoine.

A psychologist who, if necessary, will refer you to a psychiatrist if you need a medical prescription and/or a specialized therapist.

It is realized by a child psychiatrist for children, a psychiatrist for adults. It is based on the symptoms described, the medical and family history, the environmental factors as well as the suffering of the subject and/or those around him.

Taking psychotropic drugs can help reduce stress. “But the treatments are rarely chemical, most often: CBT, hypnosis, meditation or even a radical change in lifestyle, environment… “explains Dr. Lemoine.

Thanks to Dr. Patrick Lemoine, psychiatrist.

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