In this episode of Mano Charchae, Dr. Vijay Kumar speaks about the treatment available to address Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). This is a mental health condition, so both medication and therapy are advised. Most patients do not accept medications that a psychiatrist prescribes because they fear adverse side effects. The truth is, OCD can be managed well by taking these medications but like any new medication, they may cause temporary responses like headache, nausea, and other minor side effects. Psychiatrists always first prescribe medication in minor dosage and gradually increase it as the days progress, depending on patient recovery. When it comes to therapy, cognitive therapy sessions are recommended and patients usually respond very well to them.
As part of cognitive therapy, the issue that stresses out the patient the most is first ascertained and depending on that priority, appropriate therapy measures are adopted. If a patient, for example, is used to washing their hands too much, suspecting that they have dust on them, then the therapist will try to make sure that they do not wash their hands even if there is indeed some dust. This process will gradually be tempered, but its repetition can help reduce OCD responses. Another therapy step includes tieing a rubber band around the hands of a patient and tightening it whenever a repetitive thought hits. People living with OCD will often worry about insects and will need help in combating that fear.
It needs to be understood that all OCD cases won’t be ‘curable’ and there is no set time limit for treatment – it may take 6 months, a year, or even more for the procedures to take effect. There is no real guarantee against relapses either.
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