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Treatment Options For Obsession

Posted by on Saturday, October 3, 2009, 16:00
This news item was posted in Obsession category and has 0 Comments so far.

Medication and psychotherapy are both very effective treatments for Obsession. It is of special interest that the medications Luvox, Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Anafranil that are most effective for OCD all have strong effects on the seretonin neurotransmitter system in the brain.

In all of psychiatry, Obsession Compulsive Disorder has the most specific relationship to a single neurotransmitter system. This suggest that we may soon find out what are the specific brain mechanism causing OCD which in turn may lead to even more effective treatments.

The most effective form of psychotherapy for Obsession is exposure and response prevention. For example, someone who is afraid of contamination is asked to play with dirt from a flower pot and is not permitted to wash his hands for an hour afterward.

At first, exposures causes you considerable anxiety and systematic exposure to anxiety, you gradually feel less need to perform the compulsion and develop a greater sense of self control. The major work of  this treatments occurs not in the therapy session itself but in between the sessions with a full court press of homework assignments. Many individuals benefit most from a combined treatment including both psychotherapy and medication.

For younger patients and for the milder forms of OCD, psychotherapy is the first treatment used, with medications added after a month or so if there has been no response or if the person has had trouble performing the exposure exercises without it. For the more severe forms of OCD, particularly in older adolescents and adults, medication and psychotherapy in combination in combination are more likely to produce a satisfactory response.

OCD is tough on family members. It is painful to watch a loved one waste his or her life uncontrollably performing useless rituals. Moreover, that patient may force family members to participate in the rituals helping to check that doors are locked and that there is no blood in the driveway.

The treatment will often include the entire family in an effort to gradually extricate everyone from the rituals. There is also a very effective organization, the Obsessive Compulsive Foundation, that provides support both for patients and their families.

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