The Importance of Health Checks

The Importance of Health Checks

Is Your Child Suffering from Contamination OCD?

by Roberta Craig

All parents tend to worry about their kids and want them to develop steadily and consistently without any problems. Yet sometimes, it can be difficult to tell if something is "not quite right" from a psychological point of view, especially when it comes to difficult conditions like OCD. How can you tell if your kid has what's known as contamination disorder, and what can you do about it?

Shapes and Forms

Obsessive-compulsive disorder can come in many shapes and forms. Many people think it is simply to do with being neat and tidy at all times, but in reality, it can be much more involved.

Contamination OCD

Your child may be suffering from contamination OCD, and this has become ever more prevalent in recent times due to the threat associated with the pandemic. Kids are being fed a constant barrage of bad news about this invisible enemy and how it can contaminate surfaces all around them. If they were inclined to be careful before, then this situation could really aggravate and exacerbate what may already have become problematic.

If your child has contamination OCD, they worry about everything they may come into contact with. They also worry that they could become contaminated and spread this to other people, which could develop into a worst-case scenario.

How Does the Problem Manifest?

Of course, contamination OCD does not only cover hidden germs or visible dirt. Some kids may worry about unusual smells, for example, or may begin to associate people with issues for no obvious reason. Their anxiety levels may spike, and they may often hide themselves away rather than coming into contact with people, potentially contaminated situations or the invisible enemy — the virus. Alternatively, they may want to clean everything repeatedly and get stuck in habitual patterns that are difficult to break.

Be on the Lookout

When this condition has become acute, the associated behaviour should be rather obvious. However, it can be tricky to spot in the early days, and you should be on the lookout for warning signs. If your child finds difficulty sharing toys with others or wants to clean these toys before they even start playing, pay attention. Do they want to take more than one shower per day or appear to be repeatedly washing their hands for no real reason?

What Can You Do?

In the beginning, you can try to address some of these issues at home by teaching your kids about anxiety and coping skills. You may be able to get some educational materials or self-help books as part of this learning process. However, you may need to talk with an expert in this matter to get some professional help as well. Indeed, something like cognitive behavioural therapy could be helpful — but discuss these issues with a child psychology therapist before you go any further.


About Me

The Importance of Health Checks

Hello, my name is Liam and I live in Alice Springs, Australia. I work pretty hard every day out on my farm, so it isn't unusual for me to have aches and pains. I hate going to the doctor so I normally pop a couple of painkillers or open a cold beer to deal with the discomfort. However, my wife kept on nagging me to see a doctor, which I eventually did. The doctor at Fidelity Health Choice discovered that I had a rare infection which was causing the pain. After a course of drugs, I fully recovered. I now attend regular appointments. I hope you enjoy my health and wellbeing blog.