For most people, Intrusive Thoughts and its association with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a confusing and difficult experience. In order to overcome this condition, you need a better understanding of how it works and then use the 4 effective ways to treat Intrusive thoughts.
Firstly Like most anxiety disorders, the underlying cause of the problem is stress and anxiety. In order to treat this condition, you need to focus on the triggers causing anxiety.
What is Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder?
While suffering from this condition, some people tend to struggle in their heads. They don’t experience any change in their direct or visible behaviour. For instance, an individual with intrusive thoughts of accidentally burning down his neighbourhood or killing loved ones may constantly think about such things, and try to figure out how he can undo these thoughts.
Most therapists refer to this condition as “obsessive only”. Such people don’t take any actions to undo their thoughts and just keep thinking of ways. There are also other people who take actions to get rid of their thoughts.
For instance, a person thinking about stabbing his loved ones may keep all the knives locked in the attic. Similarly, a person who has a fear of fire may keep checking the stove to make sure it’s turned off. In order to get rid of intrusive thoughts OCD, the person may get involved in what therapists call “rituals”.
Therapists may ask patients to undergo an obsessive-compulsive disorder test to determine the severity of the condition. In both cases, the patient desperately tries to get rid of the thoughts. However, the thoughts tend to get more persistent over time.
4 Effective Ways to Treat Intrusive Thoughts
There are some effective ways to get rid of intrusive thoughts. It’s important to change the pattern, and try to do things differently, especially “rituals”. Most therapists recommend 4 techniques to get rid of such thoughts, and overcome OCD. These have been discussed below.
Use the Rewind Technique
The rewind technique is one of the best ways to get rid of intrusive thoughts. If you ask an OCD patient to not indulge in his compulsion, he’s likely to get very anxious.
The Rewind technique can be quite helpful for traumatized and phobic patients. It can neutralize the compulsion of thinking about or doing things in a certain way. It’s important to feel relaxed about the compulsion.
The first step is to accept that you have a compulsion. The next step is to rewind and understand that the last time you got involved with it, nothing major happened. Such thinking will make sure you don’t feel the need of the compulsion over time.
Separate OCD from Core Identity
Just like other anxiety disorders, OCD isn’t the person. It’s a parasite that feeds off the fears and personality traits of the person. It’s important to understand that OCD does not make you who you are, but the other way around. Therefore, bringing some subtle changes in your personality may help you overcome OCD.
Interrupt the Pattern
As mentioned earlier, this is the most important thing to get rid of intrusive thoughts OCD. It’s important to understand that compulsive behaviours tend to become stereotypical over time. Thus, the behaviour may become a fixed pattern with some repeated order and recognizable steps.
For instance, if you wash your hands every 10 minutes, you should indulge yourself in some activity after 8-9 minutes. This will make sure you’re busy when you really feel the need to wash your hands. You may even get away from a water source for the time being. Over time, you will realize that your compulsion isn’t unchangeable.
Changing your compulsion in small ways is always better than trying to remove it completely. As mentioned earlier, a therapist can conduct an obsessive-compulsive disorder test to determine the severity of the condition.
There are many therapists who use hypnosis to help patients get rid of intrusive thoughts and overcome obsessive compulsive disorder. It’s important to understand that OCD is anxiety driven. Hypnosis can help you overcome anxiety, and make you feel relaxed. Therefore, it can be quite effective to overcome OCD.
These were some of the most effective therapeutic techniques to help you overcome OCD, and get rid of intrusive thoughts. The success rate of these techniques depends on your willingness, and guidance from a professional. It’s better to visit a professional therapist to seek help and make sure you feel more relaxed.
As mentioned earlier, Intrusive thoughts are anxiety and stress based. Focus on the triggers that cause anxiety and you will be able to overcome this problem.