Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Is OCD affecting your life? Talk therapy and medical support can help you learn how to mange OCD. Here’s what you need to know!
OCD is a common mental health disorder where a person has obsessive thoughts AND compulsive behaviours. OCD can be very distressing and cause significant impairment to daily life.
An obsession is an unwanted and unpleasant thought, urge, or image that repeatedly enters your mind causing significant emotional distress, often resulting in feelings of anxiety, guilt, shame or disgust.
A compulsion is a repetitive behaviour or mental act that is a response to obsessive thoughts, with the idea that engaging in the compulsion will ease the distress caused by the obsession. For example, someone with an irrational fear of contamination (obsession) may engage in excessive handwashing (compulsion).
What causes OCD?
There are no known causes of OCD, but there are several factors associated with its development.
- You are more likely to develop OCD, if there is a history of it in your family. However, it is unclear whether genetic factors or environmental factors are associated with exposure to the disorder (i.e. learned behaviours).
- According to brain scans individuals with OCD have lower levels of serotonin and higher brain activity. OCD can be more common in people who have experienced traumatic life events. It is also not uncommon for it to develop in women who have given birth.
- One further factor which has been shown to contribute to the development of OCD is personality type. Individuals who are very neat and tidy or have high levels of anxiety may also be more likely to develop OCD.
Treatment Option for OCD – Book Now
There are two approaches to treatment when it comes to OCD.
- Medication can be offered in the form of anti-depressants to increase the level of serotonin in the brain.
- Psychotherapeutic Intervention: CBT has also been shown to be a very effective way of managing OCD. CBT will help individuals explore their thought patterns and learn how to manage obsessive thoughts without engaging in compulsions. OCD can range from mild symptoms to severe, requiring treatment within an adult mental health team.
Therapy has been shown to alleviate symptoms quicker than medication.
First steps if you think you have OCD
- If you have concerns that you might be suffering from OCD please contact your GP. Your doctor will help work out the best treatment plan to suit your needs.
- You can self-refer, or your GP can refer you to City Therapy.
- Our team of Psychologists and CBT therapists will work alongside your GP to develop a real plan to get you on the road to recovery.
- If you are experiencing symptoms that impact your daily life it is important that you seek assistance.
We’re here to help!