Allied Psychiatry & Mental Health
Psychiatrists located in Newport Beach, CA
While everyone has specific routines they like to follow, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a type of anxiety disorder in which repeated, negative thoughts and fears drive you to compulsive, ritualistic behaviors. At Allied Psychiatry & Mental Health in Newport Beach, California, Harvard-trained psychiatrist Hadi Estakhri, MD, offers expert diagnosis and treatments for OCD to help you regain control of your fears and lead a healthy and fulfilling life. Call or make an appointment online today.
OCD Q & A
What is OCD?
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a type of mental disorder where recurrent intrusive thoughts and fears lead to ritualistic behaviors. Everyone has intrusive and unwanted thoughts and follows specific routines. What makes OCD different is that you are driven to compulsive behaviors because they alleviate your recurring, negative thoughts or fears.
You may find that, over time, your compulsive behaviors and rituals become more disruptive and interfere with your ability to function normally and complete your regular responsibilities or participate in leisure activities.
What’s the difference between obsessions and compulsions?
Obsessions are your recurrent and intrusive thoughts and fears. You may be overwhelmed with worries about your family’s health or safety, or your obsessions could focus on germs, contamination, and cleanliness. Other common obsession themes include a need for exactness, symmetry, and order, religion, or forbidden sexual subjects. Obsessions cause severe distress and lead to compulsive behaviors.
Compulsions are the ritualistic behaviors that you complete to alleviate the distress and fear caused by your obsessive thoughts. For example, many people compulsively clean themselves or their homes because of their obsessive thoughts about contamination and cleanliness.
Other prevalent compulsive behaviors include:
- Checking, which ranges from checking you locked your door to re-driving your route to work several times to make sure you didn’t hurt anyone on the way
- Repeating phrases
- Ordering and arranging
- Mental compulsions, such as silently repeating a phrase or prayer
OCD is often progressive when left untreated. Your compulsions may be manageable to begin with, but, eventually, they could take over your life and get in the way of work, school, or relationships.
How is OCD treated?
Dr. Estakhri offers thorough assessments to diagnose OCD. He uses the information gathered during your evaluation to create a customized treatment plan to relieve your symptoms and restore your quality of life.
While you may not be able to cure your OCD, with medication, therapy, and some lifestyle adjustments, you can manage your condition and lead a healthy, active, and fulfilling life. For example, many patients benefit from a combination of medication to reduce their anxiety and therapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, to learn to recognize your negative thoughts and fears and adjust your emotional and behavioral responses.
Call Allied Psychiatry & Mental Health or make an appointment online today for expert treatment for OCD.