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Is treatment for OCD worth it?
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StudyGuru248 posted:
Hello. I am 17 years old, and I have very severe OCD among other anxiety disorders. I have been on a number of antidepressants, but none of them have provided any real relief. I see my therapist weekly, and she helps me push through week by week.

My OCD symptoms are so severe that I can barely function. For example, a homework assignment that is supposed to take an hour takes me four hours. My therapist and I have not worked much on ERP because I want to find a medication that helps at least a little before attempting it. I already average a dozen panic attacks a week.

This coming May, I decided that I am going to seek more intensive help. However, this thought is constantly on my mind, causing me to fear such a drastic life change more and more. Is overcoming OCD really worth all the anxiety and panic it is going to cause me?

I truly appreciate your time and any insights you may have.
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BasketCase responded:
From what you have described here, I'm pretty sure I know what you mean and what you are going through. If I understand correctly, I've been going through somewhat the same thing myself.

You say that you are going to seek more intensive help, and while I think I have an idea of what that may be, I was wondering if you would be willing to share. It may help give us more insight and help us be more informed to give better advice.

All My Best,
~S
 
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StudyGuru248 replied to BasketCase's response:
Because I have not determined if overcoming OCD is what I want to do, I have not chosen a specific treatment option yet. If I do decide to seek additional help, it will most likely be outpatient. The following website gives an excellent description of this.

http://www.anxietysolutions.net/intensives.htm#What%20kinds%20of%20intensives%20are%20there

Thank you for your time.
 
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Patricia Farrell, PhD responded:
OCD is a different disorder for anyone, but it's worth exploring treatments to help deal with it and, hopefully, lessen it.

I hope that you have an experienced psychiatrist who specializes in anxiety disorders because there may be meds other than ADs which would be helpful to you. This should be explored.

I believe you do want to get help with this and the ERP should be something you can research on your own to get a better understanding of what research is saying about it and its effectiveness. You should also be getting some help with self-help techniques that may be useful to you such as relaxation brething (see our Tips column) and, possibly, thought stopping. You can discuss all of this with your therapist.
 
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StudyGuru248 replied to Patricia Farrell, PhD's response:
Yes, my psychiatrist does specialize in anxiety disorders.

I have already done a ton of research on OCD and ERP. I have also learned various self-help techniques and thought-stopping strategies. However, I am extremely hesitant to start implementing them. OCD has essentially become my identity, so I really do not know if I want to get better. Nor do I know if I want to become calm, since I utterly detest change. I am sure this sounds completely bizarre, but this has been a major setback in my treatment. Do you have any advice or suggestions?


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