Some people are more obsessive than others as part of their personalities. But if you think your child has full-blown Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), the first thing to do is you’re your pediatrician screen them. Your child’s doctor may recommend a specialist for further evaluation and treatment. And if they get the diagnosis, don’t worry, there are many ways to help your child with OCD.
Keep reading to learn a few ways to alleviate their challenges and show your child that they can thrive, even with OCD. In fact, OCD is not always a liability. In fact, having obsessive qualities is often an asset. Some children with OCD do better in a home-schooling situation, particularly if they experience bullying or other threatening realities.
Also, some TV characters such as Monk, the detective with OCD, gives people an idea of what it’s like to live with OCD, as well as some of the hidden benefits.
Help your child with OCD
Give Your Child a Positive Purpose to Concentrate
People with OCD often concentrate for long periods of time. So, to help your child with OCD, avoid putting them in front of a television. Instead, take your child to the library and get them hooked on reading. Find a hobby they can focus their attention on and appreciate. Build up your child’s sense of confidence by helping them to see how OCD is sometimes an asset.
Explain the Gray Areas
Children with OCD often see things as black or white. They polarize, taking things to the extreme. When talking about characters in books, people in your life or on the news, talk about the gray areas. So, to help your child with OCD, explain that people are not all good or all bad but have nuances and make mistakes.
Avoid black-and-white thinking or becoming too punitive over small things. At the same time, avoid being too vague with a child who has OCD traits.
If possible, give your child a predictable routine to minimize any negative OCD habits. Children with obsessive compulsive disorder have a need for certainty and predictability. As a parent, provide a predictable bedtime, as well as a stable home. And always give your child a heads up about visitors, changes in schedule and routines.
Yes, You Can: Help Your Child with OCD
According to the experts, approximately one in 100 children have OCD or about 2.3 percent of the general population. Children with OCD have more difficulties in school, as well as anxiety and depression. If you notice your child is having a perfectionist attitude, it’s a sign of OCD, say researchers from the St. Louis-based Washington University School of Medicine. So, spend time with your child, reinforcing their time spent engaged in meaningful activities, reading, socializing and exploring hobbies.