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Piece of paper with the word OCD on it, to represent obsessive-compulsive disorderIf you’ve been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), it can be overwhelming as the anxiety and repetitive behaviors prevent a sense of freedom. The good news is that there is effective treatment available to help manage this condition, enabling those affected to live full and healthy lives.

Northeast Health Services offers tailored mental health treatment that is designed to meet each client’s individual needs. Our counselors and therapists are highly qualified, with deep expertise in treating obsessive-compulsive disorders through evidence-based practices such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), exposure and response prevention (ERP) and medication management.

If you or someone close to you is looking for an OCD treatment, our team of experts can help treat the condition. We provide a personalized approach that involves identifying triggers, establishing healthy coping mechanisms and understanding how to manage anxiety. Contact us today at 508.794.8711 to find out more about the services we offer in our state-of-the-art OCD treatment centers.

An Overview of OCD

Obsessive-compulsive disorder is an anxiety disorder characterized by intense and overwhelming reactions to seemingly innocuous situations. Usually, it consists of two parts: obsessions and compulsions. People who are suffering from OCD might feel perturbed with things that those unaffected typically don’t think twice about.

Constantly recurring and disruptive thoughts or feelings, known as obsessions, can plague someone’s mind. Imagine a person filled with fear of an intruder entering their home unexpectedly or fearful that harmful germs are on them at all times—those are just two examples of what an obsession may feel like.

People with OCD are constantly bombarded by obsessive thoughts that drive them to perform certain behaviors such as obsessively locking and unlocking the front door or spending hours on end cleaning. These actions, known as compulsions, can cause significant distress and disruption in daily life.

People with OCD might experience include the following common fixations:

  • Perfectionism – Concern about precision or exactness, evenness, losing or forgetting things
  • Contamination – From bodily fluids, germs, dirt, chemicals, etc.
  • Losing control – Acting on an impulse to harm themself or others, stealing things, blurting out obscenities or other comments
  • Harm – Intentionally doing something that hurts others or failing to be careful
  • Superstitions – Related to lucky or unlucky numbers, objects, dates, etc.
  • Religious – Fear of offending God or concern with ethics or morality
  • Unwanted sexual thoughts – Perverse, forbidden, or aggressive sexual thoughts that cause distress

Fixating on these thoughts and behaviors can have a major toll, causing significant distress that affects someone’s daily life. A person with OCD might find themselves struggling to complete regular tasks like making breakfast or going to the store because of their compulsive obsessions. Moreover, they may feel inhibited in social situations due to their uncontrollable compulsions.

To be diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder, a person must have persistent and recurrent intrusive thoughts or behaviors that they feel compelled to perform for at least one hour each day. Furthermore, feelings of distress are generally experienced due to their obsession which is often linked to anxiety.

What OCD Isn’t

For many years, the media has perpetuated numerous misconceptions about obsessive-compulsive disorder. Individuals who are meticulous or maintain a tidy space might often joke that it’s their OCD acting up again. It is typical to have habits and be particular with certain elements of life. However, this doesn’t mean one necessarily needs treatment for an anxiety disorder.

However, when the routines become so intense that they interfere with daily life, it is considered obsessive-compulsive disorder. A normal person may organize their desk for efficiency but a person facing OCD will expend an excessive amount of emotional energy organizing and reorganizing their desk to the extent that other tasks such as going to work or connecting with family members are neglected.

The Signs and Symptoms of OCD

Obsessive-compulsive disorder consists of two components: obsessions and compulsions. Although these can look different depending on the individual, they are both equally intrusive and cause symptoms such as:

  • Extreme concern with order or cleanliness
  • Disturbing intrusive thoughts or images
  • Nightmares
  • Panic attacks
  • Avoiding triggers
  • Guilt or stress over compulsive behaviors
  • Repeatedly checking things
  • Constantly seeking reassurance or approval
  • Hoarding

If you suspect that either yourself or someone close to you is exhibiting any of the telltale signs and symptoms associated with OCD, it may be time to seek specialized assistance from OCD treatment. 

What Can Cause OCD?

It’s generally understood that obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a complicated condition. An array of risk factors, ranging from genetics to biology, make certain individuals more prone to suffering from OCD than others. Studies have established the strongest contributing elements as being genetic and biological in nature.

Genetic Causes

Fascinating research exploring identical twins and the family members of individuals with OCD has unraveled that genetic factors are essential in determining whether an individual will develop obsessive-compulsive disorder. Although there isn’t one exact gene that can be attributed to causing this disorder, different alleles from multiple genes likely play a role in increasing someone’s risk for OCD.

Biological Causes

Our bodies rely upon numerous biochemicals to work properly, and new research has uncovered that the neurotransmitter serotonin may be connected with OCD. Not only is serotonin linked to depression and anxiety, but it could also affect an individual’s risk of developing OCD.

Environmental Causes

While a genetic predisposition does not guarantee that someone will develop OCD, environmental factors can also elevate their risk. Prenatal weight gain, labor complications, abuse, and trauma are just some of the contributing elements to increasing the probability of developing OCD.

What to Expect From OCD Therapy in MA

Developing an effective treatment plan for OCD necessitates working with a mental health professional who has expertise in this area. The suitable course of action may involve one or more of the following strategies:

  • Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy – TMS is an FDA-approved treatment for OCD and other mental health conditions that involves stimulating certain parts of the brain with magnetic pulses to promote healing.
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy – Talk therapy focuses on teaching clients strategies for altering their behavior.
  • Exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy – This therapy involves exposure to triggers in a controlled environment to alter a participant’s perception of the trigger.
  • Medication – Certain medications can help alleviate symptoms and address the biological roots of obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Taking the initial step to learning about available treatments for OCD is crucial in identifying a route towards recovery. If you or someone close to you are battling with this condition, don’t wait any longer. Reach out and seek assistance today.

Benefits of OCD Treatment

Our comprehensive OCD treatment is an essential step in the healing journey for those battling obsessive-compulsive disorder and offers invaluable support. Through our approach, individuals can benefit from:

  • Create healthier coping skills
  • Manage anxiety and distress levels
  • Gain control over unwanted intrusive thoughts and behaviors

With a properly crafted treatment plan, clients can learn to recognize triggers more accurately, have greater insight into their own behaviors and emotions, as well as create the skills necessary for facing potential issues in the future. Specialized OCD treatment will bring about an optimistic approach towards life while also allowing you to reconnect with society. Therefore, don’t delay getting yourself or someone important to you the help they deserve.

Contact Northeast Health Services for OCD Treatment in the Greater Boston Area and Beyond

At Northeast Health Services, we are dedicated to aiding our neighborhoods in accessing life-changing mental health care. Recognized as one of the premier mental health practices in Massachusetts, we offer an extensive range of services tailored for all individuals—from couples and young adults to children and teens—that guarantee meeting every person’s needs. Our comprehensive selection will ensure that you get precisely what your situation requires. 

If you think that you are experiencing an anxiety disorder like OCD, call us today at 508.794.8711 to learn what our compassionate care providers can do for you.