No one can dispute the power of thoughts. In fact, thoughts can break or make a person’s character and life. Unfortunately, distressing ideas and image haunt some people’s mind, so much so that they find it difficult to shake them off. Such a condition is most common among patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), OCD is a chronic mental disorder in which a person has uncontrollable, reoccurring thoughts (obsessions) and behaviors (compulsions). The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), reports that 2.2 million people aged 18 and above in the United States are living with symptoms of the disorder during any given year.
People suffering from OCD live with uncontrollable and unwanted thoughts manifested as recurring behaviors or actions that they feel impelled to perform. Though affected people often understand that the compulsive nature of their thoughts is temporary and irrational, they find it difficult to resist and break free from them.
Experts suggest that obsessions are accompanied by grievously intense and uncomfortable emotions, including fear, loathing, ambiguity or feelings that something needs to be done in some particular manner only. For those living with OCD, obsessions are mostly prolonged, time-consuming and interfere with the way they go about their daily activities.
Taking stock of damaging thoughts
The kind of intrusive thoughts (or images) that haunt people with OCD may include making mistakes, harming loved ones, fear of contamination or disease, fixation over religious rituals, fear of unwarranted impulses or desires. Too much focus on such thoughts can exacerbate the already existing poor state of mind. It is necessary that one sits back and pays particular attention to unjustified thoughts that keep cropping into one’s mind. Individuals with OCD need to do the following to understand the roots of their disorder:
- Knowing emotional triggers: There are certain events or stimuli that may set off a panic reaction in some people. These could be as simple as being in contact with some contaminated thing, leaving home while going to work or driving at night.
- Suppressing negative thoughts: Not all thoughts may be positive. There may be some distressing thoughts or negative impulses that keep haunting people again and again. It is necessary to get rid of negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones.
Negative thinking has its roots in the fear of the unknown. Prolonged negative thinking may result in undue stress that can have a calamitous effect on the body and mind. Depression is the most common consequence of harboring negative thoughts or worsening feelings of stress.
Road to recovery
Since OCD is not a physiological disorder, physicians cannot diagnose it using laboratory tests. Mental health professionals make use of survey questionnaires and interview their patients to determine if the symptoms exhibited by their patients correspond to signs of OCD.
Experts at Sovereign Health help stressed patients get rid of the recurring strain and trauma they go through, while also enabling them to understand the root causes of their disorders. Recurring stress can result in grievous mental health issues, including suicidal ideation. Clinicians at our treatment centers for OCD in California recommend a combination of effective remedial therapies, along with medicines, during the treatment process. To know more about our OCD treatment centers in California, you may call our 24/7 helpline number 866-973-7164 or chat online with our representatives.