Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder is troubling thoughts (obsessions) where people perform rituals or routines (compulsions) to manage their obsessions. The performance of these routines, such as handwashing, counting, or checking, eases the intensity of these thoughts, such as concerns about becoming ill, death, or something bad happening. But, these compulsions disrupt daily life due to the time a person spends performing them.
A specific type of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) called Exposure and Response Prevention is one of the most common and effective ways to treat OCD. It uses gradual exposure to troubling thoughts or ideas in a controlled environment where people use previously developed relaxation techniques and thought management strategies to calm themselves and work on resisting compulsive behavior. Other therapist interventions may also incorporate mindfulness exercises, other CBT techniques, group therapy, or medications.
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