Obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors that interfere with living a healthy life are symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder. For example, an irrational fear of germs may cause someone to avoid touching doorknobs, or social interactions. Or, an excessive need for order results in continuous cleaning and rearranging. For some, OCD can even cause brief repetitive tics such as blinking, grunting, sniffling, or jerking their head.
While it is common to experience both the thoughts and behavior symptoms of OCD together, they can be experienced separately. Here are some of the most common symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder:
Symptoms Of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
• Repeating a task several times unnecessarily
• Constantly seeking reassurance from others
• Repeatedly checking locks on doors
• Repeatedly washing hands
• Repeatedly saying a phrase or word
• Hoarding items of no value
• Obsessive thoughts of harming yourself or others
• Persistent unwanted (negative) thoughts or images
• Irrational fear of shaking hands
• Irrational fear of dirt or contamination
• Excessive need for order and cleanliness
• Inability to tolerate uncertainty
• Elevated stress if things are not arranged/organized a certain way
Treatments for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive behavior therapy is a type of psychotherapy focused on developing personalized coping strategies, improving emotional regulation, and identifying and changing problematic behaviors. This talk therapy has proven to be effective for treating OCD, severe mental illness, anxiety and eating disorders, and substance abuse. Learn how cognitive behavior therapy works.
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)
TMS shows great potential for a wide variety of diseases in neurology and mental health. It is a painless, non-invasive procedure that delivers magnetic pulses to parts of the brain that regular mood and depression. Transcranial magnetic stimulation is being studied by the leading psychiatry and behavioral sciences institutions such as John Hopkins University.
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)
Electroconvulsive therapy is tried when severe depression and/or bipolar disorder is unresponsive to other treatments. ECT uses brief electric stimulation to the brain to induce small seizures. This acts as a catalyst for the brain to release chemicals that are helpful to improving mood and mental illness. The treatment is administered by a nurse, psychiatrist, and anesthesiologist.
A proper diagnosis is the first step to restoring the quality of life you deserve. If you or someone you love exhibits signs of obsessive-compulsive disorder that are negatively impacting their happiness and/or relationships, don’t wait another day. Schedule time with a licensed professional today.