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Getting help of Obsessive compulsive disorder

Updated: Saturday, Jun 19,2010, 11:06:41 AM
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Getting help

compulsions do not give the person pleasure. Rather, the rituals are performed to obtain relief from the discomfort caused by the obsessions. Treatment for OCD usually involves a combination of behavior therapy and medications. behavior therapy helps people learn to change their thoughts and feelings by first changing their behavior. Therapy also tries to reduce the catastrophic thinking and exaggerated sense of responsibility many people with OCD tend to have. drugs recommended for OCD are those that act upon the imbalance of serotonin.

OCD can be difficult for both patients and families. many family members feel frustrated and confused by the symptoms and don't know how to help their loved one. If you're concerned about OCD either for yourself or for a loved one, a doctor can tell you more about diagnosing and treating this disorder.

Treatment options for OCD include psychotherapy and medications. In cognitive behavioral therapy, the therapist helps patients recognize and change the thought patterns that are associated with their OCD behaviors. A therapist may also work with the patient to help them gradually increase the amount of time they can go without a compulsive behavior. Therapy may also involve exposing the patient to gradually increased amounts of the stressful situations that trigger their OCD. Among medications, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are most commonly used to treat OCD. SSRIs work to increase the amount of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin, a chemical found in the brain, helps to relay messages from one area of the brain to another. SSRIs are also used to treat depressive illnesses. You should discuss potential side effects of any prescribed medication with your doctor.

Treatment can often involve a combination of both medications and psychotherapy. There is also an implanted brain device that has been approved for patients with severe OCD that has failed to respond to any other treatment.

Meanwhile, research continues into the causes, diagnosis, prevention and treatment of OCD and other anxiety disorders. Studies are examining genetic and environmental risks, with the ultimate goal being to be able to cure, and perhaps even to prevent, such disorders.

Using brain imaging technologies and neurochemical techniques, scientists are finding that a network of interacting structures is responsible for the emotions we associate with anxiety. For example, the amygdala, a structure located deep within the brain, is believed to serve as a communications hub between the parts of the brain that process incoming sensory signals and the parts that interpret them. It can signal that a threat is present, and trigger a fear response or anxiety. It appears that emotional memories stored in the central part of the amygdala may play a role in disorders involving very distinct fears, like phobias, while different parts may be involved in other forms of anxiety.

research indicates that other brain parts called the basal ganglia and striatum are involved in obsessive compulsive disorder. Research is also looking into the hippocampus, another brain structure that is responsible for processing threatening or traumatic stimuli. The hippocampus plays a key role in the brain by helping to encode information into memories. By learning more about brain circuitry involved in fear and anxiety, scientists may be able to devise new and more specific treatments for OCD and other anxiety disorders.

Meanwhile, the important thing for patients and families to remember is that there is help available. Again, if you suspect that OCD is a problem for yourself or a loved one, seek professional advice.

Tags: disorder Obsessive compulsive

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