How can I support my child during the IOP program?

At OCD Anxiety Centers, we recognize the critical role that family support plays in the success of treatment. When a teen or young adult is undergoing intensive outpatient therapy, having a strong support system is an essential part of their successful recovery plan. Let’s go over some specific ways that parents and caregivers can provide this support to their loved ones during IOP treatment. We will also focus on specific strategies tailored to the unique challenges of OCD, anxiety, and trauma.

Educate Yourself About Your Child’s Diagnosis

Understanding the nature of OCD, anxiety disorders, or trauma and their impact on your loved one is essential. Take the time to educate yourself about the symptoms, triggers, and evidence-based treatments like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) for OCD, as well as techniques such as mindfulness and grounding exercises for anxiety and trauma. Review any and all parent materials, especially the parent manual shared with you by our team at the beginning of treatment. This invaluable resource will help you understand the diagnosis, program, and specific home activities for your child.

Foster Open Communication

Create a safe and supportive environment where your loved one feels comfortable discussing their thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Encourage open communication and be willing to listen without judgment. You can find more tips on fostering positive communication HERE. One of the best things you can do is to validate their emotions and experiences, even if you don’t fully understand or agree, validating their experience is KEY to creating trust. Remind them that you are on their team and that you want to help them succeed. Your confidence in them and their ability to successfully complete the program will be a lifeline when things are hard.

Participate Actively in Treatment

Take an active role in your loved one’s treatment by participating in family therapy sessions, attending support groups, and collaborating with the treatment team. Keep the lines of communication open between you, and the treatment team. Our family resources provide an opportunity to learn more about your loved one’s challenges and how you can best support them. It also allows you to address family dynamics, communication patterns, and any issues that may be contributing to or exacerbating symptoms.

For more, read More Ways to Support Your Child during the IOP Program.