obsessive compulsive disorder
Obsessions are persistent unwanted urges, thoughts or images that feel intrusive to the person, and cause anxiety. Compulsions are the actions taken to relieve this anxiety. Some of the more common obsessions involve fear of contamination, doubting one’s actions, or sexual or aggressive thoughts. Some of the common compulsions sufferers experience include repetitive or excessive washing, checking, reassurance seeking, ordering things symmetrically or precisely, and hoarding. The exact nature or obsessions and compulsions can be varied and sometimes, very unusual.
HOW A PSYCHOLOGIST CAN HELP
The clinical psychologists and psychiatrists at Fulham Consulting can guide you through CBT or consider medication options, so that you have the necessary tools to keep symptoms manageable and help you recover from this debilitating disorder.
Cognitive therapy involves challenging and confronting the distorted thinking that is leading the sufferer to become overly anxious about intrusive thoughts, images and impulses. Some examples might be the beliefs that “if I have a horrible thought about harming someone, it means that I am a person capable of doing that”, or “I can’t relax until I am 100% certain that everything will be ok”.
Behaviour therapy involves exposure to the normal situations in life that trigger the obsession (eg. touching an empty rubbish bin lid), and then voluntarily preventing oneself from performing the compulsive ritual to relieve the anxiety (eg. washing one’s hands to remove contamination). Through a natural process, called habituation, the person will then gradually experience less and less anxiety in response to triggers. This process is done slowly and only when the person is ready to take the next step.
For more contact us.