The obsessive-compulsive disorder appears to be rapid affecting kids and teens more compared to a few years back. For every 200 kids, you pick there is a tendency of a kid with suffering from an obsessive-compulsive disorder. It’s okay for kids to have thoughts, fears, worries, and impulses, however when these thoughts are unwanted and becoming annoying, then parents become troubled. Kids with OCD don’t have a clue of on how to get this thought out of their heads, so they engage in rituals, which provides them a brief moment of relief.
The impact of this mental illness on kids is very important. Parent and guardians should understand the implications of this disorder, in order for them to be able to provide kids suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder a way out.
The signs and symptoms of this illness are quite similar in both kids and adults. Although, some significant difference exists between them both. Symptoms of OCD in children appears to be similar to ADHD, autism, and Tourette’s syndrome. However, for a proper diagnosis please visit a medical practitioner.
Why are kids affected?
Experts regarding mental illness are yet to fully understand why this illness happens, although some factors contributing to the development of OCD are however addressed instead.
Environmental and biological factors are two major factors which the appearance of OCD in children depend on.
Biological factors have to do with insufficient neurotransmitters due to low serotonin levels in kids and environmental factors which have to with things kids experience while they grow like divorce and others.
Signs and symptoms
Every child suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder, have obsessions, mental images and fears have their general symptom. These mental illness forces these kids to engage some rituals which they believe offers them freedom from those obsession.
Below are examples of obsessions kid might have:
- Obsession with germs, dirt, illness
- Always having doubts on small matters, such as whether the stove is turned off
- Having extreme thoughts about a parent or guardian getting hurt
- Excessive worries about symmetry, order, and exactness
- Disturbing inappropriate thoughts which differ from personal religious training
- Excessive drive to know or remember facts that seem very trivial
- Paying unreasonable attention to every detail.
- Lots of worries about tragic incidents like a car accident or home intruder breaking in
- Violent thoughts and urges to perform those thoughts
The obsessions addressed above, also invoke some rituals in kids. Examples of such compulsion are listed below:
- Excessive repeated hand washing or sanitizing, over 100 times a day
- Frequently checking and rechecking things, just to be sure that the stove is turned off or door is locked
- Strictly following self-imposed rules of order like arranging personal items in the room in a particular way and becoming very upset if you disrupt the arrangement
- Counting and recounting things or fingers several times
- Always busy with sequencing or grouping objects
- Repeatedly and excessively asking the same questions
- Always repeating some phrases said by him or others
- Repeating sounds, words, numbers, or music to him- or herself.
Also, I recommend you to read Understanding Children With Obsessive Compulsive Disorder