"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Medications and treatment options for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

OCD doesn't go away by itself and there is no such thing as a cure. You can't ignore it or think your way out of the repetitive thoughts and behaviors that run your life. What you'll be able to control is your decision to hunt treatment.

The first step is to see your doctor. An examination will show whether your symptoms are attributable to a physical problem. If this isn't the case, your doctor may recommend a mental health specialist, similar to: For example, a psychologist, therapist or social employee who can create a plan for you. If you're considering medication, you could even be referred to a psychiatrist.

For many individuals, the mixture of talk therapy and medicine works best.

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). OCD has a cycle: obsessions, fears, compulsions, and relief. CBT, a type of psychotherapy, gives you tools to think, act, and reply to your unhealthy thoughts and habits. The goal is to exchange negative thoughts with productive ones.

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). This is a special type of cognitive behavioral therapy. As the name suggests, you're regularly exposed to the things that trigger your fear. You will learn latest ways to answer them as a substitute of settling into your repetitive rituals. ERP is a process that you could do individually along with your psychologist or in group therapy, either alone or along with your local family.

Medication. Antidepressants are sometimes the primary medications prescribed for OCD. This doesn't necessarily mean you're depressed, it's just that antidepressants also treat OCD. Depending in your age, health, and symptoms, your doctor may ask you to try clomipramine (Anafranil), fluoxetine (Prozac), fluvoxamine (Luvox), paroxetine (Paxil), sertraline (Zoloft), or one other antidepressant.

Buspirone (BuSpar) is an anti-anxiety medication sometimes used to treat chronic anxiety and is useful for each panic and obsessive-compulsive disorder. You might want to take it for just a few weeks before you notice complete symptom relief.

Some anticonvulsant medicines (e.g. gabapentin). [Neurontin] or pregabalin [Lyrica]), some blood pressure medications (similar to propranolol) and a few atypical antipsychotics (similar to aripiprazole or quetiapine or Seroquel) are also occasionally used off label to treat anxiety symptoms or disorders.

It can take several months for compulsive medication to begin working. They also can cause uncomfortable side effects similar to dry mouth, nausea, and suicidal thoughts. Call your doctor or 911 immediately when you are enthusiastic about taking your individual life.

Take your medications often and on a schedule. If you don't just like the uncomfortable side effects or feel higher and wish to stop taking your medicine, ask your doctor tips on how to safely taper off your medication. If you miss just a few doses or stop taking cold turkey, you could experience uncomfortable side effects or a relapse.

Other treatments. Sometimes OCD doesn't respond well to medication or therapy. Experimental treatments for severe cases of OCD include:

  • Clinical trials. You could take part in research studies to check unproven therapies.
  • Deep brain stimulation, through which electrodes are surgically implanted into your brain
  • Electroshock therapy. Electrodes attached to your head provide you with electric shocks to trigger seizures, which cause your brain to release hormones similar to serotonin.

Your treatment goals for OCD are to retrain your brain and control your symptoms with the smallest amount of medication possible. Physically prepare yourself for achievement by maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, and getting enough sleep. Emotional support can also be necessary: Surround yourself with encouraging members of the family, friends, and other people who understand OCD.