ACT for Adolescent OCD

Document Type


Journal/Book Title/Conference

Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies


Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies


Washington, DC

Publication Date



There is growing support for the use of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) as a treatment for adults with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). No research has been published to date on the use of ACT as a treatment for adolescent OCD. To begin investigating ACT for youth OCD, a multiple baseline study was conducted. The primary measure was self-monitoring of compulsions and assessor completed (CYBOCS). Three adolescent participants, ages 12 to 17, were treated with 8 to 10 sessions of ACT (without exposure). Results showed that the intervention was successful for all participants, with a 40% mean reduction in self-reported compulsions. Near absence of compulsions was reported by two of three participants at posttreatment. CY-BOCS ratings decreased by an average of 28.2%. Treatment procedures were rated by participants and parents as highly acceptable. Experimental and clinical implications of iv results are discussed. Data suggest that ACT may be a viable treatment as an alternative or an adjunct to exposure-based treatments.

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