GPs are uniquely placed to detect and begin management – including exposure and response prevention therapy – of obsessive compulsive disorder in young people, guided by validated self-report measures and with the aim of achieving sustained remission.
- It is estimated that one in 50 children or adolescents has obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).
- Self-reported screening aids detection of OCD, and self-reported measurements of symptom severity enable treatment monitoring.
- Evidence-based treatments, especially the first-line treatment of exposure and response prevention (ERP), have large effect sizes.
- Family-based therapy may be needed to treat family accommodation of OCD symptoms (i.e. facilitating or participating in a child’s symptoms).
- Pharmacotherapy is typically indicated when symptoms persist despite the use of ERP.
- Sustained remission is the goal of treatment.