Practice Parameter for the Assessment and Treatment of Children and Adolescents With Reactive Attachment Disorder and Disinhibited Social Engagement Disorder

and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) Committee on Quality Issues (CQI)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Scopus citations


This Practice Parameter is a revision of a previous Parameter addressing reactive attachment disorder that was published in 2005. It reviews the current status of reactive attachment disorder (RAD) and disinhibited social engagement disorder (DESD) with regard to assessment and treatment. Attachment is a central component of social and emotional development in early childhood, and disordered attachment is defined by specific patterns of abnormal social behavior in the context of “insufficient care” or social neglect. Assessment requires direct observation of the child in the context of his or her relationships with primary caregivers. Treatment requires establishing an attachment relationship for the child when none exists and ameliorating disturbed social relatedness with non-caregivers when evident.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)990-1003
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2016



  • disinhibited social engagement disorder
  • indiscriminate behavior
  • indiscriminate friendliness
  • indiscriminate social behavior
  • reactive attachment disorder

Cite this