Services for Children and Families
Serious Emotional Disturbance (SED) is a term that applies to children and adolescents that have mental health conditions that impact their moods, emotions and behaviors and may impact their ability to get along with others. They often will have trouble in many life areas including home, school and the community.
The definition of a Serious Emotional Disturbance (SED) is:
"Serious Emotional Disturbance," according to the Michigan Mental Health Code is a diagnosable mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder affecting a minor that exists or has existed during the past year for a period of time sufficient to meet diagnostic criteria specified in the most recent diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association and approved by the department and that has resulted in functional impairment that substantially interferes with or limits the minor's role or functioning in family, school, or community activities.
The following disorders are included only if they occur in conjunction with another diagnosable serious emotional disturbance:
(a) A substance abuse order.
(b) A developmental disorder.
(c) "V" codes in the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders.
Examples of diagnoses that may qualify as Serious Emotional Disturbance include: Major Depression, Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, Anxiety Disorders, and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.