Do you find yourself washing your hands excessively or cleaning things repeatedly and unnecessarily? Are you driven by uncontrollable urges to do things perfectly?
If you or someone you care about is experiencing symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, the counselors and medical staff at iTherapy.com can help.
Signs, Symptoms and Solutions for OCD
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a type of mental illness that triggers repeated unwanted thoughts that, in turn, causes anxiety, fear and worry. Those thoughts then cause uncontrolled, repetitive and often ritualized behaviors designed to reduce the associated anxiety. People with OCD usually realize their obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors are irrational but they are unable to stop.
OCD causes the brain to get stuck on a particular thought or urge. For example, someone may check the door 15 times to make sure it’s really locked or wash their hands until they’re scrubbed raw.
- Fear of harm to yourself or loved one
- Driving need to do things perfectly
- Fear of getting dirty or infected
- Excessive washing or cleaning
- Repeated actions
- Extreme hoarding
- Preoccupation with sexual, violent or religious thoughts
- Aversion to particular numbers
Generally, a combination of medications and counseling is more effective than either option alone. Antidepressants that include selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (or SSRIs such as Prozac and Zoloft) are commonly used. Additionally, counseling can help you identify and reduce irrational fears and subsequent behaviors.