Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder & OCD Symptoms

We know that it’s vital that you and your whole family get the right support at the right time when a child or young person is struggling with O.C.D. This is where you’ll find out how to find help with O.C.D.


OCD Symptoms

OCD, which stands for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, is a mental health condition when a person has thoughts that are obsessive. That means that a person with OCD might have bad or unwanted thoughts that they can’t stop thinking about. They also might have compulsive behaviours. A compulsion is when somebody repeats actions or thoughts that help them stop feeling anxious. That could be something like turning lights on and off, checking windows are locked, washing hands. It could be doing these things in a certain way or a certain number of times.

OCD can be really distressing and interfere with day to day life but there is help and things can get better.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Getting Help

If you are the parent of a child or young person who you think might have OCD, it’s really important that they don’t feel embarrassed or worried about finding help. You can find help by going to your GP. They can chat everything through and can make a referral to a local psychological therapy service.

Find Help here for Children and Teens with OCD

If you would like to find out more about OCD and the kind of help and support you can get, then please check out these organisations...

The Mersea Island Festival has been an annual event each August at Essex Outdoors Mersea. The Festival aims to bring together young people with or without a physical or learning disability. Camps are ideal for Inclusive clubs, Phab and Gateway clubs, Youth Groups and families with disabled young people. They provide an opportunity to try out new activities, make new friends and have loads of fun!!!

OCD Youth

OCD Youth aims to increase awareness and access to support for anyone under 25 affected by OCD. OCD Youth is run by young people with OCD, for young people with OCD. We organise trips and outings, run online meet-ups, take part in campaigning activities, manage a youth website and social media channels, write articles and awareness resources, produce videos and media, and much more.  They also have an email heldesk and an online forum.
Helpdesk: youthhelpline@ocdaction.org.uk


OCD UK work with, and for children and adults with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, health professionals and researchers. They have a phone and email helpdesk, organise support groups, have loads of information and can help support people in their community.

ocd action

OCD Action is the national charity focusing on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). They provide support and information to anybody affected by OCD. They have a phone and email support as well as local groups all over the UK.

No More Panic

No More Panic's website gives lots of advice about managing mental health conditions such as OCD, panic attacks, anxiety and phobias. There is a chat option as well as a forum if you wish to speak with other people facing the same issues.

The Mix

If you're under 25 you can talk to The Mix for free on the phone, by email or on their webchat. You can also use their phone counselling service, or get more information on support services you might need.


Fantastic resource for MIND about OCD symptoms, treatments and lots of information.

Other sources of help....

Here are some other places you can find help, information and support. They may not be OCD specific but as broader mental health charities, they'll have lots of help that you might find really useful.

Young Minds has lots of ways to help children and young people who are experiencing any kind of mental health problem. They run a range of schemes to help promote good mental health in schools across the UK as well as guidance towards more 1 to 1 support. There is also a managed service by young people for young people to be able to talk with someone who understands their problems.

You can also call the Young Minds Parent's Helpline on: 0808 802 5544 (Monday to Friday 9.30am – 4pm, free for mobiles and landlines)

Student Minds

Student Minds run groups so that students experiencing mental health difficulties have access to a supportive environment in which they can talk about life, university and what they are doing to keep their lives on track.

Big White Wall is a peer to peer support network for members. It's a safe space to discuss any emotional problems and get advice on support on any kind of mental health concerns. There are also tools and advice available for you to access to help improve your wellbeing. This is a UK wide support website.

Browse all mental health support

Use our directory to find lots of other charities and organisations here to help you and your whole family.

Not sure where to turn?


Contact our helpdesk

Do you need specific help for your disabled or special needs child? Click here to tell us more about what you're looking for and our helpdesk team will do their very best to find you what you need. All of our advice is confidential and we will not share your details or personal information with anyone.