Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD)

By: Nancy Thomas

Modern psychology is constantly expanding to diagnose and raise awareness of treatable disorders. To the benefit of a number of children and parents, Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) has gained recognition in recent years. RAD refers to a condition in which a child has significant challenges accepting and receiving love or other kinds of affection. RAD is often a consequence of trauma during a child’s early life. A complex disorder, RAD is characterized mainly by an inability to love and trust; fortunately, research makes it possible for the disorder to be identified and treated early. Children with RAD often share a number of symptoms, among them an unhealthy obsession with gore, fire, or blood; an aversion to physical proximity with another human being; inappropriate sexual behavior; bossiness; a proclivity toward lying; or an inability to maintain eye contact. Children with RAD are also often destructive toward themselves or others and may bear little to no understanding of the consequences of their actions. Without treatment, RAD can affect a family in many ways. Parents who identify these characteristics in their children are encouraged to seek help and guidance from a professional. Although treatment for the disorder is relatively new, the network of therapists and neuropsychologists specializing in RAD grows every day, and solutions to the life-impacting disorder are constantly evolving. RAD may be addressed in a variety of ways, including holding therapy, neurofeedback, or equine therapy, a treatment involving horses. Visit attachment.org today to learn more and find a licensed therapist in your area.

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