Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Exposure and Response Prevention


Adolescent obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is often misdiagnosed and not effectively treated due to a lack of knowledge and resources. One of the main factors that contributes to these misdiagnoses is that there are a limited number of trained clinicians who specialize in adolescent treatment. Comorbidity among the diagnosis of OCD in adolescents also adds to the lack of effective treatment specific to OCD. Often OCD symptoms can remain hidden as these symptoms often manifest as heightened versions of normal behavior in response to normal thoughts and feelings, which may increase during puberty. Effective treatment of adolescent OCD decreases when parents reinforce maladaptive coping behavior such as asking questions, washing, and checking. Current effective treatments include cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), exposure and response prevention (ERP), and medication, all performed under the supervision of a clinician. To improve treatment availability for OCD, the development of a parent-based program may be the most practical option. This review compares successful common factors present in each type of treatment and investigates the possibility of adaptation within an environment that leads to a parent-based treatment program.

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