Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Treatment For Children

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder – Parents Helping Their Kids

Children, just like adults, can suffer from OCD, but unlike adults, children usually don’t know how to handle the problem on their own. This is why it is very important for parents of children with OCD to know as much as they can about the different types of obsessive compulsive disorder treatment in children that are available today.

When parents notice strange habits or peculiar mannerisms in their children, they usually dismiss it, thinking that it is just something that will go away eventually, but if these quirks are actually symptoms of OCD, they can eventually turn into a significant problem that can haunt the child not only through childhood and adolescence but all the way into adulthood as well.

Evidence is strong that OCD tends to run in families. Many people with OCD have one or more family members who also have it or other anxiety disorders influenced by the brain’s serotonin levels. Because of this, scientists have come to believe that the tendency (or predisposition) for someone to develop a serotonin imbalance that causes OCD can be inherited. Article source.

Effective Treatment Methods

OCD In Children

OCD In Children

When left untreated, OCD can really be detrimental to a child’s life. It can make him the subject of teasing and bullying in school and in the neighborhood.

It can also lead lasting effects that can considerably reduce the quality of life that the child may have once he is an adult. In order to avoid such problems, it is the parents’ responsibility to find the best obsessive compulsive disorder treatment for their children as soon as possible.

The most commonly used treatment involves the use of both medications and therapy. In adults, some of the typical pharmaceutical medications used for the treatment of OCD are paroxetine, sertraline, fluoxetine, fluvoxamine and clomipramine. There are also homeopathic and OCD herbal medicines for children and adults too.

While these do show excellent results in adults, they can cause several side effects, which is why parents are usually reluctant to use them for their children.

In fact, even experts agree that the better obsessive compulsive disorder treatment in children is subjecting them to regular therapy. Under the guidance of a professional therapist or psychologist, a child will be able to come to terms with his fears and eventually overcome his OCD.

Although it is by far the best OCD and anxiety treatment for children, parents should not rely only on therapy if they want their kids to get better in the soonest possible time. In addition, parents should also be prepared to show as much support as they can as the child goes through the treatment process. Expectations have to be adjusted, patience has to be lengthened, and encouragement should be given at all times.

Behavioral therapy involves gradually exposing kids to their fears, with the agreement that they will not perform rituals, to help them recognize that their anxiety will eventually decrease and that no disastrous outcome will occur. For example, kids who are afraid of dirt might be exposed to something dirty, starting with something mildly bothersome and ending with something that might be really dirty. Kidshealth.org

For exposure to be successful, it must be combined with response prevention, in which the child’s rituals or avoidance behaviors are blocked. For example, a child who fears dirt must not only stay in contact with the dirty object, but also must not be allowed to wash repeatedly.

Finally, parents should understand that having OCD doesn’t make a child an embarrassment. It is just a condition that can happen to anybody and that is completely reversible. With adequate love and support from the family, a child with OCD will be able to overcome the problem quite easily.

Many of us have experienced obsessive actions or thoughts, but do not suffer with the disorder. It is so important to understand rather than condemn. Do you or do you know someone suffering with OCD? Please share your thoughts and comments below.

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About Jennifer Johnson

I suffered with social anxiety and stress for years. I discovered what my triggers were and learned to control them. Hopefully some of the natural anxiety relief techniques I have tried, will also be your solution.


  1. Chetan Vengurlekar says

    Most kids with OCD realize that they really don’t have to repeat the behaviors over and over again, but the anxiety can be so great that they feel that repetition is “required” to neutralize the uncomfortable feeling. And often the behavior does decrease the anxiety — but only temporarily. In the long run, the rituals may worsen OCD severity and prompt the obsessions to return.

    • Jennifer Johnson says

      Hi Chetan,

      Thank you for your comment and for visiting!

      I have a friend with OCD and she just can’t stop her rituals. As a very young child she had no understanding of her obsessions and her parents despaired, as they could not reason with her.

      So I tend to disagree with your statement about them realizing. Many do not, but as they grow into adulthood their obsessions become more noticeable as they are able to compare their own actions with their peers.

      If only they could realize their OCD behaviors were not necessary…but as someone who has suffered with anxiety…there is no rhyme or reason.

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