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Deviant behavior of teenagers

Deviant behavior of teenagers – set of the actions and acts deviating the rules accepted by society. It is shown by aggression, a sadism, theft, falsity, vagrancy, uneasiness, a depression, purposeful isolation, attempts of a suicide, hyper sociability, a viktimnost, phobias, violations of food behavior, dependences, navyazchivost. Types of deviations are considered as separate mental disorders and as symptoms of a certain syndrome, a disease. Diagnostics is carried out by clinical and psychological methods. Treatment includes application of medicines, psychocorrection, psychotherapy, social and rehabilitation actions.

Deviant behavior of teenagers

"Deviation" means "deviation". The deviant behavior is called deviant behavior, social deviation. Prevalence among teenagers makes 40-64%. High figures of statistical data are explained by features peculiar to this age period: social, physiological and psychological immaturity. Are most of all subject to behavioural deviations of the young man and girl of 14-18 years, brought up in adverse social conditions, having a hereditary otyagoshchennost on mental disorders, toxicomania, drug addiction, alcoholism.

Reasons of deviant behavior of teenagers

The reasons of deviations at teenagers can be united in two big groups. The first – features of the social environment:

  • Incomplete families. In the conditions of education by one parent the risk of formation of the pathological relations with the child based on the requirement of unconditional submission, insufficient participation, misunderstanding is high. There is no model of interactions with an opposite sex.
  • Conflict, asocial families. Tension between parents, frequent quarrels, lack of mutual understanding negatively affect educational process. Prevalence of antisocial tendencies, a parasitic way of life, alcoholism become a model of actions.
  • Teaching and educational mistakes. The insufficient attention of teachers, inability to come into contact with the teenager becomes a basis for formation of poor progress, the conflicts with a class, teachers.

The second group of the reasons leading to formation of deviant behavior of teenagers are medicobiological factors. Form a physiological basis of deviations:

  • The burdened heredity. Development of deviations is promoted by the lowered protective mechanisms, limited adaptive functions of the personality. These features are observed at inheritance of intellectual insufficiency, abnormal traits of character, tendency to alcoholism, drug addiction.
  • Pathologies of the central nervous system. Biological inferiority of nervous cells of a brain develops at a serious illness on the first years of life, craniocereberal injuries. It is shown by emotional instability, decrease in adaptive opportunities.
  • Features of the pubertatny period. Hormonal reorganization of an organism, active maturing of departments of a cerebral cortex, formation of the highest mental functions can be shown by a point of characterologic lines, asocial acts.


The pathogenesis of deviant behavior of teenagers is difficult. Development of deviations is based on a condition of a disorientation in system of social values and norms. The period of age crisis is characterized by sharp requirement of self-determination, self-expression. Lack of a favorable social situation, stable system of values, support of significant faces (peers, adults) leads to formation of pathological behavioural patterns. Often desire to draw attention, to prove the importance, independence, independence, force is their cornerstone. Acts often have illegal, anti-moral character.


There are several options of classifications of deviant behavior of teenagers. Within medical approach the typology offered by V. D. Mendelevich – the Russian psychiatrist, the psychotherapist, patopsikhology is widespread. It is based on ways of interaction with reality, the nature of violation of public norms:

  • Delinkventny type. Includes the actions, acts which are treated as criminal: theft, robbery, violence.
  • Addiktivny type. The aspiration to leave from reality, to maintain intensive emotions is formed. In the artificial way teenagers try to obtain change of a mental state: use chemicals (alcoholism, drug addiction, toxicomania), fix attention on certain incentives, actions (a trance, masturbation).
  • Patokharakterologichesky type. The behavior is caused by the pathological traits of character created in the course of education. This group includes accentuation of character, a psychopathia (isteroidny, schizoid, epileptoidny, etc.).
  • Psychopathological type. Behavioural reactions of the teenager – manifestation of psychopathological syndromes and symptoms of a mental disease. Example: apathy – a depression symptom, a hypomania – display of bipolar disorder.
  • Hyper abilities. Endowments, talent, genius are shown by the actions deviating normal.

Symptoms of deviant behavior of teenagers

Teenage deviations have no accurately expressed staging. Development goes from the single deviating acts to the regular repeating actions, organized activity, a way of life. Progress can take several weeks, months, years.

The main clinical manifestation of deviant behavior of teenagers – complexity of social adaptation: frequent conflicts with teachers, schoolmates, change of friends, commitment to "the bad companies". Public disadaptation is shown by goings from the house, refusal of school, truancies of lessons, enthusiasm for the Internet, computer games. Educational activity is given hard, interest occupations is absent, progress low. Absent-mindedness, low concentration of attention, lack of strong-willed abilities is characteristic. Hobbies often change, affairs remain not finished.

In the emotional and personal sphere infantilism – low level of responsibility, control of the behavior is accurately expressed, to the organization of the economic and household sphere of life. It is shown by untidiness, delay, inability to make the plan of work, to work according to it. Emotional instability, frequent change of mood prevails. Depending on type of deviation there are phobias, depressions, flashes of aggression, a hysterics, obstinacy, impulsive destructive acts. The self-assessment is often inadequate, it is compensated by restrictive behavior (isolation), cruelty, affected indifference.

At the physiological level deviant behavior is followed by sleep disorders, appetite, day drowsiness, decrease in functions of immune system, dismenorey, psychosomatic reactions. Teenagers have insufficient or excess body weight, are subject to infectious diseases, functional frustration (headaches, temperature increase, differences of arterial pressure, digestion violation).

It should be noted that unusual abilities are also deviation signs, but seldom are considered as pathological symptoms. Gifted ingenious teenagers do not cause concern from society, do not need medical assistance. Special conditions of development will be organized by teaching and educational institutions.


In the absence of the medical, psychotherapeutic and pedagogical assistance deviant reactions of teenagers become a way of life. The most adverse options are organized crime, alcoholism, prostitution. Teenagers and youth from these groups are most subject to violent death, incidence of socially important infections (tuberculosis, HIV, STD), a lethal outcome. A complication of deviations are suicides. Spontaneous death is result of emotional instability, impulsiveness, lack of the professional help.


Diagnostics of deviant behavior of teenagers is carried out by the psychiatrist and the medical psychologist. Process of diagnosis is based on a number of clinical and psychological methods:

  • Observation, conversation. The psychiatrist interviews the patient: finds out conditions of accommodation, feature of family relationship, habits, a hobby. Estimates the general condition, features of the emotional sphere, behavioural answers.
  • Poll of parents, relatives. The psychiatrist listens to complaints of the people who are close contacting to the patient. The opinion of other people is important as the criticism to own state at deviant teenagers is often lowered.
  • Psychological testing. The clinical psychologist suggests the teenager to answer questions of tests, personal questionnaires. The Minesotsky multiple-factor questionnaire of the personality (MMPI), the patokharakterologichesky diagnostic questionnaire (PDQ), Ayzenk's questionnaire, an uneasiness scale is often used. The result allows to define the dominating features of the personality, characterologic lines.
  • Projective techniques. Are used by the clinical psychologist for detection of the forced-out emotions – aggressions, fear, alarm. Are presented by pictural tests, Sondhi's test, Rosenzweig's test.

Data of special diagnostic methods are supplemented with documentation of other experts interacting with the teenager. At diagnosis the psychiatrist considers characteristics of school teachers, the district police officer, extracts from the out-patient card of the pediatrician, the children's neurologist and doctors of other specialties.

Treatment of deviant behavior of teenagers

Treatment of social deviations demands the integrated approach including the pharmacological, psychocorrectional, psychotherapeutic help. The teenage psychiatrist makes the plan of treatment including:

  • Psychotherapy. Sessions are directed to awareness of character by the teenager of features, training in behavioural methods of self-control. The analysis of conflict situations, possible options of actions, reactions is made. Psychotherapeutic meetings are recommended to parents for restoration of the full-fledged relations.
  • Psychocorrection. The purpose of occupations – to stabilize an emotional state, to develop functions of attention, thinking. The result increases efficiency of psychotherapeutic work, confidence in own forces, awakens interest in study (a prerequisite for social rehabilitation).
  • Pharmacotherapy. Application of medicamentous means is an additional method of treatment, is shown to patients with biological predisposition to deviations: having psychotic frustration, neurologic pathologies. There are no specific medicines for treatment of asocial behavior. Use of lithium, antipsychotic medicines, antikonvulsant reduces expressiveness of aggression. The isolated application of pharmacotherapy is inefficient.

In parallel with medical, psychological assistance social and pedagogical rehabilitation is carried out. Actions will be organized on the basis of educational institutions by social teachers, teachers-subject teachers, school psychologists. A perspective way of treatment of the deviating forms of behavior is the group psychotherapy. Meetings assume modeling of frequent problem situations. During role-playing games teenagers study methods of resolution of conflicts, watch own reactions and their results, learn to build up the productive relationship with peers.

Forecast and prevention

In most cases at complex treatment the deviant behavior of teenagers has the favorable forecast – young people have flexibility of adaptive mechanisms, rehabilitation and psychotherapeutic actions yield positive result. Great efforts are demanded by cases when deviation develops against the background of a neurologic and/or psychotic disease. Prevention is based on early identification of the pathological intra family relations, problems with training.

Deviant behavior of teenagers - treatment should be carried out only under the supervision of a doctor. Self-treatment is unacceptable!!!

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