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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

  1. Beware of Enabling the Tyranny of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

    Beware of Enabling the Tyranny of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

    My wife suffers from panic attacks, anxiety, depression, OCD and medical phobias. These issues have been going on for over a decade with no resolution in sight. The problems seemed to start just after a death in the family, and the anxiety just escalated from there until it turned into debilitating OCD, depression etc.

    The largest obstacle to overcome seems to be the medical phobia. Because of this phobia, I can't get her to seek treatment, so one thing just escalates into another. At this point she barely speaks to people, doesn't watch television or read etc. This is because any word she associates with medicine sends her into an uncontrollable panic. The words don't have to be medical - she just has to be able to draw some sort of correlation – for instance, hospitality, sounds like hospital.

    I've been researching healing with sound, music therapy and guided imagery. The one thing she will do is listen to music without words (since there aren't words to upset her).

    Can you suggest anything that might help such an extreme case? She refuses treatment (because of her phobias) so I basically need something that will relax her and calm the fears without her thinking of it as treatment.

    Basically, I need a stepping stone - something to get us past the first step so that maybe she'll eventually be more open to treatment, if only we can calm the medical phobia.

    Do you have any CD's that might be appropriate? Or anything else? Thanks so much!

    Harried Harry

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  2. His Wife Has Had OCD for 60 Years….

    His Wife Has Had OCD for 60 Years….

    Dear Belleruth,

    My wife has had OCD (Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder) since at least 1963, along with deep depression. Though she will be in a program at UCLA and is under doctor's care, and I don't expect immediate "cures," is there anything else that might be helpful for her? And, honestly, I'm not all that hopeful about holistic medicine, but I feel we have to try all avenues.

    Thank you.
    Jose M.

    Dear Jose,

    I'm guessing that some segments of the program your wife will be participating in at UCLA will provide selected mind-body training in relaxation, along with medication (probably from the class of drugs called SSRI's, such as Zoloft, Prozac, etc), cognitive-behavioral techniques, psycho-education and possibly group support – all of which can be extremely helpful over time.

    You are wise to gear yourself not to expect a "silver bullet" that yields an instant cure – lasting positive changes tend to be incremental over time, not quick fixes. But if she sticks with the program, I think it's fair to say you both will see results.

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  3. Procrastinating on the De-Cluttering


    Audio Sample

    Question:

    Belleruth,

    You have NO IDEA how timely this post (The Joy of Tossing Clutter) is for me!!  I just looked at the HJ site today hoping to find something to help w/ Procrastination because I look around my house...thinking I NEED to clean this junk and paper clutter out!!
       
    Anything already in the HJ library that might help?
     
    Thanks so much for your work!

    Dana

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  4. How Can She Control Her Own Overly Aggressive Social Behavior?

    Question:

    Dear BR,

    I feel the opposite of the person who avoids rejection by avoiding people. I think I'm TOO outgoing and turn off people by being too in the middle of everything. How can I balance my social need with more subtle behavior? I’m in my forties.

    Suzannah

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  5. A Winning Recipe for Help with Severe OCD

    Question:

    Dear Belleruth,

    First off, I'd like to offer my thanks to you for helping people all over the country with their emotional/mental troubles and needs. Unfortunately, I suffer from germaphobia accompanied by fear of illness. It’s so bad that I wash my hands constantly, avoid touching things when I’m out in public, and carry sanitizer around in my pocket.  Plus, I don't go out to restaurants anymore, because I fear the people who made the food aren't careful with hygiene and contaminate my food with some kind of bacteria.

    This all came about this past April, when I was very ill with a really bad stomach virus. It ended up being a very traumatic event for me, to say in the least... and I haven't been able to move on. I've tried everything I could afford -therapy, holistic medicine, acupuncture, meditation, etc.  I'm tired of living with this constant fear - what do you recommend for someone with my case? Thank you very much. Feel free to post this.

    Gary

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  6. Internet-Based CBT Shows Great Promise for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

    Researchers from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden  investigated the efficacy of internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (ICBT) with therapist support for obsessive compulsive disorder. CBT is widely regarded as an effective treatment for OCD, but access to CBT therapists is limited – thus the internet-based program as an intermediate solution.
     
    This pilot was an open trial where 23 patients received a 15-week ICBT program with therapist support, consisting of psycho-education, cognitive restructuring and exposure with response prevention.

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  7. Someone with O.C.D. Gives Shoutout for Guided Imagery

    Bellruth [sic] & Health Journeys,

    I have been listening to your DVD [Ed. Note: she means CD] on OCD [Obsessive Compulsive Disorder] and I can finally feel relief. I’m not sure how it works but I know it does like nothing has before.

    I do take Zoloft [Ed. Note: an SSRI or sustained serotonin reuptake inhibitor for depression] and Lorazepam [Ed Note: brand name is Ativan, a sedating, muscle- relaxing, anti-anxiety agent], but not till I started listening to your OCD dvd [sic] did my mind and outlook and thinking change. It is so nice. I can't thank you enough.

    Vanessa

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  8. A 61 Year Old Woman Suffers from Compulsive Hoarding, Cluttering Her House

    Dear Belleruth,

    What do you suggest for a 61 year old woman who can''t part with things - papers, my children''s hand-made baby clothes, my clothes that I think I may use one day, and other stuff. Scrapbooks and genealogy info is close to sacred to me, but it’s the other stuff that clutters my house because I can''t part with anything. I listen to your tapes nightly while in the tub and love them.

    Thank you,
    Susan
     

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  9. Procrastinating on the De-Cluttering…

    Question:

    You have NO IDEA how timely this post (The Joy of Tossing Clutter) is for me!!  I just looked at the HJ site today hoping to find something to help w/ Procrastination because I look around my house...thinking I NEED to clean this junk and paper clutter out!!   

    Anything already in the HJ library that might help?  

    Thanks so much for your work, you've blessed my life over and over!

    Dana

    Read more »
  10. Trying to Accommodate the Tyranny of Phobia, Panic & OCD

    My wife suffers from panic attacks, anxiety, depression, OCD and medical phobias. These issues have been going on for over a decade with no resolution in sight. The problems seemed to start just after a death in the family, and the anxiety just escalated from there until it turned into debilitating OCD, depression etc.

    The largest obstacle to overcome seems to be the medical phobia. Because of this phobia I can't get her to seek treatment, so one thing just escalates into another. At this point she barely speaks to people, doesn't watch television or read etc. This is because any word she associates with medicine sends her into an uncontrollable panic. The words don't have to be medical - she just has to be able to draw some sort of correlation – for instance, hospitality, sounds like hospital.

    Read more »
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