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Homepage :: Adult disorders :: Obsessive-compulsive disorder :: Special considerations for children and adolescents

Special considerations for children and adolescents

  • In children, care needs to be taken to distinguish between normal rituals, which are common up to the age of about 10 years, and OCD.
  • Parents are often involved in maintaining the rituals by providing reassurance.
  • Children and adolescents may not recognize the excessive or unreasonable nature of their thoughts and rituals and may not wish to engage in therapy.
  • Very few drug treatments are licensed for children in the UK.
  • In children cognitive behaviour therapy has been shown to be as effective as clomipramine (ref 182).



182 de Haan E, Hodgduin KA, Buitecaar JK et al. Behavior therapy versus clomipramine for the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder in children and adolescents. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry 1998, 37(10): 1022-1029. (CII) This is a randomized controlled trial. Behaviour therapy is shown to be a good alternative to drug treatment.

Last edited: 26/1/2004

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