Hi. I am concerned that my fifteen year old daughter might have obsessive compulsive disorder, and I just wanted to know what your perspective is. She is a perfectionist and gets frustrated if things don't go perfectly or everything isn't in the right place. She will rearrange stacks of papers, or books until she gets them exactly right. She is very organized, but doesn't like to throw things away. She also erasers things over and over, like on her homework assignments, and I feel that because of the erasing, it takes her longer to complete the assignments. She is always checking to see if things are locked or closed, and checks repeatedly. She washes her hands frequently but not compulsively. Finally, she is a hypochondriac and is always thinking she is sick. She also will not eat or use anything that is expired because she is afraid that something bad will happen to her. Oh, I almost forgot. She counts repeatedly, sometimes out loud and sometimes I see her mouthing the numbers and using her fingers. So, what do you think?
You are corect in your thinking that your daughter displays Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. This condition responds well to cognitive-behavioral therapy, and it would make sense to arrange therapy with a therapist who (a) treats adolescents and (b) specializes in the cognitive-behavioral approach. The standard of care, depending on the severity of the condition, also calls for pharmacological treatment. OCD is a form of biologically-based emotional disordfer and that is why it responds well to a combination of therapy and medication. But the matter of medication depends on the severity.
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