Get FREE Screening for OCD and Other Facts

Posted by Phil Cardenas on Jul 02, 2013

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) has been observed for over a thousand years, and for most of that time it was misunderstood, misdiagnosed and mistreated. It’s only in the past few decades that OCD has been properly classified as a treatable medical disorder and extensive study conducted on effective ways to treat it.

It’s important to understand that not all medical professionals are trained to diagnose OCD, and even fewer are qualified to treat it. Too often, OCD is used as a catchall diagnosis for behaviors that exhibit some similar symptoms. Not all obsessions are functions of OCD, nor are all compulsions. Only a trained professional can properly diagnose the differences and direct patients to the proper treatment.

A big difference among the various disorders is that OCD sufferers typically recognize their behavior as irrational, intrusive and disturbing, while other compulsions and addictive behaviors may actually be rewarding, at least outwardly. Compulsive eating, gambling and shopping are examples.

While there is no laboratory test to identify OCD, mental health professionals use diagnostic tools to measure the severity of obsessions and compulsions. If OCD is diagnosed, patients are then referred to a therapist trained in techniques shown to effectively relieve symptoms. The most widely recommended therapy is called Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) in which sufferers discuss triggering behaviors and are shown ways to minimize them. CBT is being used successfully and is recommended by respected organizations such as the National Institutes of Mental Health, the Mayo Clinic and the Harvard Medical School.

Beyond OCD is an organization devoted to better understanding of OCD, its diagnosis and treatment. If you are concerned that you or a loved one may have OCD, our web site has lots of information on the disorder, how to recognize it, and resources for additional information and treatment. Identifying the symptoms is the first step. Take the OCD Self-Screening Test on our web site that can help give you insights into your thoughts and behaviors. It’s free. But remember that only a qualified mental health professional can accurately test for and diagnose OCD.

Beyond OCD is committed to offering OCD sufferers and their loved ones the latest information on the disorder as well as carefully chosen sources for treatment. To learn more about OCD and treatments, visit BeyondOCD.org. We’re here to help you get the information you need to go beyond OCD.

 

 

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