According to the International OCD Foundation, one in 100 adults likely have obsessive compulsive disorder. And up to 1 in 200 children have what's commonly called OCD - that's about 500,000 kids across the country.
Kids who suffer from the disorder typically repeat specific rituals over and over again, such as constantly washing and cleaning; erasing or rewriting; confessing or apologizing; or saying lucky words or numbers. It can be debilitating, but it also can be managed with the right treatments. According to the foundation, early recognition of OCD symptoms is key.
In an effort to raise awareness, this week is OCD Awareness Week and a panel of experts in diagnosing and treating obsessive compulsive disorder will offer a question and answer session on Thursday in Raleigh.
Understanding and Getting Help for OCD: An Evening with Experts is 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 17, at Cameron Village Library, Room 202, 1930 Clark Ave, Raleigh.
The panel includes:
- Jon Abramowitz, Ph.D., a professor and director of the OCD/Anxiety Disorders Clinic at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and author of a self-help book for people with OCD entitled, “Getting Over OCD: A 10-Step Workbook for Taking Back Your Life.”
- Aureen Wagner, Ph.D., clinical child psychologist and founder of The Anxiety Wellness Center in Cary. She has authored several books on OCD, including: “Up and Down the Worry Hill,” “What to do When your Child has OCD,” and “Treatment of OCD in Children and Adolescents.”
- Jeffrey Sapyta, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University Medical Center, where he recently completed a family-based OCD intervention study for younger children with OCD symptoms.
- Annette Perot, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist in private practice in Durham, where she has specialized in the treatment of adults with OCD and related disorders for the past 19 years.
They'll also share information about the formation of an International OCD Foundation Affiliate group in North Carolina.
The session is designed for both people who want to learn about OCD treatments for themselves or their loved ones, Sapyta tells me.
If you have questions, contact Jon Abramowitz, Ph.D. at 919-843-8170.