Kyra's Story (07:14)
Kyra Mills used rituals and organization to calm her anxiety as a child, and refused therapy. Children do not recognize OCD rituals outside their self-concept. As an adult, she became exhausted by them and wanted to change.
Understanding OCD (03:30)
Patients engage in compulsive rituals to lessen anxiety and neutralize intrusive thoughts or ideas. Functional MRIs show that brain areas misfire; low serotonin indicates brain disease. Patients are often co-diagnosed with depression or anxiety but recognize their rituals are irrational.
Medical Innovations: Deep Brain Stimulation (01:50)
New research focuses on networks mediating reward, emotion and cognition. A therapeutic approach targets regions interfacing between emotion and cognitive control areas to help patients control OCD.
Treating OCD (04:35)
Kyra had trouble finding a life partner to tolerate her ritualistic behavior. Cognitive behavioral therapy with exposure and response prevention helps eliminate compulsions. Medications are also available, but take longer to be effective.
Parenting with OCD (03:50)
Kyra's compulsions included showering multiple times a day. She has worked to overcome ritualistic behavior through talk therapy but transferred her anxiety around bedtime to controlling her daughter's sleeping conditions. She has struggled to find an effective medicine combination.
Team Healthcare Approach (02:53)
Primary care physicians should communicate with psychiatrists and therapists to support OCD patients. The condition affects approximately 1% of the U.S. population. Kyra feels more in control of her anxiety that triggers compulsions and ritualistic behavior.
Advice for OCD Patients (00:57)
Kyra recommends finding the right therapist, being patient with the medication process, and trusting that things will improve.
Credits: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder—Second Opinion (01:11)
Credits: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder—Second Opinion
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