Dr. Robert Detlefsen
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Counseling for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) in Chicago, Illinois & Iowa
Do you have recurrent, persistent thoughts, images or impulses that cause anxiety and distress? Do you sometimes feel that these are these not simply excessive worries about real-life problems, but something more?
Do you perform rituals compulsively? Do you avoid things you really should do or would want to do except for your fears? Does avoidance or rituals have a significant impact on your life? Do rituals cause you to be late to events? Do they interfere with your relationships or your work? How much time do the obsessions and/or compulsions occupy your day on average? Is it an hour or more?
What effect have the intrusive thoughts and compulsive behaviors had on your life? Have they caused you a lot of distress, torment, or emotional pain? Have they significantly interfered with your social life, your schoolwork, your job, or your ability to function in other important areas of your life?
Uncontrollable, reoccurring thoughts (obsessions) and behaviors (compulsions)? Call (888) 870-1775(888) 870-1775
The essential features of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) are recurrent obsessive thoughts, images and feelings that create anxiety or distress and compulsive urges to behave in ways that provide some reassurance or safety.
The type of OCD most familiar to the general public is fear of contamination. Individuals with this type of OCD have obsessions about avoiding contamination and tend to clean and wash excessively. As with many types of OCD there is a bit of truth in the fear of contamination, things certainly can be contaminated and there are bacteria and trace toxins everywhere. In OCD, a very small possibility of dangerous levels of contamination is exaggerated into certain catastrophe.
It is important to realize that OCD creates feelings, not just thoughts and images. People with OCD usually realize that their thoughts are unrealistic, but this insight provides no relief. They still cannot resist compulsive avoidance or the performance of rituals because of these feelings.
The most effective psychological treatment for OCD is exposure and response prevention, a key technique of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This means facing feared situations and not performing the usual rituals. This seems frightening to many people, but treatment is specifically designed for each client individually, so it can be as aggressive or cautious as desired.
Therapists at Ardent Counseling Center have worked successfully with clients who have not succeeded with other therapists, because in addition to the standard exposure and response prevention, our therapist include a serious focus on gradually and systematically reducing the rituals that patients perform in their day-to-day lives. These changes in daily rituals are a variation of exposure and response prevention and a particularly powerful way to reduce and eventually eliminate OCD symptoms.
Contact us for more information about OCD and how we can help you can rid yourself of obsessions and compulsions.
We look forward to working with you.