Though, in subsequent sessions, we may continue talking about what is contributing to your child’s obsessive thoughts and behaviors, we place more emphasis on interrupting unhelpful thoughts and behavior patterns. We do this through a few different therapeutic methods.
One method we use is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which focuses on how thoughts, emotions, and behaviors influence and feed off one another. We also use exposure therapy, where we safely walk them through situations where they may feel the need to complete their impulses. Using their imagination, we will collaborate with your child to use what they learned with us in real-time to interrupt their behaviors.
At times, we will even suggest keeping a video journal or writing about experiences so children can see how they modified their behaviors between sessions for treatment of OCD.
The Parent’s Role In Treatment For OCD In Children
Helping kids learn how to cope with OCD is a collaborative experience in counseling. Parents are strongly encouraged to be part of this process by providing information and learning strategies that help their children. Parents also need to help keep their children accountable for practicing altered behaviors between sessions. When a child resists their compulsions, it can be helpful for parents to use positive reinforcement techniques, which we can teach in our sessions together.
In some cases, many parents believe their children may be exhibiting signs of OCD after an illness. Known as PANDAS, OCD behaviors occur after a child recovers from a strep throat infection. If you believe this may be the situation for your child, please let us know so we can treat their behaviors because of PANDAS.
In the past, you may have felt like there was no light at the end of the tunnel. Treating OCD in children is a process that takes time, but it provides a remarkable transformation in their life.