Is it Pediatric OCD or Just a Phase?
As you have probably guessed, OCD is made up of two parts – obsessions and compulsions. The Pediatric OCD evaluation below will help you and your child familiarize yourselves with them most common unwanted thoughts and/or images (obsessions) that bring with them unpleasant sensations ranging from worry to fear to disgust, shame, and guilt. Your child might then perform specific behaviors (compulsions) aimed at easing those sensations or reducing the chances that feared consequences will occur. These are not infrequent thoughts or occasional behaviors but intense thoughts that just won’t go away and repetitive behaviors children do that temporarily reduce their anxiety.
To help you identify what your upsetting thoughts are, check off the ones in the list below that fit for you.
- Something bad is going to happen to me or those I care about, such as my family members, friends, pets, etc.
- I may have done something bad or illegal (like cheating, breaking rules, lying, or stealing) that will get me in trouble
- I often think about doing bad things to other people, or want to do bad things to hurt others on purpose
- I worry about being gay (or straight), even though I am sure I am not
- I have thoughts that have to do with inappropriate sexual acts
- Maybe I did something by accident that hurt someone or ruined something
- There are bad luck or good luck things such as numbers, words, names, or moving in special ways that I have to be very careful about doing the right way or something bad will happen to me or someone I care about
- Germs, dirt, or chemicals are everywhere, and I have to be very careful to stay clean and keep my things clean or I will get sick, or make other people sick
- I have bad thoughts about God, my minister, and other religious/church stuff
- I have to do my schoolwork perfectly and get perfect grades, or have to do other things perfectly, like the way I arrange things in my room
- I worry I have a life threatening disease like AIDS or Cancer.
You might believe that you have to perform certain actions to decrease the disturbing thoughts, feelings, or urges that just won’t go away. The list below might help you identify the rituals that OCD might tell you to perform in order to get some relief from your disturbing thoughts.
- Washing my hands, showering too much, or changing my clothes too many times
- Cleaning my stuff too carefully or too many times
- Having to say special words, numbers, or names, as if I were doing a magical ritual to keep bad things from happening
- Having to do things (like getting dressed, packing my backpack, etc.) in a special order
- Checking my homework or test answers over and over to make sure they are totally correct
- Making my letters perfect when I am writing (or else having to erase them and write them over a lot)
- Saying things perfectly to make sure I didn’t lie, insult somebody, or say something that wasn’t correct
- Checking myself to make sure I’m not getting sick or that there isn’t something wrong with the way I look
- Asking my parents the same questions over and over again
- Having to pray way too much to make sure God isn’t angry with me for doing or thinking bad things, and sometimes having to say these prayers perfectly
- Having to redo things many times, like putting my clothes on, writing things, getting out of chairs or beds, walking up or down stairs, or going in and out of doorways again and again, almost like a magic ritual to keep something bad from happening
- Apologizing too many times to other people or to God because I thought I said or did something wrong
- Having difficulty making decisions until I’m sure I made the perfect one
- Arranging the things in my room to make sure they look perfect, and having to fix them right away if someone moves even one of them
In order to help me understand your obsessions and compulsions that are disturbing you and upsetting your life, please print out your answers and bring with you to your first session.