Do you agonize over whether you've touched something "contaminated"?
Are you filled with irrational fears of hurting someone you love through your thoughts or actions?
Do you feel unsettled unless you do things in a certain order?
Are certain numbers, thoughts or items "lucky" or "unlucky" in an "over the top" sort of way?
Do you obsess about things that others take for granted- like whether you married the right person, or were 100% truthful in every detail of a conversation?
Are others constantly telling you to let go of perfectionism, or "move on" already?
If you identify with any of these questions you probably suffer from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).
I have attended specialized training in treating OCD, and have years of experience treating OCD and related anxiety disorders. My experience had led me to be optimistic that virtually anyone can learn techniques to overcome OCD!
OCD is characterized by two parts; obsessions, and compulsions. Obsessions are uncontrollable, unwanted thoughts. They usually feel intrusive, are preoccupying and may make you feel like you are "crazy", "weird" or "perverted". If you have OCD it is important to know that you are NOT any of those things- your brain simply has a tendency to "get stuck" on unhealthy thought patterns. This is not your fault and has nothing to do with your character or upbringing. It is simply the way your brain is wired.
Studies actually show that over 90% of people sometimes have "crazy" thoughts, but while most people just let them pass- knowing they don't mean anything- people with OCD get anxious by them, replaying them over and over in their minds.
If you have OCD, you may feel like a "broken record" of frightening thoughts plays in your head 24/7.
In all likelihood you have developed your own system for relieving that anxiety somewhat. The actions or thoughts you invoke in order to reassure yourself and feel calmed are called "compulsions". In technical terms, compulsions are repetitive, ritualized behaviors that make you feel safer and less uneasy.
OCD obsessions and rituals can center around anything and everything.
If you have OCD, you probably recognize that your obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors are irrational – yet you feel unable to resist them and break free.
Common obsessions are:
Common compulsions are:
Research on cognitive-behavioral OCD treatment (the type I am trained in) is very exciting! 90% of OCD patients who engage in therapy show initial improvement while 70% to 80% maintain their gains at 1year follow-up (W Fals-Stewart, AP Marks, J Schafer, 1993). In fact, while medication can sometimes be extremely helpful, cognitive-behavioral therapy is considered first line treatment for OCD. Numerous studies have shown that therapy alone is often enough to dramatically reduce symptoms, and that therapy with medication produces better results than medication alone. For mild-moderate OCD therapy is often relatively short term and can produce significant, long-lasting results!
Call or email today to being the process of feeling relief....