Coping and supportBy Mayo Clinic staff
Coping with obsessive-compulsive disorder can be challenging. Medications can have unwanted side effects, and you might feel angry or resentful about having a condition that can require long-term treatment. Here are some ways to help cope with OCD:
- Learn about obsessive-compulsive disorder. Education about your condition can empower you and motivate you to stick to your treatment plan.
- Join a support group. Support groups for people with OCD can help you reach out to others facing similar challenges.
- Stay focused on your goals. Recovery from OCD is an ongoing process. Stay motivated by keeping your recovery goals in mind. Remind yourself that you're responsible for managing your illness and working toward your goals.
- Find healthy outlets. Explore healthy ways to channel your energy, such as hobbies, exercise and recreational activities.
- Learn relaxation and stress management. Try such stress management techniques as meditation, muscle relaxation, deep breathing, yoga or tai chi.
- Structure your time. Plan your day and activities. Try to stay organized. You may find it helpful to make a list of daily tasks.
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder. In: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV-TR. 4th ed. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association; 2000. http://www.psychiatryonline.com. Accessed Oct. 4, 2010.
- Ciechanowski P, et al. Overview of obsessive-compulsive disorder. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Sept. 29, 2010.
- Hewlett WA. Obsessive-compulsive disorder. In: Ebert MH, et al. Current Diagnosis & Treatment: Psychiatry. 2nd ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw Hill Companies, Inc.; 2008. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=3286970. Accessed Oct. 4, 2010.
- Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association. http://www.psych.org/psych_pract/treatg/pg/prac_guide.cfm. Accessed Oct. 5, 2010.
- Stein DJ, et al. Obsessive-compulsive disorder: Diagnostic and treatment issues. Psychiatric Clinics of North America. 2009;32:665.
- Ward HE, et al. Update on deep brain stimulation for neuropsychiatric disorders. Neurobiology of Disease. 2010;38:346.