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OCD Tests For Teenagers

 

OCD teenager

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health disorder that is characterized by intrusive, unreasonable thoughts and/ or fears (obsessions) that commonly lead to compulsive, repetitive behaviors. OCD can manifest and affect people of all ages. OCD is a debilitating condition that greatly affects an individual’s quality of life as the symptoms of this condition make completing everyday tasks extremely challenging, if not impossible. While the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM-5) provide clear criteria for mental health professionals when diagnosing obsessive-compulsive disorder, there are several at-home tests to help teenagers understand if they are suffering from OCD. Obsessive-compulsive disorder can manifest if a variety of ways. As such, several OCD categories have been established. The most common OCD categories individuals fall into include the following: 

  • Checkers: repeatedly looking at and checking things such as alarm systems, lights, locks…etc.
  • Washers: fearing contamination, compulsively engaging in personal hygiene rituals (e.g., washing hands, showering, washing feet…etc.).
  • Hoarders: collecting things for fear that something bad may occur directly as a result of throwing items away. 
  • Doubters: continuously afraid that if something is not done perfectly the individual will be punished and/ or it will result in something terrible occurring.
  • Counters: the need to compulsively count things (e.g., steps, bottles, letters…etc.) and/ or have irrational superstitions connected to certain numbers.
  • Arrangers: must have everything arranged to perfectly reflect order and symmetry. 

Some teens could exhibit symptoms related to multiple categories, although it is most common for an individual to experience symptoms as they primarily relate to one of the above categories. 

OCD Tests

There are a variety of online self-screening resources and tests that can help an individual identify if they may be struggling with OCD (e.g., Child and Adolescent OCD Test, 3 Minute Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Test, Do I have OCD?, OCD Self Test, etc.). While completing these tests does not provide a professional diagnosis, they can illuminate a need for further evaluation. In order to obtain the most effective treatment, it is essential to be properly evaluated and accurately diagnosed by a mental health provider. 

Diagnostic Criteria

The clinical diagnosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder is generally concluded after a thorough psychiatric evaluation and physical exam. A psychological evaluation is essential as it enables the clinician to gain insights into a teen’s behavior patterns, symptoms, thoughts, and feelings. This can help the evaluating clinician determine if the young person’s obsessions and/ or compulsions are actively interfering with his or her ability to function and quality of life. Many mental health professionals that are capable of diagnosing OCD closely adhere to the criteria provided by the American Psychiatric Association published in the DSM-5 listed under the category Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders. The current diagnostic criteria for OCD include:

  1. The presence of obsessions, compulsions, or both
  2. Obsessions and/ or compulsions that are time-consuming (at least an hour per day) and/ or result in clinically significant distress and/ or impairment in occupational, social, and/ or other areas of functioning
  3. OCD symptoms are not attributable to physiological effects of another mental condition (e.g., side effects of medication, substance use disorder…etc.)
  4. The obsessive-compulsive disturbances are not better explained as symptoms of another mental disorder

There are many treatment options for teenagers diagnosed with OCD. Proper treatment for OCD can help a teen learn tools to effectively manage his or her symptoms.

For Information and Support

Seeking help is never easy, but you are not alone! If you or someone you know is in need of mental health treatment, we strongly encourage you to reach out for help as quickly as possible. It is not uncommon for many mental health difficulties to impact a person for the long term. The earlier you seek support, the sooner you and your loved ones can return to happy, healthy and fulfilling lives.

Our admissions team is available to answer any general questions regarding mental health issues, treatment, and/or specific questions about the program at Pacific Teen Treatment and how we might be able to help your family. We can be reached by phone 24/7 at 800-531-5769. You can also contact us via email at info@pacificrtc.com.

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