Christian Counseling for OCD
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is one of the most life-altering mental health conditions out there. Intrusive thoughts, compulsive rituals, and a huge dose of related anxiety can cause utter misery for those who are suffering from this illness.
Do you find yourself over-analyzing every conversation you have?Are you always concerned about how you come across to people you interact with? Do you develop habits and obsessions that you believe will help alleviate your anxieties and reduce the risk of bad things happening to you?
If so, you may be suffering from OCD. But remember, there is hope! Through the right form of Christian counseling, you can break the chains of the mind and reclaim your life.
What Exactly is OCD?
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health condition that causes the presence of unwanted or “intrusive” thoughts that can be very difficult to control and overcome. Your mind can become overwhelmed with these thoughts that seem to go round and round like a stuck record.
In an attempt to stop the thoughts, a person with OCD may perform certain tasks or behaviors, sometimes repeatedly. For example, a person with OCD might have a fear of getting sick, causing them wash their hands repeatedly throughout the day.
So what is the difference between obsessions and compulsions?
Obsessions – Those who suffer from OCD often describe feeling trapped by ongoing or repeated thoughts. These may include any unwanted ideas or impulses that cause extreme anxiety or fear, usually intruding on normal thoughts and daily life.Such obsessions may include thoughts related to:
- A strong need and desire to achieve perfection.
- Fear of getting dirty, contracting germs, or getting sick.
- Persistent worry over the thoughts and motivations of those around you.
- An abject fear of harming yourself or others.
- Over-thinking things such as relationship issues.
Compulsions – In order to try and rid themselves of such obsessions, a person with OCD will often fall into ritualistic behaviors they believe will alleviate their thought processes. These may stay the same for long periods of time, while others might be complex and varied. Some key examples of compulsive behaviors include:
- Washing or ensuring that something has been done correctly.
- Counting, often while performing a related action. For example, switching a light on and off three times every time you leave the room.
- Frequently moving things, cleaning and ensuring your environment is in perfect order.
OCD can have a severe effect on the person’s mental health. Feeling as if you are held captive by intrusive thoughts and ritualistic obsessions can cause you to feel very low and even usher in a period of depression. It can feel hopeless,as if you will never overcome this plague of the mind. But you can. The first step? Get some professional help.
Christian Counseling for OCD in Newport Beach
So why would you choose a Christian counselor to help you with your OCD? Christian OCD counseling in Newport Beach offers you a safe place where you can be accepted just as you are – there is no judgment.
We will work alongside you to ensure that you feel listened to and respected, while also trying to help you reach your recovery goals. Faith can play an important role in our therapy, and we believe that a Bible-based approach can bring incredible healing and freedom.
While many secular counselors would say that there is no “cure” for OCD, but only a selection of management tools to help the person get on with their life, we believe that God can do all things. With a combination of prayerful counseling, professional techniques and the Holy Spirit working through it all, we truly believe that full recovery is possible.
What are some of the benefits of Christian OCD counseling?
- Helping you to better understand your symptoms, ridding you of the “fear factor.”
- Offering support in a safe, non-judgmental space to fully explore your thoughts and emotions.
- Finding ways to better manage your OCD symptoms and develop the tools you need so that your symptoms no longer dictate your daily life.
- Learning how to talk to loved ones about OCD in an open manner, as well as gaining an understanding of how your symptoms affect your closest personal relationships.
- Providing you with a wonderful sense of hope, inner peace, and healing through faith in Christ.
Finding Freedom – OCD and Christianity
For Christians, OCD can be particularly devastating. Many believe that if they do not follow their rituals and obsessions perfectly, God will punish them. This is twisted thinking that needs to be straightened out. Others may feel as if they are coming under severe spiritual attack, or that they lack faith if they cannot break free through prayer alone.
These misconceptions must be laid to rest. Christian counseling can help you achieve a breakthrough through a combination of evidence-based psychotherapy techniques and the harnessing of the spiritual power available to us all as followers of Christ.
What to Expect in Christian Counseling for OCD
The most effective and common form of therapy used in Christian counseling for OCD is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) called “exposure and response prevention,” which includes:
- Clearly identifying your obsessions and rituals (compulsions) and the things you tend to try and avoid.
- Determining the amount of anxiety each obsession causes.
- Repeated exposure to the particular obsessions while refusing to complete the compulsive act.
- Gradually working up towards exposure to your greatest obsessions, which cause you the most anxiety.
- Overcoming the false belief that failing to complete compulsive acts will cause bad things to happen to you.
A Note on OCD in Children and Teens
OCD can affect children and teens and may require a particular form of help from a professional who is familiar with the specific challenges that are associated with OCD at a young age. Children may find it difficult to express how OCD is affecting them and may be confused by their obsessive thought processes and perceived need to act compulsively.
Older children and teens might feel embarrassed about their symptoms, and consequently may allow them to fester without seeking out help. With this in mind, our Christian child and adolescent counselors offer a compassionate and safe environment that encourages young people to be open and honest about their struggles.
If your child or teen is suffering from OCD, we know how difficult this can be for both parent and child. Our experienced counselors are specialists in Christian counseling for children and teens who suffer fromobsessive-compulsive disorder, and we will do everything in our power to help your child journey towards freedom.
A Few FAQ’s About OCD
Is it curable?
Not usually, but with Christian counseling, it is possible to get the symptoms under control. Plus, we always hope and pray for complete healing.
What is the prognosis for OCD with treatment?
Extremely positive if the sufferer commits to the treatment process. Indeed, up to 80% of those dealing with OCD improve greatly when engaged with the right treatment.
Do I need medications to treat OCD?
Many who suffer from OCD are prescribed medications to help ease their symptoms. However, some are able to find enough relief through Christian counseling for OCD alone. Many will take medication to aid their overall recovery.
If You Are Struggling With OCD, Get in Touch
OCD can be a terrifying condition to live with. Experiencing a daily onset of ritualistic thinking, obsessions and fear-driven compulsions can be overwhelming, and can leave you feeling hopeless. That’s where we come in.
The expertly trained counselorsat Newport Beach Christian Counseling are well-versed in helping those who feel as if they have nowhere else to turn to for help. Endowed with all the spiritual resources granted to us through Christ, we will do everything we can to help you achieve your goals and find true and lasting freedom from your OCD.