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Coping with a new OCD diagnosis


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I knew deep down inside something is off...my thoughts are always on "repeat", I take pictures of things to convince myself they are unplugged, shut, off, etc. Because if I don't I tend to go back and check. And this is no fun if you are driving somewhere and get that feeling you didn't unplug, shut, or turn off and have to turn around. My pdoc basically told me there is an overlap in my delusions from schizoaffective disorder and OCD obsessions and compulsions. They feed into one another. I get intrusive thoughts I pray go away but never do. But now there is a name for the suffering. I was aware of my psychosis, mania, and depression...but this really opened my eyes to knowing there's more to the picture. How do I cope with this new diagnosis and how can I help cope with it? Any self help advice?

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OCD is on the anxiety spectrum, so any good tdoc will help you dive in to find out what your bottom line fears are, and slowly have you eliminate your behaviors. Did the new pdoc say what kind you had? There are a lot of different versions out there. I tend to ruminate, which I thought was depression, but turns out it's severe severe anxiety. BP and OCD/anxiety definitely are buddies. I suggest talking to a tdoc- do you have one?

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You are still the same person as you were the day before the diagnosis. Don't let the label throw you. Hopefully, it will lead to more effective treatment. I take that as a positive.

 

As to how to cope with OCD itself, meds help and therapy definitely helps. OCD actually can have a very good prognosis, if you take the meds and work hard in therapy. I was fortunate to overcome it, although I realize that maybe that is just my experience. For me it was a matter of breaking learned thinking patterns and learned behavior. That is tough to do and is why therapy is absolutely necessary.

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When I got my OCD diagnosis, I was so committed to doing therapy. And then my pdoc started me on meds and they helped almost immediately. I ended up not needing therapy for my OCD because the meds were so effective. I still see a little glimpse of OCD every now and then, but it's so small that it doesn't stress me out, compared to how I was feeling before I started the meds. I don't know what would work best for you, obviously, but both meds and therapy should be good options. Best of luck to you in feeling better.

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