How to Befriend Your Growing OCD Brain
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) symptoms severely interfere in a person’s life quality. OCD treatments include psychotherapy and medication both but psychotherapy is found more effective while the medication supports to control the severe symptoms that need prompt treatment for instant relief. OCD is an increasingly identified mental health condition affecting more than 2 million adults in the United States. According to a recent study, 1 in 100 children and 1 in 40 adults have OCD. The most disturbing fact is that the majority of people suffering from OCD is not known to its problem; and, continues to suffer harming their personal, social and professional life.
What is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)?
OCD is characterized by the repetitive, intrusive and unwanted thoughts and excessive irrational desired to do specific actions (compulsions). OCD involves disturbing and unwanted images, thoughts and obsessions causing anxiety, depression, and discomfort. It is a mental illness that causes negative thoughts beyond personal control.
Obsessions are involuntary images, impulses or thoughts that you have repeatedly. The simple example of having an obsession is – you think that your family members will get hurt if they don’t put on particular clothing in the same order.
Compulsions are abnormal behaviors that you do again and again. The simple example of having compulsions is – you and others must wash the hands at least 7 times after touching a thing that may have germs.
What are the OCD Symptoms?
Most of the OCD patients know that their habits and thoughts don’t make any sense but they enjoy their acts. OCD symptoms can be put into two groups; surprisingly, both are interrelated:
|Obsessive Thoughts in OCD||Compulsive Behaviors in OCD|
|Obsessive fear of contamination, germs and, dirt||Compulsive bathing, showering, hand washing repeatedly|
|Fear of harm and danger||Compulsive checking doors, windows, electronic gadgets and computers|
|Fear of death||Constantly contacting someone you care the most|
|Fear/feelings relating to discarding||Saving useless things not needed in future|
|Fear of violating moral or religious rules||Compulsive praying; confessing multiple times a day|
|Fear of symmetry in a particular order||Compulsive urge to arrange & rearrange|
|Fear of having something “right”||Compulsive seeking reassurance from many people for being right|
Different Types of OCD:
Most of OCD symptoms fall in five OCD Categories:
- Symmetry & ordering
- Contamination / Mental Contamination
- Ruminations / Intrusive Thoughts
OCD Can be Treated – Befriend With OCD Brain:
If you experience any OCD symptom growing day by day, don’t worry; it can be treated. Recent researches around OCD have changed the way people used to think about OCD. Treatment course depends upon several factors like:
- What did work in the past
- Your attitude toward medication
- Your motivation for cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Symptoms severity
- Presence of other mental disorders like depression
Almost all the OCD types respond to the combination of cognitive behavior therapy, exposure response prevention (ERT) and medication. Out of the three, cognitive behavior therapy is most applied to treat the OCD permanently without delivering any side effect. The recent survey reports state that 75 % of OCD patients get cognitive behavioral therapy benefits.
Preparing for Cognitive Behavior Therapy to Treat OCD- Five Tips:
Cognitive Therapy for OCD becomes more effective if you too are active and committed. The following five tips will help you treat OCD at the earliest with least medication:
- Maintain OCD diary/log – OCD symptoms and allied problems keep changing; therefore, you can forget many things during the discussion with the psychotherapist. OCD interferes with your life in different ways; note down; it is itself a CBT exercise.
- Development the hierarchy of OCD fear/s – A hierarchical list of OCD problems helps the Psychotherapist to control the severest OCD problem first. The list reflects the patterns of problem development with particular causes.
- Set goal for OCD psychotherapy – Before approaching to a Psychotherapist, you must know what you want to achieve from a therapy session. You must have one or two realistic and measurable therapy goals. SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time Based) goals expedite the CBT results for OCD treatment.
- Help yourself – True, you can’t recover at your own by incorporating some suggested changes because these can’t replace the role of CBT expert but you can expedite the outcome by knowing the basics of OCD and CBT through online platforms.
- Eat and Sleep well- The numbers of people recovered from OCD accept that improving eating and sleeping pattern helped them a lot. Regular exercise, balanced diet, and regular sleep patterns deliver a positive impact on your mood.
|Challenging obsessive thoughts is the first step of your journey to befriend the growing OCD brain.|
If you experience any OCD symptoms or its related disorder, discuss with health care provider because it can be treated. Don’t shy in sharing the problems or symptoms because you are not the only person suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder brain.