What is Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?
There are two main characteristics to Obsessive Compulsive Disorders (OCD), which are obsessions and compulsions. Obsessions are unrealistic thoughts or feelings and compulsions are uncontrollable actions that are often repeated to reduce stress and fear.
A person with OCD will obsess about unrealistic thoughts and feel a need to control those thoughts through compulsive, repetitive actions. For example, a person may think the front door is unlocked and a robber will get in the house, so they unlock and lock the door ten times in a row every night before bed. OCD is common in children and teens, and can start as early as age seven, according to Anxiety BC.
Signs and Symptoms
- Fear of accidentally hurting oneself or others
- Compulsive behavior
- Obsessions with exactness
- Performing rituals
- Treatment and Management
Parents may want to help their child with their compulsions, but it is best to consult a medical professional. This way the child can be recommended the appropriate treatment, including medication or therapy, which will help the child overcome their fears and obsessions. Getting enough sleep, exercising and eating well, and being surrounded with positive and supportive people will also help reduce OCD symptoms.
Feature image Martin Fisch