Psychopaths start doing something subconsciously

How can I get rid of obsessive thoughts?

Dr-Elze.deDr. Elze

Lots of people with Obsessive thoughts have made the experience that obsessive-compulsive thoughts grow more and more become independentand that it is very difficult to get rid of these thoughts.

The obsessive-compulsive thoughts can influence the sick so much that their thinking is so preoccupied with the obsessive-compulsive thoughts that there is hardly any room for the usual everyday activities.

Before we can talk about how to get rid of obsessive-compulsive thoughts, we must first consider which ones different ways of obsessive-compulsive thoughts exist at all, because they are also different therapy.

In psychology, a distinction is first made whether it is obsessive-compulsive thoughts in the context of a Obsessive-compulsive disorder or obsessive-compulsive illness, or whether it is a question of recurring stressful thoughts with an obsessive-compulsive nature other mental illnessessuch as depression or anxiety. In addition, there are also a few physical illnessthat can induce obsessive thoughts.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Obsessive-compulsive disorder with obsessive-compulsive thoughts

The Obsessive-compulsive disorder are characterized by the fact that those affected repeatedly suffer from intrusive impulses or thoughts, which put a lot of strain on them and through which they are in some cases severely restricted in their way of life.

The obsessive thoughts are further differentiated into the so-called Obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a stimulus character and the Obsessive-compulsive thoughts of a reactive nature. The difference is as follows: Obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a stimulus character lead to a for those affected Increase in tension. So the thoughts themselves are the compulsion that needs to be dealt with. Obsessive-compulsive thoughts of a reactive nature on the other hand lead - at least in the short term - to one Reduction of tension (see below).

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a stimulus character

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a stimulus character lead to a for those affected as described above Increase in tension. Examples of this are thoughts like "I could do something to my children", "I could have hit the pedestrian." etc.

In the therapy of obsessive-compulsive thoughts with stimulus-character the so-called has prevailed in the meantime cognitive-behavioral therapy, also Behavior therapy called, enforced. At the same time, many sufferers can benefit from drug treatment. The individual therapy options are described in more detail below.

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts of a reactive nature

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts of a reactive nature, also Thought constraints on the other hand, lead to a reduction in tension. These obsessive thoughts are unconsciously or consciously used by those affected "Neutralization" used by other, more “threatening” coercive impulses.

The obsessive-compulsive thoughts with the character of a reaction should neutralize or undo other compulsions. An example of this is, for example, compulsory counting, in which those affected try to cope with other, even more unpleasant compulsions and fears by continuously counting or stringing numbers in a certain system (e.g. counting in steps of three).

Here is an example: For example, an obsessive-compulsive patient has the compulsion that he has to keep checking that nothing has happened to anyone in his family. Since this compulsion is of course very stressful for him, he tries (unconsciously) to find a solution from the compulsion. Since it is impossible for him, for obvious reasons, to achieve permanent security for his family members in real life, he (again, unconsciously) deviates to obsessive-compulsive thoughts: "If I keep adding three and three and adding three to the result over and over again, nothing will happen to my family!" This may sound illogical to an outsider, but obsessions do develop own logicthat no longer have to have anything to do with the reality that those affected knew before their obsessive-compulsive disease.

This makes for that treatment an important difference: the obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a reaction character are only a reaction to another compulsion - the underlying compulsions must therefore be found out and dealt with.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts in other mental illnesses

In addition to the Obsessive-compulsive disorder there are also various other mental illnesses that can be associated with compulsions. A typical report from an obsessive-compulsive patient: "And in addition to my compulsions to count and wash, I also suffer from the obsessive thoughts that all other people judge me overly critically and that I always do everything wrong."

Attention! The last two fears this obsessive-compulsive patient reported can Compulsions, but it can also be, for example, social fears in the context of a Social phobia, or pessimistic fears in the context of a depression act. These subtle but important differences are usually only found out after an intensive assessment by a correspondingly specialized doctor or psychologist. However, this makes a big difference in terms of treatment. If, for example, it is a question of stressful thoughts in the context of a social phobia, those affected have to practice how to overcome their social fears, for example, compulsory protocols and the like are of little help in this case.

In addition to the depressions and the Anxiety disorders there are various other mental illnesses that can be associated with compulsions. The so-called, for example, is relatively common Compulsive Personality Disorderwhich goes hand in hand with a high degree of perfectionism, excessive conscientiousness and constant controls. In the case of this disease, therapy is about, among other things, how those affected can regain more serenity in their everyday lives.

Compulsions can also be used in the so-called Hypochondriac Disorder occur in which the sick suffer from constant disease worries. Also the schizophrenic diseases and the so-called Body Dysmorphic Disorder can be associated with compulsions. A big difference between the obsessive-compulsive thoughts described above and the last-mentioned diseases is that the sufferer is affected by a Obsessive-compulsive disorder mostly deliberately are above the fact that their compulsions can bring a short-term reduction of tension, but that the compulsions are not a realistic solution to the basic problem in the long term. In contrast to this, with schizophrenia, for example, in which they can also develop obsessive-compulsive symptoms in a delusional state, are, so to speak, one hundred percent convinced of the correctness and necessity of compulsion.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts in connection with physical illness

There are different neurological diseaseswhich can lead to the occurrence of compulsions. These are mostly diseases that damage a certain region in the brain, the so-called Basal ganglia, accompanied. These include, for example Chorea minor and the Tourette syndrome. Even after an injury to the brain, for example after a severe one traumatic brain injury, obsessive-compulsive symptoms may occur in some cases.

In addition to the compulsions, these diseases also go along with it other neurological changes so that a doctor or neurologist can pinpoint the difference between these disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder. If at first time If compulsions arise and there is a suspicion of one of the diseases just mentioned, a neurological examination should also be carried out in addition, because the treatment of the latter diseases would initially focus on the therapy of the basic neurological diseases.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Examples of obsessive-compulsive thoughts

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts can take many forms. Very often they take the form of aggressive obsessions (“I could do something to my child / partner ...!”) Or in the form of embarrassing fears (“I could scream something obscene!”).

See the table below for some examples of very common obsessions. Before reading the table, however, you should pay attention to something very important: Even if the content of some obsessive thoughts can appear very threatening for the person concerned the content of obsessive-compulsive thoughts is completely interchangeable!

Why this? The obsessive thoughts are always aimed precisely at the area that is relevant for the person concerned in his current phase of life most threatening is.

This phenomenon is very important for understanding obsessive-compulsive thoughts, because a lot of those affected ask themselves again and again - especially with aggressive obsessive-compulsive thoughts - "Am I really that kind of person who could do something like this ...?" The answer to that: “No! The compulsion has just picked out exactly the place where you are most vulnerable. "

Once again: The content of obsessive-compulsive thoughts is initially completely interchangeable - even if it appears threatening to the individual. Obsessive-compulsive thoughts “want” to pounce on the very point where I can be hurt most deeply, and they are (unfortunately) very resourceful.

Many of those affected are familiar with a similar sequence of obsessive-compulsive thoughts, as described by the following patient:

Andrea (34 y.): Obsessive-compulsive thoughts started sometime in my youth. During puberty, thoughts with sexual content were in the foreground. The thought "I could be gay!" has tormented me again and again over the years. As I got older and became more confident about my sexuality, my thoughts changed. All of a sudden there was this thought “I could stab my partner!”. And this thought also disappeared after a while, but after the birth of my first child I suddenly feared that I might do something to my child. It was only during the course of therapy that I found out that over the past few years, compulsion has always caught me exactly where I was most sensitive. "

The content of obsessive-compulsive thoughts is usually geared towards what the person concerned fears most in the respective period of life.

The experienced reader may notice that many of these obsessive-compulsive thoughts also occur in a similar form in other clinical pictures. The thought, "I could do something embarrassing!" could, for example, also occur in the context of a social phobia. And the thoughts "I could make others sick!" or "I could get infected!" also occur, for example, in the context of a so-called hypochondriac disorder. Whether the above thoughts are really obsessive-compulsive thoughts in the context of an obsessive-compulsive disorder should always be worked out with an experienced doctor or psychologist.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Aggressive obsessions

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts often have threatening or aggressive content, such as the fear of harming themselves or others, the fear of uttering obscene thoughts or insults, or the fear of acting on the basis of uncontrollable impulses, e.g. towards a loved one prick with the knife.

These aggressive obsessions are often a very great burden for those affected, as the sick increasingly doubt themselves and they repeatedly question themselves “Would I do something like that?”, “Am I such a bad person?”, etc.

The obsessional thoughts of hurting someone else because one was not paying enough attention, such as the fear that someone might have run into someone unnoticed, are also very common. Many people with obsessive thoughts have repeatedly had to turn around in their car to make sure that they have not caused an accident.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts about pollution

Also very common are Obsessive thoughts in relation to Pollutionsuch as concern about soiling or contamination in the apartment, worries or disgust with regard to body excretions such as saliva, urine or feces, concern about supposedly toxic substances or concern about germs.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Obsessive-compulsive thoughts with sexual content

In addition to the aggressive obsessions, the Obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a sexual content often the greatest burden for the sick. Many affected people know the excessive fear that they could carry out unauthorized sexual acts such as incest etc. Obsessive-compulsive thoughts also occur more frequently in relation to alleged homosexuality.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Obsessive thoughts with moral or religious content

Obsessive thoughts often also refer to certain moral or religious Content, such as the fear of committing blasphemy or certain sins.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

More obsessions

In addition to the examples above, there are various other obsessive thoughts such as worrying about remembering certain things, being overly concerned about certain parts of the body, being overly preoccupied with certain sounds or pieces of music, etc.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

What are not obsessions?

There are various thoughts in which it is not always easy to distinguish between obsessive-compulsive thoughts and other clinical pictures.

For example, the concern that a certain disaster is imminent in the future can arise in the context of an obsessive-compulsive disorder as well as depression or generalized anxiety disorder.

The fear of being responsible for the fact that something unpleasant happens to other people can appear both as an obsessive thought as well as in the context of pronounced social anxiety.

The aggressive thoughts mentioned above can occur in the context of obsessive-compulsive thoughts or, for example, in impulse control disorders, etc.

A precise distinction between obsessive-compulsive thoughts and other illnesses is very important for the correct planning of the treatment and should therefore be worked out by those affected together with an experienced psychotherapist or neurologist.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Causes and "triggers" of obsessive-compulsive thoughts

Most people with Obsessive thoughts keep looking for the root cause for their compulsions.

Before we get into the causes of obsessive-compulsive thoughts, we need to consider a fundamental difference: what are “causes” and what are “triggers” for the obsessions?

Is there any difference between “causes” and “triggers”?

In the German language, unfortunately, a very imprecise distinction is made between the terms “cause” and “trigger”. However, since the distinction between these two phenomena - especially with obsessive thoughts - is very important, we would like to use the English term “trigger” in the following instead of the term “trigger”. To better distinguish between “triggers” and “causes”, we need to take a closer look at the following points:

What are triggers for obsessive-compulsive thoughts?

As Trigger denotes those conditions that can trigger an obsessive thought in a certain situation. It is noticeable that the triggers are often disproportionate to the intensity of the obsessive thought triggered. For example, the sight of a kitchen knife can make the obsessional thought, "I can kill my children!" trigger.

In contrast to the “causes” of the compulsions, a trigger is only the ultimate trigger for the current obsessive thought.Accordingly, the trigger says little about the real causes of the compulsions. Rather, it is the signal to which the head reacts with the phenomenon of “obsessive thoughts”.

And the causes of obsessive-compulsive thoughts ...?

The question of the causes for the Obsessive thoughts we have to take a closer look at us, because as with all mental illnesses, obsessive-compulsive thoughts always come together with several factors that ultimately lead to the emergence of compulsions.

The above-described obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a reaction character are very often large fears and Uncertainties in the background of the constraints. These fears can burden those affected so much that “their head” has to find a way out of these threatening emotions. To do this, he uses obsessive thoughts to help, even if it may seem illogical at first glance.

To be able to imagine this more precisely, we should look at another example. Imagine someone who loves his family more than anything - and who is very worried that something might happen to a member of his family. This person tries to do everything to ensure that nothing happens to his family. And yet - in reality, he will repeatedly experience that he cannot protect his family from all possible dangers and threats. His worries about the family keep growing - and at the same time he feels that he is helpless and at the mercy of the “threats” and “fate”. This makes him feel very guilty and think, “I should take better care of my family! If I can't do that, it's my fault if something happens to you! "

Since he cannot create one hundred percent security for his family in the “real” world, his head tries to find another way out of this problem. He may then try (unconsciously) to resolve the perceived “threat” through “magical obsessions”. From this, for example, the following chain of thoughts can develop, from which an obsessive thought develops:

Even if the person concerned in our example knows, of course, “from a distance” that he is through the thought "If I keep thinking about the word ... nothing will happen to my family!" cannot really protect his family in reality, this one stays with him hopethat perhaps it is precisely this thought that saves his family from misfortune. The obsessive thought brings him - even if only for a short time - a certain relief and reduction of his tension (“I can do something for the safety of my family ...”).

And now, unfortunately, he quickly finds himself in an initially hopeless situation - because he has to keep using the (obsessive) thought, since the apparent threat he experiences for his family does not really diminish in the real world. He has to keep using the obsessive thought - and he cannot simply “leave it out” either, "Because then I would be to blame if something happened to my family ...". So he gets further and further into a vicious circle in which the obsessive thought can become stronger and stronger.

We could find many other examples of obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a reaction character - but let's first look at obsessive-compulsive thoughts with a stimulus character, as it is precisely these that are often the most stressful for those affected.

Here again a field report that is very typical for this type of obsessive thought:

Christian (39 yrs.): “I've been pondering about it for years ... What could be the cause of my thoughts that I might stab my partner with a knife, for example ...? These thoughts can only be in my head because I'm really a bad person ...? Or...? I would never do it ... but just thinking about it proves that I have to be a bad person ... ?? Or not...? But surely someone normal doesn't have such thoughts ...? So I'm sure I'm a psychopath ...! I'm sure I'll get schizophrenia at some point if I keep brooding ... But am I really that kind of person who could do something like that ...? "

Just this last consideration - "Am I really that kind of person who could do something like this?" - is very typical for this type of obsessive thought. In the background, there is often profound uncertainty about yourself and your own strengths and weaknesses. More on this below.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Obsessive thoughts: The struggle with one's own insecurity

With a lot of obsessive thoughts there is always a common cause in the background: Your own insecurity and the worry of “being a bad person”.

Let's take another example:

A person without obsessions drives past a cyclist in his car. After the cyclist has passed through, the thought "I could have hit the cyclist!" Occurs to him for a moment. He looks in the rearview mirror, sees nothing special - and drives on. After ten seconds at the latest, he has forgotten the thought. The process is completely different for a person with an obsessive-compulsive disorder:

The victim drives past the cyclist and thinks, “I could have hit the cyclist!”. He looks in the rearview mirror - and has nowhere to see the cyclist ... He drives on and for the next five minutes ponders whether he might have hit the cyclist after all. He can no longer stand the uncertainty - slows down - and drives back to the alleged accident site. But there is no cyclist lying on the ground ... Maybe he has already got up again and drove on ...? Or maybe the ambulance got there so quickly and is gone again ...? Are there broken pieces on the floor somewhere that could indicate an accident ...? What kind of piece of glass is there on the floor ...? Is that part of his bike ...? And it's my fault ...! I will never be happy again ...! If my family finds out that I killed the cyclist ... they will never talk to me again ... and everyone in town will point their fingers at them because they are related to me ... I am one terrible person ... That I could do this to my family ... "

As you can see: the meaning that the thought “I could have hit the cyclist!” differs immensely between a person without obsessions and someone who suffers from compulsions. The person affected in our example may spend the rest of the day pondering what could have happened to the cyclist - and what a terrible, irresponsible person he himself is that he could do such a thing to his family ... and his Uncertainty grows and continues to grow.

A detailed overview of the causes of obsessive-compulsive thoughts would make the length of the text too large at this point. For a more detailed overview of the causes of compulsions, please continue reading on the following page: Compulsions: Causes.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Therapy for obsessive-compulsive disorder with obsessive-compulsive thoughts

If, after the diagnostic process described above, one comes to the conclusion that the distressing thoughts are Obsessive thoughts as part of a Obsessive-compulsive disorder various therapeutic methods can be used. In the foreground are the so-called Psychoeducation, the Cognitive therapy, the Exposure therapy, the Association splitting, the Psychodynamic Therapy as well as treatment with Medication.

Psychoeducation

The Psychoeducation is the first step in Treatment of obsessive-compulsive thoughts - And now you, as the person affected, are welcome to pat yourself vigorously on the shoulder, because you are already right in the middle of this treatment step. By “psychoeducation” one understands namely that Education of those affected - and if possible also their relatives - about the background and treatment options of the compulsions.

Why is psychoeducation so important for obsessive-compulsive thoughts?

At the beginning of treatment, especially in the case of obsessive-compulsive disorder with obsessive-compulsive thoughts, it is very important that the person affected is given detailed information about the causes and background of the obsessive-compulsive thoughts. Since obsessive thoughts often have aggressive, violent or sexual content, they are often very embarrassing for the sick. And the effort of those affected is correspondingly great to “get the obsessive thoughts under control” and “hide” them.

Unfortunately, in the course of their illness, people with obsessive-compulsive thoughts have mostly become true masters at hiding their obsessive-compulsive disorder from others - out of the fear of being considered crazy or a psychopath. And out of the fear that the “malicious” thought might get even more meaning when pronounced.

For many sufferers it can therefore be very important first of all that they learn that obsessive-compulsive thoughts are a relatively common problem that affects around 1% of the population strongly - and that obsessive-compulsive thoughts are a illness is something that can be treated, not a "personal weakness".

In addition to talking to a therapist, studying books on the subject can also be useful. "The Kobold in the Head" by Lee Baer is definitely recommended in this regard (more about the book ...).

Also taking part in a support group can be a valuable support for many sick people in order to be able to exchange information with other sufferers about the causes and treatment options of obsessive-compulsive disorder and to give each other help and support.

Cognitive therapy

The next step in treatment is what is called Cognitive therapy. Among other things, this is about identifying and changing the stressful thoughts and fears of those affected. For example, many obsessive-compulsive illnesses know fears such as "If I have to think about a certain act again and again, I will definitely put my thoughts into practice at some point!" or "If I have such bad ideas, I'm a bad person!".

In therapy, therefore, the “personal” stressful thoughts of the respective person are first worked out in order to then achieve a change towards more helpful thoughts after a critical review with the support of the therapist.

This may sound a bit “dry” in theory. Ultimately, however, cognitive therapy is an important tool with which those affected can independently influence their obsessive thoughts in the future.

Exposure therapy

An important element in the treatment of compulsions is what is called Exposure therapy, also Exposure training called. This is based on the knowledge that it is precisely the attempt to suppress thoughts that leads to them occurring more frequently.

You can easily test this phenomenon yourself if, for example, you decide once that you will NOT switch on for the next minute pink elephants to think . . . You may notice: the more you forbid yourself from thinking about this, the more pink elephants will start to haunt your head - although a few minutes ago you certainly did not think of such pink elephants. And now it can get difficult: The more I decide to suppress the thought of these elephants, the more ideas I suddenly have as to where any pachyderms could be hidden ... Are you really sure that there isn't a pink elephant in your bathroom ...? Or in the kitchen ...? - Hmmmm ... - Maybe I should have a look ...! You may notice: the more I plan NOT to think about something, the more my head revolves around these thoughts.

Something similar happens when trying to forbid obsessive thoughts: the more intense the ban, the more thoughts arise. Exposure therapy tries exactly the opposite step, namely to take the obsessive thoughts off their threat by dealing with them mentally and sometimes also in the real environment. Through this exposure, most of those affected are able to gradually remove the “threat” and thus also their significance from the obsessive thoughts, so that the thoughts can again and again fade into the background.

Very many people with compulsions initially have great fears of exposure therapy - Can't it be that this makes my compulsions worse ...? I want to get rid of my obsessions and now should I confront them on purpose ...? My thoughts are so horrible that I don't even want to think about them ...!

These objections and concerns of those affected are justified - and fortunately, unfounded. Exposure therapy is one of the best scientifically researched treatment methods in the therapy of obsessive-compulsive disorder and one of the few forms of therapy that can really reduce compulsions in the long term.

Association splitting

A newer therapeutic technique in the treatment of obsessive-compulsive thoughts is the so-called Association splitting based on S. Moritz and L. Jelinek from the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf. This technique is based on the observation that certain thoughts or associations are linked to one another by our brain without any further action on our part.

You can try this out for yourself again with an example: Just think of money, stocks, savings accounts, securities. If we now take the word “bank” next, your brain will probably first direct its thoughts to a corresponding financial institution and less to a park bench, tanning bed, corner bench or the like. With the words like “money” etc. we have established very specific associations for the term “bank”. It would have been completely different if we had used terms like park, trees, seats, etc. beforehand. With the latter, in his mind, your brain would have landed more on a park bench. The brain's idea of ​​the word “bank” can therefore be steered in a certain direction by certain associations.

Something similar can happen with obsessive thoughts: Certain “neutral” or “positive” cognitions - such as “driving a car” and “pedestrian” - can then easily be associated with threatening associations - such as “accident”, “death”, “guilt” etc. - linked. In the case of the person concerned, the mere idea of ​​encountering a pedestrian while driving can cause the brain to point its perception in the direction “I could have run over the pedestrian! I am guilty!" directs.

In the technique of splitting associations, an attempt is therefore made to break these unhealthy connections again and to give space again to the neutral or positive associations.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

What is behavior therapy for obsessive-compulsive thoughts?

Perhaps you've read that so called Behavior therapy as an effective therapeutic method in the treatment of the Obsessive thoughts applies. As behavior therapy - more precisely than Cognitive behavioral therapy, also Cognitive-behavioral therapy called - one understands the combination of the therapy methods of psychoeducation, cognitive therapy and exposure therapy just described.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Psychodynamic Therapy

Compulsions and obsessive thoughts often have their roots in earlier stressful life situations, which unconsciously can continue to have an influence on our thinking and experience. While the techniques described above are primarily aimed at achieving a change in the current situation, the aim is directed towards the Psychodynamic Therapy, also Depth psychological therapy called, among other things, on discovering and working on these unconscious processes.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

What drugs help with obsessive-compulsive thoughts?

In addition to the above-mentioned psychotherapeutic treatment methods, a Treating obsessive-compulsive thoughts with medication be useful. In particular, the so-called Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) used.

In Germany, among others, are the SSRI Fluoxetine, Fluvoxamine, Escitalopram and Paroxetine approved for drug treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder. It should be noted that the dosage of these drugs often has to be higher for severe obsessive-compulsive disorders than for depression treatment. It is also important to note that the SSRIs take up to 10 weeks to take effect, because many patients stop taking the medication after a few weeks because they do not yet feel any effect.

If the SSRIs do not work sufficiently or are not tolerated, a treatment attempt can be made, for example Clomipramine be performed.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

What therapy is best for obsessive-compulsive thoughts?

We are often confronted with the question of which therapy is “the best”. This question can be answered as follows: The "Best Therapy for Obsessive-Compulsive Thoughts" In most cases, it consists of one that is adapted to the individual clinical picture of those affected combination from the therapies just presented, because it is precisely through the use of the various treatment techniques that the best and most lasting successes can often be achieved.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

The bottom line: How do I get rid of my obsessive thoughts?

Here's another quick example: Imagine you would like to learn how to repair your car's engine. You can certainly try this all by yourself using information from books or the Internet. But it is easier if you also have an experienced auto mechanic show you how to do it.

As you can see, the same applies to obsessive-compulsive thoughts: Preferably not alone! Ask your family doctor that he will take you to an experienced one psychiatrist and to one Psychotherapists transfers. This is a bit time-consuming for you at first, but before the treatment of obsessive-compulsive thoughts can really begin, you must first find out together with the doctors what kind of compulsions actually exist, which mental impairments might have to be considered in therapy in addition to the compulsions , and which diseases hopefully do not exist.

This all takes time, but the correct diagnosis simply has to be at the beginning of the treatment so that you do not work long at the “wrong” point without achieving any results. Fortunately, if you compare it to the amount of time your obsessions “steal” from you in everyday life, then the visits to the doctor are fortunately only a small fraction of that.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

... and how long does it take?

A very legitimate question, but unfortunately difficult to answer because every person and every obsessive-compulsive symptom are different. If you imagine how long it has had time for your obsessive thoughts to "lodge" in your brain, you can imagine that it is not always easy to get rid of the obsessions.

Many people notice an initial improvement after taking the above medications for a few weeks to months. This can bring some initial relief and make everyday life a little easier again. Now comes the next, more difficult step: As part of psychotherapy, try to get the compulsions under control so that, in the long term, medication may no longer be necessary.

However, psychotherapy takes time: you will work out the causes of the compulsions in detail with your psychotherapist, you will learn how you can live without the obsessive thoughts and how you can cope with the fears that come with the compulsions. Fortunately you are no machinethat one easy reprogram could. Obsessive-compulsive thought therapy therefore takes time: time until life really feels “normal” again without the obsessions. Time until the changes have really established themselves in your everyday life. Time until the memories of the obsessions feel like a bad dream.

As you can see, we're talking about months and years rather than days and weeks. However, this does not mean that you will have to see a therapist every day for the next few years. Rather, the psychotherapists will work with you at the beginning of the therapy in weekly sessions to work out the most important basics of forced therapy. In the further course it is then primarily about that you also increasingly self-employed try to use what has been developed in therapy in everyday life. In the sessions with your therapist, you will then primarily discuss where there may have been problems in everyday life and what could still be changed. The psychotherapy will then take place at ever greater intervals so that you learn more and more that you can control the compulsions YOURSELF with your own forces and resources.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Read more ...



"The Leprechaun in Your Head: Taming Obsessive-Compulsive Thoughts"

The psychologist Lee Baer, a very experienced therapist in the field of obsessive-compulsive disorder, describes in "The Leprechaun in Your Head: The Taming of Obsessions" very clear how obsessive thoughts can arise and which therapeutic steps can be helpful.

The book also offers good help on how obsessive-compulsive thoughts can be differentiated from other illnesses such as depressive illnesses, PTSD, schizophrenia or “psychopathic” tendencies.

Overall, “The Goblin in the Head: The Taming of Obsessive-Compulsive Thoughts” is a book that can be recommended to anyone affected.

Read more: “The goblin in the head” - book review



"Getting free from obsessive-compulsive thoughts"

The Swiss psychologist Hansruedi Ambühl describes in "Getting free from obsessive-compulsive thoughts" in an understandable way the background of obsessive thoughts and thought compulsions as well as ways to help and self-help Ambühl then gives an insight into the therapeutic methods for treating obsessive-compulsive thoughts, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, exercises on mindfulness and drug treatment options, supplemented by many examples and practical application aids.

This book cannot and should not replace personal therapeutic advice, but it is a very useful addition for those affected and their relatives to better understand the phenomenon of obsessive-compulsive thoughts.

Read more: “Getting free from obsessive thoughts” - book review



"Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts"

Newly published: “Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts”. We have discovered a new “favorite book”! In “Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts” Sally Winston and Martin Seif first give a comprehensive insight into the background of the “troubling thoughts” (and despite the serious subject, allow a little wink and lightness every now and then, so that you can really read the book can read to the end ...).

In our opinion, this is followed by the most important section in this book: “Why nothing has worked”: An extensive presentation of the problems in dealing with the intrusive thoughts as well as the possible solutions.

Read more: “Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts” - book review

The book is also available as an eBook.


You can find more books on the subject of constraints in the chapter Constraints: books.

Please also note our Notes on the book reviews.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de

Advice centers in Rosenheim, Traunstein, Miesbach, Wasserburg, Munich and Salzburg

Addresses for advice centers for people with mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety etc., as well as addresses for family counseling, social counseling etc. in the districts Rosenheim, Traunstein, Miesbach as well as in the neighboring regions can be found in the chapter Advice centers:

Continue reading:
• Rosenheim
• Traunstein
• Wasserburg
• Miesbach
• Kufstein
• Salzburg
• Munich

Last update: 03.01.2021

Article authors: Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

This work is protected by copyright.

© Dr. Sandra Elze & Dr. Michael Elze

Prien am Chiemsee / Rosenheim, www.Dr-Elze.de