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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a serious mental health condition that is often mischaracterized by stereotypes. OCD causes you to have unwanted and intrusive thoughts that cause an obsession, which result in the need to do repetitive behaviors, or compulsions. Clients with OCD feel that if they do not perform certain obsessive tasks, disaster will result. What does result is stress. If these habits or thoughts take up at least an hour a day, are beyond your control, aren’t enjoyable, or interfere with your daily life, it could be time to seek help. Two common symptoms of OCD are intrusive thoughts and contamination. With intrusive thoughts you think constantly about something that might never occur to another person. Contamination is a fear of things that might be dirty or a compulsive need to clean, which often stems from intrusive thoughts. An example is thinking about the germs on a doorknob. With OCD, you could fixate on the number of germs on the doorknob, not able to touch or turn it until you have performed a ritual like cleaning it several times, whereas someone without OCD may simply walk up to the door and touch the knob to open it. Once you complete the action, you may feel a small bit of relief. But most likely, you will experience this again at one point of your day. An obsessive thought turns into anxiety, you do the action, then feel a brief reprieve from anxiety, and then the cycle continues. One or any combination of psychotherapies can help, although talk therapy alone is not always successful. You may need to have medication prescribed and managed by a psychiatrist. At Elite DNA Behavioral Health, both types of mental health professionals are on staff, making cross-collaboration easy and convenient for you.

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