Have We Found A Cure for OCD?
Everyone who has an illness longs for a cure. Many people would welcome a cure for OCD. OCD treatment methods can provide some relief. Likewise, OCD medications help a bit. But can medical science give us a real cure for OCD? Or does such a thing remain a pipe dream?
In this article, Recovery In Tune seeks answers to these questions:
- What is OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder)?
- What is life like for someone with OCD?
- What treatment methods exist for OCD?
- What about medications for OCD?
- Where can I get more information about a possible cure for OCD?
What is OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder)?
OCD stands for obsessive-compulsive disorder. Someone with OCD has thoughts and urges that seem to happen automatically. This makes up the “obsessive” element of the disorder. Further, the same person feels the need to do things repetitively. We refer to these actions as “compulsions.”
You may hear someone express something like, “I’m really OCD about ________.” Popular culture appears to have associated the disorder with anyone who likes things a certain way. But for those with OCD, the problems run much deeper. Like any mental illness, OCD can substantially interfere with someone’s life.
What Is Life Like For Someone With OCD?
Someone with OCD suffers from automatic, or intrusive, thoughts. Thoughts like these can manifest in anyone. But they can become especially cumbersome for a person with OCD. These thoughts appear without warning. They can disturb a person immensely. To combat these thoughts, the sufferer acts. These actions, at least in the mind of the sufferer, help keep the automatic thoughts at bay.
The sufferer believes that they must perform a particular action. It might involve repetitive cleaning or disinfecting. Or, the sufferer might have to circle their home three times before pulling into the driveway. To them, the world seems out of balance if they do not act our their compulsion. Life feels chaotic, and they have no grounding.
What Treatment Methods Exist For OCD?
Human problems rarely have just one cause. Consequently, one ought to come up with more than one solution to those problems. A quality treatment program for OCD must do more than conceal symptoms. As best it can, a treatment program must give someone their life back. It must help a client extend themselves beyond a disorder.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
CBT helps a client navigate through OCD. Remember those automatic thoughts? CBT trains our minds to engage with those kinds of thoughts. It teaches us to critique our thoughts. We ask ourselves questions about the thoughts to try and learn more about them. This helps us to break cycles of automatic thought. Consequently, we can begin to create more productive thought cycles.
Exposure And Response Prevention (EX/RP)
Exposure and response prevention therapy (EX/RP) takes a client into uncomfortable, bur controlled, situations. EX/RP might involve either imaginal exposure or in vivo exposure. In imaginal exposure, the client conjures up mental pictures of unpleasant sensations. In vivo exposure helps the client confront disturbing stimuli in real life.
Consider a client with a fear of leaving home. Prior to leaving, they must lock and unlock each door twenty times. Imaginal exposure would have the client think about leaving their house. In this mental scenario, the client would have only locked the doors once. Then, the client imagines how not engaging with their compulsion makes them feel. Over time, the client can develop resistance to their obsessions and compulsions.
In Vivo Exposure
In vivo exposure would have this client leave their home after locking each door only once. That done, they could immerse themselves in this fearful situation. When repeated, the client acquires the ability to remain in this circumstance with less fear.
What About Medications For OCD?
Medications constitute a key component of quality OCD treatment program. Changing our thinking via therapy aids our development. But we must not neglect medications. Several medications have become available to help those afflicted with OCD. We classify most of these medications as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
Some common OCD medications include:
- Fluoxetine (Prozac)
- Citalopram (Celexa, Cipramil)
- Paroxetine (Paxil, Pevexa)
Where Can I Get More Information About A Possible Cure For OCD?
At present, science has not provided a cure for OCD. No medication, no therapy, no process can make OCD go away forever. Nevertheless, recovery remains possible. With the proper tools at one’s disposal, one can lead a meaningful, fulfilling life. OCD does not prevent one from feeling joy. It may feel like an impassible threshold. Bur Recovery In Tune knows that people get better. People with OCD can unlearn old habits. They can change counterproductive patterns of thinking. They do not have to yield to their compulsions. They can experience genuine freedom.
If you or someone you love struggles with OCD, don’t wait any longer. Get help now. Contact Recovery In Tune today.