OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)
OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)
OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) is a disorder in which obsessions or compulsions are observed, usually long-term and uncertain when it will end, sometimes with periodic exacerbations, and significantly affects the daily functions of the person. Obsessions are thoughts or impulses that are involuntary, that irritate the individual, cannot be fired by conscious effort, and are stubbornly repetitive. These are contrary to one's logic, views, beliefs, and understanding of morality and are unacceptable. At the same time, the person is aware that these are the products of his own mind.
Compulsion, on the other hand, is involuntary repetitive movements, often done to ward off obsessive thoughts. These begin to reduce the discomfort caused by the obsession, but this becomes uncontrollable, and this repetitive behavior itself begins to cause distress for the person. The following examples of obsession and compulsion can be given: Feeling the necessity of washing one's hand many times, thinking that his / her hand is dirty when touching something that he / she knows to be clean (obsession), washing his hand inevitably (compulsion); such as having to take the ablution over and over again due to the thoughts (obsession) of blasphemy during wudu or reciting a certain pray over and over again (compulsion).Even though the person forces himself not to think of his obsessions or make compulsive movements, unwanted thoughts continue to come and unwanted movements are repeated over and over. In common language, these are also known as "obsession". Obsessions and compulsions occur in cycles. When obsession arises, one interprets it as a threat, danger, or immorality. This interpretation results in a serious discomfort in the person. Compulsions of the person help to relieve this ailment. Efforts to avoid obsession (compulsions) cause an over-sensitivity to anything related to that obsession, which ultimately causes the obsession to appear more often and the whole cycle begins again.
Although not often enough to receive a true diagnosis, many people suffer from obsessions and compulsions, but obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) distresses 1-2% of the society. OCD has no obvious cause. An OCD gene is unknown. OCD is not associated with any abnormality in the formation of the brain, and distinct past experiences or personality traits do not provide information about who will have this disorder. OCD usually starts at a young age. In the vast majority, the onset is between the ages of 18-25. It can be seen even in young childhood. It can start at an earlier age in men than in women, but consulting a physician can usually occur 10-15 years after symptoms appear. There are also species that start late in the middle age or even in the old age, in severe living conditions.
Approximately 80% of people with OCD cannot get better without getting the necessary help, that is, the symptoms of OCD rarely disappear on their own. Treatment approaches in obsessive-compulsive disorder are medication and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). It is known that a significant number of patients with OCD benefit from drug therapy at a level that can be considered clinically significant. The well-being of the person continues as long as drugs are used. In addition, one of the cornerstones in the treatment of the disease is cognitive behavioral psychotherapy. Studies have shown that CBT is at least as effective as drugs, perhaps more, in the treatment of OCD.In cognitive behavioral psychotherapy, a patient-specific treatment plan is developed that explains how the symptoms of OCD develop and continue. In this plan, the factors that predispose the patient to the symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder, the factors that are thought to initiate and maintain the disease, the patient's basic beliefs, obsessions and the emotions they cause, and the methods to cope with them. The patient is helped to develop thoughts that provide options for the beliefs that underlie the behaviors that lead to the continuation of their attachments. What is expected from the patient is to endure anxiety and to develop new behavioral models. In the meantime, the patient is taught the ways of relaxation to soothe anxiety. Patients are also taught to direct themselves to other subjects, other thoughts, and other activities. There are enormous benefits in directing patients with OCD to pursuing activities. An occupation that the patient enjoys reduces obsessions and compulsions.
Spec. Clinical Psychologist / Psychotherapist Ece Başak Ünal