Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) can be a really debilitating mental disorder, leading to irrational behaviours and decision making. If you feel that you may be in the clutches of OCD then there are various things you can do to tackle it and start resuming control over your life. It may , however, be unclear to you what the difference between OCD and quirky behaviour is.
After all, we all have our own little idiosyncrasies don’t we. Of course, this is true, but there are some key differences.
It would be fair to say that most individuals, at some stage in their lives, have come into contact with the phenomenon of obsessional or intrusive thinking and/or succumbed to the seemingly nonsensical need to perform an odd, and often unrelated, behaviour pattern in order to avert a real or imagined danger (e.g. touching a certain item of furniture before going to bed in order to ‘ward off’ a nightmare, or checking several times that the door and windows are locked before leaving the house when going on holiday).
However, the key difference which separate these little ‘quirks’ from the disorder is when the distressing and unwanted experience of obsessions and/or compulsions impacts, to a significant level, upon a person’s everyday living- psychologists consider this to be the principal factor when it comes to making a clinical diagnosis of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.
To take control over your thoughts is to take control over your behaviour. When we give in to OCD we are giving up control of who we are as people. But what exactly do we mean by a compulsion, and how does it differ to ordinary behaviours?
A compulsion is defined as a repetitive behaviour or mental act that a person feels compelled to perform. Unlike some other types of compulsive behaviour, such as an addiction to drugs or gambling, a person with OCD gets no pleasure from their compulsive behaviour.
They feel that they need to carry out their compulsion to prevent their obsession becoming true. For example, a person who is obsessed with the fear that they will catch a serious disease may feel compelled to have a shower every time they use a public toilet.
OCD is not just limited to behaviour though. Intrusive thoughts, or obsessions as psychologists call them, affect everyone. But some people can't get rid of them as easily as the rest of us.
People who suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) are plagued by intrusive thoughts that they can't banish from their mind, no matter how hard they try. Sufferers try to fight these thoughts with mental or physical rituals, the compulsions, which involve repeatedly performing actions such as washing, cleaning, checking, counting, hoarding or partaking in endless rumination.
Avoidance of feared situations is also common; however, this often results in further worrying and preoccupation with the obsessional thoughts.
Most sufferers know that their thoughts and behaviour are irrational and senseless, but feel incapable of stopping them. This has a significant impact on their confidence and self-esteem and as a result, their careers, relationships and lifestyles.
For people with OCD, attempting to resist the temptation can result in higher levels of tension and anxiety. Helping someone with OCD involves helping them to master the facets of the mind. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy has proven to be a successful method. Another is found in hypnotherapy.
Hypnosis can help with your OCD issues. A hypnotherapy approach can view the basis of OCDs as their splitting off of a certain point emotional part of the individual.
This damaged, split off emotional content is just out of reach of conscious thought, but is easily recognised in a dream, or in an altered state of consciousness induced by hypnosis. OCD disorders can be treated successfully with hypnosis in the same way that addictions can be too.
Of course, you should only consider hypnosis once you have discussed it with a doctor or therapist.
However, there are plenty of books, guides and information over the internet that you can use to help in your own treatment. So long as you have agreed details with a professional first, there is nothing wrong with taking a healthy active interest in your own treatment.
Please remember that only assistance from a professional counts as qualified support. If you are suffering from an OCD it is recommended that you seek professional help with it.