Understanding Obsessive Compulsive disorder
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a disorder of the mind that may occur at any point in a person’s life. It usually crops up during adolescence but incidents of the disorder in childhood have also been noted. There are two main aspects to this disorder, namely, obsessions and compulsions, as suggested by its name.
Obsessions: these are recurring thoughts, pictures/images and implications that the affected looks as inapt and that he must get rid of, thus causing him stress and anxiety. Some obsessions are doubts about contamination like unclean hands, need for rigid order of things, repeatedly being unsure such as whether the door is locked and hostile impulses.
Compulsions: these are repetitive actions, deeds or emotional acts that are done in response to an obsession. The person believes that he must constantly try to react to the obsessions resulting in repeated compulsions. Some compulsions could be washing hand, praying on and on, rechecking and ordering items several times and repeating the same action over and over again. Treating OCD
The treatment of OCD is a combination of medication and professional therapy. For this disorder, treatment should be sought as early as possible in order to increase the efficacy and narrow down the time period. Medication adds strength to the patient when taken at the right time and the right dosage. It is very important to take medicines rigorously and continuously as directed by the physician. Medication:
The medication is prescribed based on the severity of the disease. For mild cases professional counseling may be sufficient. This may be supplemented with antidepressant drugs such as Fluoxetine (Prozac), fluvoxamine (Luvox), or sertraline (Zoloft) for moderate cases. However, for sever cases with extreme symptoms medicines are prescribed prior to counseling.
It is vital for the patient to be open with his physician and inform him about any side effects experienced during treatment. It is also important to inform him about any other conditions one might have such as Liver problems that may affect the functioning of the drug, and other drugs that are being taken at that time. The prescribed drugs, in spite of causing certain side effects are very effective in treating the disorder. One must attempt to learn as much as possible about the medicines since some of them might react adversely with other medications, alcohol and particular foods. Treatment
Treatment consists of keeping a track of the dosage and the efficacy on the drug in treating the disorder. Research is now venturing into the use of other medication using dopamine antagonists in combination with anti-depressants, which are the most commonly used medications for OCD.
Some recent breakthroughs in the treatment of OCD are Deep Brain Simulation and Gamma Knife Capsulotomy. Deep brain stimulation utilizes surgically implanted electrodes in the brain and magnetically stimulates parts of the brain. The latter makes use of a special instrument called a gamma knife to make lesions in those areas of the brain that involve OCD symptoms.
Treatments for all disorders are vitally affected by identifying the problem at an early stage. This combined with the right medication can work wonders in the treatment of a disorder.