3 Facts About OCD
You may have heard the term “OCD” used to describe a person who is being overly clean or organized. However, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is a very serious anxiety disorder that can consume the lives of people who have this condition. If think you may have OCD, it’s best to see a psychiatrist or psychologist who can give you the help you may need.
OCD symptoms are a combination of obsessive thoughts and automatic, routine behaviors that often become uncontrollable without professional help. One of the most difficult things to understand about OCD is that the sufferer often knows they are being irrational, but continues to act on the obsessions any way.
1. There Are Two Types of OCD
There are two types of OCD, but some people exhibit both:
- Obsessions are recurring thoughts that repeat again and again in the mind. They often are about negative events or other things that cannot be changed. These thoughts can interfere with daily life.
- Compulsions are certain habits that are done repeatedly. They usually start as a way to overcome obsessions, but end up causing terrible anxieties that add to the problems caused by OCD.
- Suffering from irrational fear of disease, bacteria, or being dirty
- Repeating highly superstitious or religious behaviors
- Displaying fear of causing harm, whether it is to themselves or loved ones
- Repeating the same action over and over again, for example, making sure oven is off again and again
- Having recurring negative thoughts
- Excessively checking in on others’ wellbeing
- Lining up objects and cleaning until it is “perfect”
- Being unable to throw anything out
3. There are Two Treatments for OCD
- Exposure therapy is the most common method for treating OCD. It repeatedly forces patients to face their fears, to uncover the core of their obsession. For example, those with an irrational fear of disease may be asked to drink out of a public water fountain or handle something they think is unclean.
- Cognitive therapy teaches patients the best ways to respond to obsessions and how to avoid compulsions. Doctors may prescribe SSRIs (selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors) to rebalance serotonin levels in the brain. This chemical is responsible for mood regulation, appetite, and sleep.
Instructions and Disclaimer: The content on this website is designed for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses. Always consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your health.
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