Recommendations for a therapist and psychiatrist

Our 15-year old grandchild is experiencing anxiety and/or OCD. Our doctor has prescribed medication, but we still need someone for an accurate diagnosis.  We are looking for a recommendation for a therapist for assessment and treatment, preferably someone who does work with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.  Also, need recommendation for a psychiatrist to prescribe/monitor medication.

Parent Replies

Parents, want to reply to this question? Sign in to post.

We had trouble finding a psychiatrist who would see kids under 16 years old (our son was 15 at the time). We finally found Dr. Hessenthaler with Mindful Health Solutions ( in Oakland and have been very happy with him. 

I would check out the International Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Foundation to find a pediatric psychiatrist: www.

It was really heartbreaking to see our kiddo spend so many hours doing compulsions (washing hands), and it effected really... everything. 

It's a journey - but if you can find a doctor who integrates CBT and medication management, that's the ideal.

I don't have a recommendation, but I posted on BPN seeking recs a few months ago, so maybe there's a response in the archives that might be useful to you and your grandchild. CBT/ERP, the go-to therapy for OCD, did not work for my niece, despite trying for a long time. Leaning into the obsessions seemed to make it worse. Stanford has a couple of clinical trials going on right now, so we are keeping an eye on those results. Unfortunately, there's no magic bullet and everyone's OCD is different. Good luck to your grandchild. OCD is so hard; patience and love are needed in big doses.

Please check iocdf website. Need therapist trained in OCD (or to rule it out). We wasted time with CBT (although of course it’s important for accompanying issues). 

We worked with Dr. Raymond Hearey (psychiatrist) in Orinda and found him to be knowledgeable about OCD and other anxiety-based disorders, and appropriate medication regimens for those disorders.  We liked him.  He doesn't do CBT, but will coordinate with another therapist in regards to the medication and CBT combination.  Very expensive and doesn't take insurance, but you can apply to your insurer to be reimbursed for his charges after the fact (all depends on what your insurance will pay for.)

We have worked with Mark Balabanis in Oakland as a therapist and liked him.  He has a gentle approach, and is well informed about CBT and OCD issues.

My teen has been seeing ilyana romanovsky for OCD for a couple years. It has greatly improved the quality of our lives.