OCD, while not completely curable, can be treated. The focus area is usually reducing compulsive behaviours and helping with distressing thoughts. The key aim is to reduce symptoms to a manageable level and teach certain coping skills to the individual for the future.
Look around you and name three things you see. Then, name three sounds you hear. Finally, move three parts of your body — your ankle, fingers, or arm.
When you find yourself getting anxious or worried, stop to ask yourself questions like – is this a productive thought? Is it helping me get closer to my goal?. If you can identify negative thoughts then you can easily stop your thought process. This takes practice to learn and might be difficult for some.
OCD often provokes anxiety and distress, which leads to restlessness and a pounding of the heart which can further lead to more stress. A simple stop and breathing technique is very helpful to calm yourself down and reduce the symptoms.
Breathing exercises are powerful relaxation techniques that can help ease your body and mind of anxiety while turning your attention towards the present.
Exercising regularly, eating balanced meals, getting enough sleep, and staying connected to people who care about you are great ways to help reduce anxiety symptoms and complement a healthy lifestyle.
There are many ways in which you can train your brain to identify obsessive thoughts and prevent compulsive behaviours. These techniques include writing down your worries and getting them out of your system, shifting worries from long-term problems to daily routines and solutions that would help you, and interrupting the worry cycle by keeping busy.
No direct relation between drinking water and OCD has been established yet, but studies have shown that those who are hydrated have a lesser chance of developing anxiety than those dehydrated. Always staying hydrated helps the body and the brain function optimally.
If you find yourself getting anxious and worried about obsessive thoughts, it is always helpful to stop whatever you are doing or thinking and just take deep breaths. This simple technique has proven effective in the past to reduce immediate symptoms like anxiety and distress.
Exercising regularly, developing a good sleep routine, and avoiding stimulants like caffeine right before bedtime are a few ways you can reduce night-time OCD.
Turning off all electronics before nighttime and creating a comfortable area for sleep are also good ways to help with a good night’s sleep. Mindfulness techniques and meditation have also been shown to be effective.
A few studies have indicated cold showers taken regularly may help in reducing anxiety symptoms over time, and therefore help with OCD. The link hasn’t been established convincingly yet and shouldn’t replace other techniques or help with OCD.
If these tips still don’t work, reach out to Mindworks Counselling for an online counselling session.