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Pica Symptoms and DSM-IV Diagnosis

Pica Symptoms and Diagnosis Overview:

Pica symptoms and diagnostic criteria follow below. While some of these Pica symptoms may be recognized by family, teachers, legal and medical professionals,  and others, only  properly trained mental health professionals (psychologists, psychiatrists, professional counselors etc.) can or should even attempt to make a mental health diagnosis. Many additional factors are considered in addition to the Pica symptoms in making proper diagnosis, including frequently medical and psychological testing considerations. This information on Pica symptoms and diagnostic criteria are for information purposes only and should never replace the judgement and comprehensive assessment of a trained mental health clinician. 


Diagnostic criteria for 307.52 Pica

A. Persistent eating of nonnutritive substances for a period of at least 1 month.

B. The eating of nonnutritive substances is inappropriate to the develop­mental level.

C.      The eating behavior is not part of a culturally sanctioned practice.

D. If the eating behavior occurs exclusively during the course of another mental disorder (e.g., Mental Retardation, Pervasive Developmental Disorder, Schizophrenia), it is sufficiently severe to warrant independent clinical attention.

Also, See: Other Disorders Usually First Diagnosed in Infancy, Childhood, or Adolescence

Other Mental Health Diagnostic Symptoms and Criteria


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