Coping with OCD can be challenging, but NAMI is here to provide support and information for you and your family.
Obsessive-compulsive disorders can make work, school, relationships, and other parts of life difficult. Reducing stress, eating well, and avoiding situations that trigger obsessions and compulsions can help you feel better. Some ways that can help include:
- Learn about obsessive-compulsive disorder Education about your condition can empower you and motivate you to stick to your treatment plan. NAMI Washtenaw County offers the Peer to Peer class where you can learn information about mental illnesses, treatments and self-care ideas.
- Join a support group Support groups can help you reach out to others facing similar challenges. Find out about NAMI Washtenaw County support groups.
- Focus on your goals Recovery is an ongoing process. Stay motivated by keeping your goals in mind.
- Stay busy With these disorders, it is easy to become completely absorbed in an activity or thought. Try to stay occupied with work, hobbies, fitness, or other activities. While staying busy is not always easy, simply doing other tasks helps keep your mind away from obsessions and compulsions.
- Find healthy outlets Regular exercise, eating a healthy diet and getting adequate sleep can have a positive effect on your treatment. Also, avoid drugs and alcohol: while they might temporarily reduce symptoms, they can make you feel worse over time. You should also let you doctor know about any other prescription or over-the-counter medications you take. These may interact with psychiatric medications and increase your symptoms.
- Know your triggers. Avoid situations you know bring on your symptoms. If you can’t avoid something, ask your mental health professional to help you find coping skills to deal with anything triggering. Try stress management techniques such as meditation, muscle relaxation, deep breathing, yoga, or tai chi.
If you live with a mental health condition, learn more about managing your mental health and finding the support you need.
Helping a Family Member or Friend
- Learn about various mental illnesses, their symptoms, treatments and how to manage life challenges because of them by taking the Family to Family course. Find out more at Family to Family, or call our office at 734-994-6611 for information or to register.
- Learn about the specific disorders Knowing the symptoms will help you understand the behaviors of your loved one and the difficulties they face. The International OCD Foundation is an excellent resource for information on the obsessive-compulsive spectrum, including information on hoarding, BDD and trichotillomania.
- Communicate Talk openly and honestly with your friend or family member if you have any questions or concerns. Make sure that your loved one is ready to talk, so that they are receptive to what you say and can tell you how they feel.
- Be patient. By showing patience you will show your loved one that you care and understand. This behavior will also allow your friend or family member to know that you can see beyond their diagnosis.
Find information about NAMI Washtenaw County support groups for people living with mental illness and those who care for them, and other local resources on this website, or call our office at 734-994-6611. To find out if there is a NAMI program or support group someplace near you nationally, or if you have any questions about dissociative disorders, contact the NAMI HelpLine at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or firstname.lastname@example.org.