Young people who have been treated for OCD have featured in a film designed to raise awareness and provide hope for parents whose children have the debilitating condition.
The film, called ‘OCD is not me’, was made in partnership with OCD Action, and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.
It features patients from across the UK who have been diagnosed with OCD and received treatment for it in the hope it will provide support for other children and their families.
OCD is a clinically recognised disorder which affects around 1-2 per cent of the population. It is debilitating and paralysing. People with OCD experience intensely negative, repetitive and intrusive thoughts, which cause high levels of anxiety. In an attempt to alleviate such anxiety, people with OCD feel compelled to engage in repetitive and distressing behaviours.
David Goldstone, whose daughter Sophie, was treated at the Michael Rutter Centre at Maudsley Hospital, ran the London Marathon to raise the funds to make the film.
David said: “We hope the film will help children with OCD and provide reassurance about the treatment that they will be receiving and will feature some interviews with other children who have been through the programme.
“When my daughter was extremely unwell I felt a hopelessness that I had never experienced. I found the OCD Action Helpline online and called. They gave me hope, reassurance and guidance.
“Following a referral and assessment my daughter had to wait a few months to start treatment at Maudsley Hospital. During this time things were tough and even basic activities were very difficult never mind going to a strange hospital. Had we seen a film like this then it would have made our journey easier.”
The film follows the stories of four young people and their families, reveals how they felt at the worst points in their illness and their journey to recovery.
OCD Action said: “There is a shocking statistic that the average delay between onset of symptoms of OCD and people getting treatment is 12 years; this needs to change. People are often ashamed to talk about their OCD for fear of being judged or misunderstood, but we are confident that this film can shine a light on what OCD is, and inspire young people to speak out and get the support and treatment they deserve.”
Dr Zoe Kindynis, Clinical Psychologist at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, said: “OCD is a very distressing and debilitating condition. However, it is also found to be treatable, with good recovery rates following Cognitive Behavioural Therapy with Exposure and Response Prevention. Therefore, we hope that this video raises awareness of OCD as a condition, encourages sufferers to seek professional support, and provides hope for recovery.”
The film, made by Catsnake, is available to watch at www.ocdisnotme.com.