Living with OCD

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A significant proportion of people with OCD improve considerably after receiving appropriate treatment. However, it is also true that some individuals, despite receiving this treatment, continue to have obsessions and compulsions that cause them difficulties.

patient doctor, woman

Relapses. In some cases of OCD, relapses are strongly associated with a specific issue such as relationship problems, family difficulties or problems at work or school. When this occurs, it helps if the patient undergoes treatment with a professional who will teach them how to better cope with such situations. Occasionally, certain general lifestyle changes may help reduce the impact of their obsessions and compulsions.

Man swimming

Preventing relapses. It is unknown whether relapses can be prevented in people with OCD, but healthy physical and psychological habits such as regular physical activity, good sleeping habits, participating in leisure activities, good social support, and so on, probably help minimise the chances of suffering a relapse. In individuals who have received psychological treatment, it is important they continue to apply the skills learnt.

Blue and green pills

Difficulty adhering to the treatment. Some people with OCD must take medication for long periods and they may easily get tired of it. In such cases, it is essential that any difficulties in adhering to the drug therapy are discussed with the healthcare professional. Certain negative side effects of the medications can be improved by following some simple guidelines.

Person touching another person's back, emotional support

Sharing experiences. Some people with OCD may find it helps to share their experiences of the disorder (or its treatment) with other people. Participating in support groups or associations for people with OCD can help significantly with recovery.

Father, mother and child family

Identifying the first signs of a relapse. Quite a few OCD patients find it hard to identify the signs of relapse, so it is a good idea if their relatives tell them when the first signs appear.

Substantiated information by:

Luisa Lázaro García
Miquel Àngel Fullana Rivas

Published: 7 February 2019
Updated: 7 February 2019

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