Many parents contact us with concerns about their child possibly having obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Let’s discuss what OCD is, and when to be concerned and seek professional help.
What is OCD?
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a disorder that is very debilitating for children. Kids with OCD may have repetitive thoughts or actions that they have little to no control over. These are called compulsions, and can be things like washing, counting, checking, or repeating words. Obsessions are usually harder to spot, but can include things like hoarding, religious or sexual obsessions. These compulsions and obsessions interfere with a child’s life. Usually it starts in children 9-13 years old, but it can start earlier or later than that. It is more common in boys than girls when it starts in childhood.
What should I do if this sounds like my child?
Please seek professional help from a child psychiatrist if the description above sounds like it could be your child. There are treatment options than can help your child and family with this diagnosis. A child psychiatrist can determine what the cause of the symptoms is (it might not be OCD, but something else), and create a plan to help your child. You can see a child psychiatrist via your computer or phone here on NowPsych.