Do you feel as if
there is a battle
going on inside of
you and you have
no control...?

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

What is OCD?

It is quite normal to occasionally double-check that you’ve locked the door, or checked the iron. But if you suffer from OCD the thoughts (obsessions), which are accompanied by uncomfortable feelings (anxiety), lead to behaviours / actions (compulsions) which become excessive and interfere with normal functioning. These intrusive thoughts are not related to trauma (which rules out PTSD) and the rationale is irrational.

OCD is the least common of all the anxiety disorders, so it’s a little hard to get data on this condition. But the figures seem to show that OCD effects around 1.5% of the population in any 12-month period, so it’s really quite uncommon. Common obsessions are around germs, superstitions, and harming self or others, while common compulsions are cleaning and washing, rituals and hording.

People who suffer from OCD say it’s a bit like making a deal with the devil. That is might start acting on their compulsion only occasionally (e.g. washing their hands or checking) but pretty soon the devil wants more and they find they are spending hours performing the behaviour. Only now, the behaviour doesn’t give them the same level of relief that it used to. Eventually, they say, they are unable to resist the obsessions and the compulsions and are in a constant state of anxiety if they try to. A bit like being damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.

What is the treatment for OCD?

The two main treatments for OCD are:

1. Antidepressant Medications: prescribed by a psychiatrist

2. Treatment by Therapy: usually Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to assist in changing the thoughts and behaviours. Typically this involves Exposure and Ritual Prevention (EX/RP) with the assistance of a Clinical Psychologist. This type of therapy has been shown to be highly effective for OCD.

Can Hypnotherapy Treat OCD? 

The simple answer is yes.  OCD is an anxiety disorder and hypnotherapy can effectively treat anxiety disorders. However, the longer answer is that people who have OCD usually have other disorders as well. The priorities of treatment would depend on the personal distress experienced by the client. It may be more important to build life skills or deal with depression first. So you will need to speak to a GP, a psychologist, or a hypnotherapist to determine the correct treatment approach for you.  

If you have tried all of the above or would like to try the above in conjunction with your psychological treatment, then I would be happy to have a chat to see if I can assist. Wouldn’t it be nice if that obsession could just begin to fade away? 

If you have any questions about this, either send me an email, or give me a call. 

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