OCD Treatment - obsessive compulsive disorder treatmemt
The psychiatrist Jeffrey M. Swhwartz has developed a treatment for OCD that tries to unlock the link between the orbital cortex and the cingulated and normalizes the function of the caudate.
He gets patients to shift the caudate 'manually' by paying constant, effortful attention and actively focusing on something besides the worry, such as a new, pleasurable activity. He divides the therapy into a number of steps. The first step in the treatment is for the person with OCD to relabel what is happening, so that he realises that he is experiencing an attack of OCD. He needs to realise that it is not really an attack or germs, AIDS or battery acid. The person must learn to get some distance from the content of the obsession and view it in the say that Buddhists view suffering in meditation: they observe its effects on them and so slightly separate themselves from it.
However, often in the treatment of OCD the therapists have focused on the content of the obsession.
Therefore the most common treatment for OCD is called 'exposure and response prevention.' This is a form of behaviour therapy that helps about half of OCD patients to make some improvement. If the patient is afraid of germs he is incrementally exposed to more of them, in an attempt to desensitize him. However, the problem with this is that many patients simply refuse to attempt such treatments. The second part of behavioural treatment is 'response prevention' : preventing the patient from acting on his compulsion. Cognitive Therapy, on the other hand, is based on the premise that problems with mood and anxiety are caused by cognitive distortions.
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