Treatment for Childhood OCD
Except in the case of very young children, childhood OCD can be treated successfully in the same ways as adult OCD: with cognitive behavior therapy, medication, neurofeedback, or other methods. CBT can be quite effective in the hands of a therapist skilled in its use and practiced at working with children. It can, in fact, prove more successful more quickly with children than adults, because, again, kids don't necessarily believe that they have reasons for their behaviors, meaning there's one whole component that doesn't need to be addressed.
The cognitive part of CBT can be useful for children (and adults) or adolescents who are tormented by thoughts of harming themselves or others. As with adult OCD, the therapist may ask the child or adolescent to write down or discuss in detail his feared scenario, then evaluate how likely it really is that he will act on his thoughts.
A child (like an adult) might be taught to remind himself that “it's only a thought; a thought can't hurt anyone.”
For very young children, “play therapy,” which uses toys and games as communication tools, can be useful in conjunction with (but not as a substitute for) cognitive therapy.
A parent can help her child overcome OC fears and behaviors by working with the child's therapist or, in cases in which therapy is not available or effective, using a workbook or other self-directed program. There are now also books containing techniques that parents can use with younger children.
Getting teachers and other school officials on board may also prove helpful. If your child's teachers or administrators do not know much about OCD, you will want to help them get the information they'll need so that they can deal with it successfully. (That knowledge will likely come in handy with future students, as well.) The OC Foundation, books or a local or online parent or family support group can likely point you in the right direction when it comes to information, especially about working with school systems.