We all have our own, personal little quirks that make us who we are, and we all have our own, individual thoughts that shape our behavior. For the most part, these are things that should be celebrated as it’s what separates us from our peers – it’s what makes us unique and distinct.
With that said, these ‘quirks,’ ‘thoughts,’ and ‘behaviors’ are supposed to act in a positive way. They’re supposed to shape who we are as individuals – not damage or destroy it. Unfortunately, too many people in the world today see their own thoughts and behaviors get in their way of life.
These people are likely to be diagnosed with a mental illness called obsessive-compulsive disorder, more commonly known as OCD. According to estimates by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), OCD affects over 1% of the US population – over three million people.
What is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder?
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental disorder that’s characterized by unwanted, uncontrollable, reoccurring, or excessive thoughts, ideas, sensations, or behaviors. It affects people of all ages and genders, but is a treatable condition under the right circumstances.
People with OCD are known to get stuck in a cycle of obsessions and compulsions, which are:
- Obsessions – unwanted or persistent thoughts, images, or impulses that the patient has no control over, often resulting in great levels of distress or anxiety.
- Compulsions – repeated behaviors that are often done in response to the obsessions a patient has, usually in hopes of relieving distress or anxiety.
If not treated properly, OCD can truly take a toll on someone’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual, and social well-being. It’ll not only make it difficult to concentrate, but it’ll start to take away any and all quality you once had in your life – that’s what makes treatment so important.
What are the signs of OCD?
Understanding the signs of OCD and when it’s time to seek medical help is extremely important when diagnosing and eventually treating the condition. The earlier it’s detected, the sooner mental health professionals can start putting together a proven and effective treatment plan.
Let’s take a look at some of the most common signs of OCD:
- Fear of germs, bacteria, and contamination in general (obsession)
- Excessively washing your hands or cleaning household objects (compulsion)
- Taboo thoughts about sex, religion, or harm (obsession)
- Needing things to be in order or symmetrical (obsession)
- Ordering or arranging things in a particular way, even when not necessary (compulsion)
- Fear of losing, misplacing, or forgetting something, no matter how important or valuable it is (obsession)
- Repeatedly checking on things or making sure they’re not missing (compulsion)
Of course, those are just some of the signs that someone has OCD. Much like everyone has their own little quirks, those with OCD have their own unique obsessions and compulsions that make up their condition. For this reason, personalized and tailored treatment is necessary.
What is the Best Treatment for OCD?
While there is no cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all solution to obsessive-compulsive disorder, the best OCD treatment generally consists of a combination of therapy, medication, changes to one’s lifestyle, and other alternative treatments – the exact combination will vary by patient.
The most common therapy for OCD is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), more specifically exposure and response prevention (ERP) – a component of CBT. It involves exposing the patient to their obsessions, while fighting the urges and compulsions (preventing a response).
The most common type of medication prescribed for OCD are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Patients might also be asked to make certain lifestyle changes, such as eating a healthier diet, exercising regularly, following a healthy sleeping pattern, and more.
How to Find the Best OCD Treatment Programs in California
Did you know there are more than 200 classified mental illnesses in the world today? Even more surprising is that nearly one billion people live with a mental illness, and only about 75% of those in low-income areas will receive proper treatment, care, and attention.
Thrive Treatment is an outpatient rehab in Santa Monica, CA. If you’re interested in receiving the best treatment for OCD, then you’ll be pleased by what our experienced and passionate team at Thrive Treatment has to offer. Thrive Treatment provides mental health treatment in Santa Monica, CA.
Contact us today to learn more about our treatment and therapy for OCD – we can’t wait to help you succeed in your journey toward recovery.