Symptom presentation and severity can vary from child to child. It can also vary in each exacerbation. Below is a list of possible symptoms a child may exhibit. Not all need to be present. Not all possible symptoms are listed.
OCD (OBSESSIVE/COMPULSIVE DISORDER)
See OCD in a Young Child for a list of how OCD can present itself. OCD is not only obsessive hand washing!
This includes selective eating to full out food refusal.There can a variety of reasons why the child experiences this, including contamination fears, sensory sensitivities, trouble swallowing, fear of vomiting or weight gain, and more. If restrictive eating is resulting in severe weight loss, call your provider immediately.
Emotional lability includes not being able to control one’s emotional response. It may include uncontrollable crying or laughing. This is a neurological symptom.
IRRITABILITY AND AGGRESSION
This includes baby talk.
DETERIORATION IN SCHOOL PERFORMANCE
This includes deterioration in math skills, inability to concentrate, difficulty retaining information, and school refusal. School performance can also be a result of another contributing symptom, such as OCD or severe separation anxiety.
CHANGES IN HANDWRITING
This includes margin drifts and legibility.
Margin drift example by Dr. Susan Swedo 2014
This can include being sensitive to touch, sounds, and noise. Simple touches may feel like they are hurting. One may not be able to stand the way socks feel or the texture or temperature of certain foods. Sensory processing problems can also cause difficulty in finding an item when it is among a vast selection of items. For example, a child may have a hard time finding a shirt in a full dresser or finding words in a word search.SOMATIC SIGNS
This includes sleeping difficulties, enuresis, frequent urination, and bed wetting.
Below is an example of Choreiform Movements. Click the triangle to play the video. The child is attempting to hold his hands straight out and is trying not to move his fingers.
SEVERE SEPARATION ANXIETY
This includes both visual and auditory hallucinations.