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                                  OCD: Obsessions. Compulsions. Destroyed.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Many of us can relate to having perfectionistic tendencies or wanting to organize things in a certain way, but for people with obsessive compulsive disorder, these tendencies are much more severe and problematic. OCD can cause much distress for those who suffer from this illness and for their loved ones.

Obsessions and compulsions are the key features of OCD. Obsessions are a pattern of unreasonable thoughts and fears. These obsessions lead people to perform repetitive behaviors, known as compulsions. These compulsions serve as a way to ease the stress that stems from the obsessions, which can create a vicious cycle. Obsessions and compulsions often center around certain themes, such as fear of contamination or fear of death. These obsessions and compulsions can interfere with daily activities and cause significant stress and anxiety.

Did You Know?

  • OCD affects 1 in 40 adults and 1 in 100 children in the U.S
  • OCD usually begins in teenage or young adult years
  • OCD is one of the top 20 causes of illness-related disability worldwide for people between 15 and 44 years of age
  • OCD is equally common in men and women
  • OCD tends to run in families and may be genetic
  • Experiencing traumatic or stressful events may increase your risk for developing OCD

Common symptoms include:
Unwanted thoughts; being overly concerned about contamination or cleanliness; needing things orderly; demanding reassurances; checking doors repeatedly; silently repeating a prayer, word, or phrase; counting in certain patterns; or constant performing of seemingly senseless rituals

Recommended Resource:
Brain Lock: Free Yourself from Obsessive Compulsive Behavior by Jeffrey M. Schwartz. This book provides a practical guide for overcoming debilitating obsessions and compulsions using cognitive therapy and behavior modification.

Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts: A CBT-Based Guide to Getting Over Frightening, Obsessive, or Disturbing Thoughts by Sally M. Winston and Martin M. Seif. This book may be helpful for anyone suffering from OCD who wants to learn Cognitive Behavior Therapy principles that commonly offer relief from obsessions and compulsions.

How We Can Help:
If you or a loved one suffers from one or more of the symptoms listed above, counseling can help by using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to teach strategies to address intrusive thoughts, regulate distressing feelings, and control problematic behaviors. Counseling can help address thoughts that are creating stress and anxiety. A counselor can help you develop a behavioral plan to reduce compulsions and manage anxiety in a healthy way.

“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.” Colossians 3:15