Managing Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
It can come as a surprise to many parents who may wonder whether it is possible, or even desirable, to classify psychiatric disorders in preschool children. But let face it, there is a possibility that your child may be suffering from a psychiatric disorder. There is always a mandate for every parent to study the emotional and behavioral changes that your child is experiencing right from his/her toddler stage. You need to look out for anything which is abnormal about how the child behaves or perceives things and in case of any melodramatic event, then its best to seek early medical attention. The child could be have a mental health condition, such as Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD).
Among the behaviors that you need to look out for include eating habits, sleeping habits, anxiety issues, relationship issues, addictive behaviors, health issues and depression among other changes which can be outlined clearly by a clinician.
A comprehensive study need to be carried out if your child exhibits some of these behaviors before you can rule out if the child needs medical attention. If as apparent you fail to recognize such behaviors, a child may feel isolated and misunderstood and may become irritable and with time the condition may lead to depression of a worse condition.
Early Medical Attention Can Enable Children to Lead a Normal Life
My nephew suffered from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder OCD (OCD) back while he was 9. The condition was frightening to him and there was need to provide him with all the support that he need to overcome his distress. The good thing was I was a nurse and living under the same room, I decided that I would do everything to help him feel loved and part of the family.
OCD is usually caused by an imbalance of the neurotransmitter Serotonin. Serotonin is responsible for reactions to emotional stimuli such as happiness, sadness, fear etc. This explains why a child suffering from OCD can be easily overwhelmed and feel unloved and isolated. Therefore there is need to show love and support to the child.
What normally happens is that the uptake of the chemical is usually blocked from the brain hence the brain gets a hard time translating the impulses in a correct manner hence there is an overreaction to the stimuli creating an obsession for an activity. The obsession can negatively affect a patient because they feel the need to repeatedly do same tasks as they try to mitigate the emotional stimuli.
Such devastating is how the condition can be. Here I was with a 9 year old nephew who foresaw an imminent death to his younger sister. He was so obsessed with his thoughts that he always ensured that his sister was close to him always. There were times that he would sneak out of his class, to go to his sisters class to ensure that she was well. It was really becoming hard for him to concentrate without seeing his sister. He even never let her play with the rest and this became so embarrassing to his younger sister who didn’t know what was going on with his brother.
Make a Child Understand that all Will Be Well to Boost Self Esteem
Luckily, if detected early, the condition can be controlled and allow a patient to lead a normal life. We took the child to see a psychiatrist and we had him put under medication. We were also advised to see a child psychologist for psychotherapy so that the child could cut down some tendencies that he had developed as well as his obsession.
This helped the boy and within the next two years, we were able to reduce his obsession and the psychologist helped him increase his self esteem. Despite all that, we usually monitor him always and give him all the love and support he need, because there is always the fear that the symptoms may recur with time, if he feels inadequate in any way.
Always be on the lookout for strange behaviors in your child if at all you have to help a child who has a psychiatric disorder. In such instance, always seek medical attention early and all through help the child in understanding that the condition can be managed and thus you will increase the self worth of the child and make him/her feel loved.