What is OCD?
Do you have bothersome thoughts that never seem to go away? Do you ever get scared of a thought that you cannot get out of your head? Do you experience anxiety or worry as a result of certain thoughts? Do you ever feel the urge to complete a behavior over and over never getting it quite right? Do you repeat behaviors such as hand washing, turning the light switch on and off, checking whether you locked the door or turned off the oven? Are you superstitious to the point that you avoid doing certain thing because you are afraid of something terrible happening? Do you constantly worry about potentially committing or having committed a horrible crime like molesting a child or hitting a person with your car?
These are very common symptoms of an anxiety disorder called Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Some people only experience distressing thoughts, others perform compulsive behaviors as well. In all cases, severe anxiety is present and the more you try to not think about the distressing thought, the more it haunts you. Performing compulsive behaviors is only helpful in alleviating the anxiety in the short term. Sometimes the discomfort is so great that only drugs or alcohol can help someone experience a break from the constant fear and worry. While OCD is an incredibly difficult disorder to experience, the good news is we can help. Our staff at New York Behavioral Health uses evidence-based practices and can help you improve your symptoms very soon.
How Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) Can Help with OCD
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has been proven effective in the treatment of OCD. Warm, caring, professionals can offer CBT therapy in a comfortable setting at New York Behavioral Health, which is conveniently located on Madison Avenue at 42nd Street. Our compassionate staff have been extensively trained in scientifically supported techniques to efficiently reduce your suffering. We also work with experienced and knowledgeable psychiatrists if we determine that medication could be helpful. We know it is not easy to get started, but we are here to help you get on the path to a better life.
For information about CBT therapy, please email or call New York Behavioral Health, and a staff member will be there to answer your questions. Your privacy and comfort are a priority, and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have about your problems and their treatment.
If you are interested in more technical details about OCD, please continue to read below, but at any point feel free to call us if we can be of help.
OCD is a type of anxiety disorder, in which obsessions and compulsions cause significant emotional pain and/or impair an individual’s ability to function in different areas of his or her life. Typical symptoms involve intense obsessional thoughts, compulsive behaviors including washing, cleaning, counting, arranging, avoidance, mental rituals, or other idiosyncratic behaviors. Themes include contamination, religious domains, fear of harming self or others, violence, etc. Panic, general anxiety, depressive symptoms, and guilt often accompany OCD symptoms.
Components of OCD
OCD can be broken into different domains. Cognitive components involve the obsessions themselves, but more critical in terms of pathology, are beliefs that obsessions are dangerous, intolerable, and must be neutralized or repressed. Other typical cognitive components include thoughts like, “Will something terrible happen if I don’t counteract this thought ?” “I must be crazy to think like this!” Physical symptoms are similar to other anxiety disorders and can include any sensations that are related to sympathetic nervous system activation, e.g., nausea, increased pulse, perspiration, etc. Strong urges (experienced as compulsions) to “undo” an obsession exist. Delays or resistance in responding to a compulsion will temporarily increase anxiety symptoms.