SUWS of the Carolinas, is a life-changing wilderness-based treatment center for children, adolescents, and teens struggling with ODD.
At our outdoor treatment center for troubled teens, we blend traditional clinical treatment modalities with wilderness therapy to empower adolescents and teens to overcome their mood disorders and find lasting recovery.
Learn More About ODD
SUWS of the Carolinas is a therapeutic wilderness program that focuses on short-term, high-impact clinical intervention and therapy for teens and adolescents, ages 10 to 17, who are struggling with oppositional defiant disorder . At SUWS of the Carolinas, we provide four different treatment tracks (Approach, Phoenix Outdoor, Seasons, and SUWS) which are designed to meet the distinct needs of all of our students, including those who are battling symptoms of ODD.
This unique wilderness treatment center removes modern distractions, simplifies choices, and teaches valuable lessons. As a result, our students begin to accept responsibility for personal decisions, address individual and family issues, and become invested in their own personal growth.
Characterized by a frequent and persistent pattern of angry or irritable mood, argumentative or defiant behavior, or vindictiveness, ODD is a mental health disorder that often results in problematic interactions with others. When ODD is present, an adolescent or teen with this disorder will typically have frequent conflicts with parents, teachers, and peers. As a result of such conflicts, a child with ODD will experience significant impairment in emotional, social, and academic functioning. At our leading wilderness treatment center, our expert staff has had years of experience treating children and adolescents who have been diagnosed with numerous of mental health concerns, including oppositional defiant disorder. Our highly respected and accredited treatment center will provide your child with a life-changing therapeutic experience.
Helping a Loved One or Family Member with the Treatment Process
Parenting a child with oppositional defiant disorder can be extremely difficult. The constant defiance, argumentativeness, and spitefulness can quickly break a person down and usually causes conflict within the family. If you have a child or adolescent who is displaying symptoms of ODD, you may be at a loss for what you can do to help him or her. In some instances, you may feel hopeless that things will never improve. The good news is that there are some ways in which you can be of great help to your child. Consider the following:
- Try to always focus on the positive. Make sure to give your child plenty of praise and positive reinforcement for good behavior.
- Pick your battles. Since children with ODD have a difficult time not being argumentative, prioritize what it is you would like your child to do.
- Set up reasonable limits with clearly understood consequences that are consistently enforced.
- Continue to be an active participant in your child’s treatment process.
- Remain patient and continue to offer your child unconditional support.
Why Consider Treatment at SUWS of the Carolinas
If oppositional defiant disorder is allowed to persist throughout a child or adolescent’s development, it becomes increasingly likely that he or she will experience a number of negative consequences. The symptoms that are characteristic of this disorder can trigger the onset of significant problems within a youth’s academic achievement, social life, and home life. For example, a young person with ODD may be regularly reprimanded at school, getting in trouble arguing with teachers or peers. Furthermore, the defiant behavior that accompanies this disorder can make it very hard for a young person with ODD to establish and maintain interpersonal relationships. For these reasons, and many more, receiving therapy at an ODD treatment center should be sought as soon as possible. There are many effective treatment options available that can help your child learn how to better manage their behavior.
Types of Treatment Offered at SUWS of the Carolinas
At SUWS of the Carolinas we provide four different treatment tracks which are designed to meet the distinct needs of all of our students, including those with oppositional defiant disorder. Each track varies according to age, maturity level, presenting challenges, as well as social and adaptive development of our students. These four distinct tracks include:
- Approach: For adolescents, ages 14-17, who are struggling with autism spectrum disorder, social issues, social avoidance, technology addiction, and more.
- Phoenix Outdoor: For adolescents, ages 14-17, with substance abuse and co-occurring disorders.
- Seasons: For pre-teens, ages 10-13, who are battling ADHD, defiance, entitlement, and poor social skills.
- SUWS: For adolescents, ages 14-17, who are struggling with anxiety, depression, emotion regulation, learning differences, and trauma.
All have a strong therapeutic foundation of evidence-based treatment practices and a holistic approach to health and wellness. Additionally, the treatment curriculum offered at SUWS of the Carolinas is designed to support the growth of each student and is based on a level system. Each level carries a specific intention, measurable objectives, and can be individualized for each student’s needs. The admissions process will help you determine which track is the right fit for your child.
Throughout the duration of therapy, all students will go on multi-day wilderness expeditions where they will participate in many challenging experiences and activities. After each wilderness expedition, students will then spend a week at our base camp, which is used as an extension of the treatment process. Some of the therapeutic methods used in the treatment of oppositional defiant disorder may include the following:
Medication management: Generally, medications are not used in the treatment of oppositional defiant disorder unless there is a co-occurring disorder present. The use of medication in your child’s treatment plan will be a mutual decision between you and your child’s psychiatrist, whom they will meet with on an as-needed basis. Additionally, our psychiatrist is available at base camp every other week in the fall, winter, and spring, as well as every week in the summer. We also have a registered nurse on staff and all of our field staff are trained in medication administration.
Individual therapy: Each student at SUWS of the Carolinas receives individual counseling sessions up to two times a week, where they will be able to meet one-on-one with a licensed mental health professional. Individual therapy can be extremely effective in helping a young person with ODD learn how to manage his or her anger and express feelings in a healthier way.
Group therapy: At our wilderness treatment center process groups are held on a daily basis, while therapy groups are held one to two times each week. Some of the topics covered in group include, but are not limited to: communication skills, bullying, mindfulness, social skills, anxiety, and emotion regulation.
Family therapy: Throughout the duration of a student’s stay, parents will engage in weekly calls with a SUWS therapist where they will be updated on their child’s progress and will be able to learn how to more effectively participate in their child’s therapy process. As part of our therapy, SUWS of the Carolinas provides family members with a two-day workshop, which is designed to help parents develop more positive communication skills, parenting skills, and help them connect to their child’s experience at our center. Finally, there are a number of family webinars available, which are provided to further support and involve parents in the therapeutic process.
Experiential therapy: In addition to traditional therapeutic methods, SUWS treatment center offers a number of other therapy activities, both at base camp and in the wilderness. Some of the activities our students can participate in include:
- Therapy certified dogs
- Expressive arts
- Ropes course
- Trap building
- Trail navigation
- Tree identifying
Continuing Care and Levels of Treatment
Upon completion of treatment at SUWS of the Carolinas, students will participate in a three-day graduation process, where they and their families will come together and will participate in final closing sessions before reintegrating back into a complete family unit.
During the graduation process, parents will be reunited with their children and will spend a night in the wilderness where they will practice establishing new behavior patterns while still under the supervision of the SUWS of the Carolinas staff. On the last day of graduation, a ceremony honoring the accomplishments of each graduate will be held prior to his or her departure.
As part of the treatment process here at SUWS of the Carolinas, we also provide each student and his or her family with transitional planning to help determine the most appropriate placement upon graduation from our program. SUWS therapists will coordinate aftercare planning and discharge with parents, referring professionals, and the family transition specialist, as needed. Our therapists and other mental health professionals will work diligently to make the transition to the next phase of treatment as smooth as possible.
At SUWS of the Carolinas, we are devoted to providing each and every student with the highest level of care possible. Through wilderness expeditions and a wide array of therapeutic interventions while in treatment at our center, your child will discover his or her inner strengths while also increasing self-awareness and self-esteem, all of which will help him or her lead a more successful future.
If you are asking yourself, “does my child suffer from oppositional defiance disorder?” don’t hesitate to call one our helpful admissions staff to learn about the life-changing therapy offered at our treatment center.