Santa Monica Christian Counseling for OCD
Many people around the world suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder, but a large percentage of them don’t realize they have it. There are many symptoms of OCD that are common. For example, patients with OCD often find themselves going over past events over and over, analyzing their behavior, and they feel an uncontrollable sense of dread or panic if they don’t perform certain ritual behaviors. They may find their thought patterns to be overwhelming and cause debilitating anxiety. If this sounds like you, you may be suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder, but you’re not alone. Christian counseling is an effective way to overcome these difficult symptoms and take back control over your life.
Everyone feels trapped or overwhelmed by uncontrollable events at times –it’s a normal part of life. However, if you find that these feelings are ruling your every move, we’re here to help you. The counselors at Santa Monica Christian Counseling use a faith-based approach to help you find effective solutions for OCD symptoms using the power of God and Jesus Christ as a guide.
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How do I know if I have OCD?
Many people associate OCD with severe compulsive behaviors and emotions, but you might be surprised to hear that 2.5 percent of adults suffer from the disorder, and their symptoms are often relatively mild. To determine whether or not you might have OCD, consider the following questions.
- Do you feel compelled to count things or repeatedly check them for no reason?
- Do you have repetitive thoughts that you cannot put out of your head that are causing you stress or anxiety?
- Do you feel the need to wash your hands frequently or keep your space and possessions ordered in a specific way?
- Do you find yourself obsessing over things you feel you can’t explain to other people?
If you found yourself answering yes to most of these questions, there’s a chance you may have OCD and you owe it to yourself to seek more help. Everyone with OCD exhibits symptoms in a slightly different way, so regardless of how you are suffering, you can benefit from compassionate and supportive care. The counselors at Santa Monica Christian Counseling are here to work with you and find effective solutions that are appropriate for your lifestyle.
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What are the symptoms of OCD?
The symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder are divided into two categories – obsessions and compulsions. Obsessions are repetitive, uncontrollable thoughts that control behaviors and create a sense of fear and anxiety. Obsessions are often related to:
- A deep sense of perfectionism
- A need to stay clean and a fear of germs or sickness
- An obsession with the behavior and thoughts of others around you
- Constant fear of hurting yourself or hurting those around you
These are just a few common types of obsessions. Any repetitive and uncontrollable fixation can be classified as an obsession.
Compulsions, on the other hand, are rituals that people with OCD perform to cope with their obsessive thoughts. Some people have the same compulsions through their entire life, while others experience changing compulsions. Common compulsions include:
- Counting things or actions
- Obsessively washing yourself or the items around you
- Repetitively checking to make sure that something is in its place or has been done correctly
- Hoarding excess items
- Consistently reorganizing your personal space
Although these symptoms often present themselves in minor ways, they can have very serious negative effects on a person’s overall physical and mental health. Many people are scared to seek help with OCD because they are ashamed of the condition or afraid of what could happen. Santa Monica Christian Counseling provides a completely empathetic and compassionate space with no judgment where you can deal with your OCD symptoms in a way that is comfortable and appropriate for you.
Faith-based counseling for OCD
Our Christian OCD counseling services will help you feel safe and accepted while you work to overcome the challenges of this mental health condition. Seeking out Christ with an open heart and accepting God’s love are incredibly helpful when it comes to healing from the negative effects of OCD. The counselors at Santa Monica Christian Counseling are here to provide you with personalized faith-based counseling that supports your values and addresses your personal needs. In addition to using proven therapy methods, we also can support our patients with helpful prayer and Bible study techniques.
How does therapy cure OCD?
Secular scientists have said that there is no cure for OCD, but we take the approach that with faith, anything can happen. There are many effective treatments that have been proven to help manage OCD, and we aim to help you heal mentally and emotionally and live a happier, more comfortable life, whatever that means for you. We combine evidence-based therapy techniques with our faith to help treat your OCD in the most effective way possible. While everyone’s OCD is individual and follows a unique path, there are some benefits that every OCD sufferer can experience with the help of counseling. These include:
- A deeper understanding of your OCD behaviors, thoughts, and symptoms. When you understand your condition more thoroughly, you are better equipped to identify OCD behaviors when they happen and manage them appropriately. Understanding your OCD symptoms also makes it easier to communicate your experiences to others.
- A supportive space to work through your thoughts and feelings. Managing emotions is important for anyone, but it’s particularly crucial for those who are suffering from OCD. We provide a completely safe, non-judgmental space where you can share the way you’re feeling. No matter how strange or extreme it may seem, we want you to know that you are not alone. Working through your feelings with someone else is a great first step to personal growth and good mental health.
- Learning how to manage your symptoms. There are many techniques that we use to help you manage the symptoms you experience every day. You can overcome these challenges and live a normal life, and we provide you with the strategies and support to do that effectively. Just because you have OCD doesn’t mean you have to let your symptoms hold you back from living a full life.
- Dealing with OCD symptoms in your relationships. It can be hard for loved ones to understand your OCD symptoms, particularly if they are having a negative effect on your relationship. We help you learn how to effectively talk about your feelings and symptoms, as well as ways to cope when OCD gets in the way of relationships and social interaction.
We’re here to provide you with the help you need through the love and support of Christ. You are loved, and with support, you can improve your life and achieve your goals without OCD getting in the way.
What to expect in faith-based OCD counseling
Our faith enables us to offer a unique perspective on OCD for patients who also live by faith in Christ. If you suffer from faith-related OCD obsessions or compulsions, we can help you work through these in a non-judgmental way. For example, maybe you fear that God will punish you for your actions, or that if you don’t perform certain spiritual behaviors or prayers, He will not love you anymore. This is detrimental to your faith, and our counseling can help get you on the right track back to a healthy relationship with God and Christ.
For those who are of faith and suffering from OCD, it’s very important to find a counselor that walks in the light of God with you. You need the support and understanding of someone that will support your spiritual growth, instead of dismissing or downplaying your concerns the way some secular counselors might.
What happens in a Christian OCD counseling session?
There are many different ways to approach treatment and counseling for OCD. For the counselors at Santa Monica Christian Counseling, it is very important to us to approach each case in an individual, personalized way, because everyone’s needs are different. Many people with OCD also suffer from other mental health conditions, such as depression, and it’s important that your counseling plan addresses all aspects of your mental health. Our goals for all ofour clients with OCD are to help find effective ways to manage symptoms, work toward personal goals, and build strong relationships.
Our approach to OCD in Christian counseling is based on the cognitive behavioral style of therapy. In particular, we use something called exposure and response prevention. For this type of treatment, you can expect to:
- Identify your symptoms. Every OCD sufferer has unique compulsions and obsessions, so we’ll determine what your obsessions are, which compulsions you use to cope, and what activities you avoid in everyday life as a result
- Determine which things cause you the most anxiety and which things are more manageable. We’ll have you rank your obsessions and identify how often they bother you.
- Slowly try exposing yourself to your obsessions without using compulsions to cope. We’ll start slow, with the obsessions that bother you the least, and you’ll have guidance from the counselors every step of the way. Over time, you’ll work up to exposure to the obsessions that bother you the most. This repeated exposure will help you become more comfortable with your obsessions, and over time, you will be able to better manage your anxiety.
- Change your mindset and address any negative thoughts that cause OCD behaviors. We’ll identify the things that trigger your behaviors and help to change your perception of them.
Although counseling for OCD can be a tricky process, the Christian counselors at Santa Monica Christian Counseling are here to help you cope with these challenging issues. Our unique combination of evidence-based therapy and faith-based approach will help you lead a better life without the negative effects of OCD.
Christian OCD counseling for teens and children
OCD is a disorder that affects people of all ages, and many children and teenagers suffer from it. If you believe that your child suffers from OCD, our faith-based counseling can help. We use similar treatments for children that we use for adults, but modify them to be appropriate for their age and personal circumstances. In addition to using exposure and response prevention, we use another cognitive behavioral strategy known as cognitive restructuring. With cognitive restructuring, your child will be asked to talk about their OCD in a narrative format, creating a story that they can then use to modify their symptoms and eventually reduce their frequency.
We have counselors available at Santa Monica Christian Counseling that are familiar with the specific challenges of dealing with OCD in children. It’s very important to find a counselor that has experience with children so they can communicate with them appropriately. Children don’t yet know how to express their feelings and thoughts articulately, and even teenagers may be resistant to sharing how they truly feel for fear of judgment. At Santa Monica Christian Counseling, the counselors know how to address children’s feelings in a patient and kind way. Our environment is nurturing and compassionate and encourages children to connect with Christ and use their faith to support them in dealing with OCD.
Whether you, a family member or a friend suffers from OCD, Santa Monica Christian Consulting is here to help. With our professional, compassionate, and comfortable environment, you will be able to make progress in dealing with your OCD symptoms at your own pace, without fear of judgment. OCD is a common and treatable condition, and with our unique combination of a faith-based attitude and evidence-based techniques, you can live a comfortable, happy life, even with OCD.
Get Connected With a Christian Counselor
Contact Stacie at reception