OCD

Elmbrook Psychiatry offers expertise in treating OCD with prescription medication and cognitive behavioral therapy or exposure and response prevention therapy.

What Are the Symptoms of OCD?

There are many symptoms of OCD, and they can vary from person to person. Some common symptoms include:

 

• Having persistent, intrusive, and unwanted thoughts (obsessions) that cause anxiety or distress

• Engaging in repetitive behaviors (compulsions) that you feel driven to do in an effort to relieve the obsessions and anxiety

• Avoiding certain situations or objects that trigger your obsessions

• Having a rigid routine that you feel you must follow rigidly

• Excessive hand-washing, cleaning or checking things

• Difficulty discarding or hoarding objects

• Repeating actions a certain number of times or until it feels "just right."

• Mental compulsions such as counting, praying, or repeating words silently

What Causes OCD?

There is no single known cause of OCD, but a combination of genetic and environmental factors are thought to play a role. OCD runs in families, so there is likely a genetic component. But not everyone with a family member with OCD will develop the disorder, so other factors must also be involved.

 

It's believed that serotonin, a brain chemical (neurotransmitter), plays a part in OCD. Serotonin is involved in mood, anxiety, and sleep. A disruption in the way serotonin is used by the brain has been linked to OCD and other mental health disorders.

 

Environmental factors may also contribute to the development of OCD. Stressful life events, such as the death of a loved one or divorce, can trigger OCD symptoms.

How is OCD treated?

There is no single known cause of OCD, but a combination of genetic and environmental factors are thought to play a role. OCD runs in families, so there is likely a genetic component. But not everyone with a family member with OCD will develop the disorder, so other factors must also be involved.

 

It's believed that serotonin, a brain chemical (neurotransmitter), plays a part in OCD. Serotonin is involved in mood, anxiety, and sleep. A disruption in the way serotonin is used by the brain has been linked to OCD and other mental health disorders.

 

Environmental factors may also contribute to the development of OCD. Stressful life events, such as the death of a loved one or divorce, can trigger OCD symptoms.