New OCD Treatment in Noblesville Provides Rapid Relief for Patients
Over the past century, treatments for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) have rapidly evolved. Clinicians classified OCD as a distinct anxiety disorder in the early 1900s. Since then, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and antidepressants like tricyclics and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) have become mainstream therapy. However, this treatment is effective in only 40% to 50% of patients.
New research suggests that medically-supervised ketamine infusion therapy could help relieve a significant proportion of people with OCD. Ketamine therapy can be a life-changing experience with one infusion. In some trials, ketamine therapy led to an immediate recession in OCD symptoms.
What Are the Symptoms of OCD?
OCD is not always easy to spot. Many factors contribute to and complicate OCD, such as genetics, personal and family history, and current situation, but some common signs to watch for are:
- Fear of contamination or dirt
- Doubting and having difficulty tolerating uncertainty
- Needing things orderly and symmetrical
- Disturbing thoughts about lack of agency and harming yourself or others
- Unwanted thoughts that may deal with unpleasant subjects
- Handwashing until your skin becomes raw
- Checking doors repeatedly to make sure they’re locked
- Checking the stove repeatedly to make sure it’s off
- Counting in certain patterns
- Silently repeating a prayer, word, or phrase
- Arranging your canned goods to face the same way
5 Symptom Subtypes of OCD
Although OCD symptoms generally fall into one of these five subtypes, it is possible to undergo changes in the nature and focus of OCD symptoms over time.
- Contamination Obsessions with Washing/Cleaning: Those suffering from this symptom subtype tend to ruminate on feelings of discomfort associated with germs/contamination and will wash and clean excessively.
- Harm Obsessions with Checking Compulsions: Those experiencing this symptom subtype will often have intense thoughts regarding possible harm, either to themselves or others, and will use checking rituals to relieve their distress.
- Obsessions Without Visible Compulsions: Those experiencing this symptom subtype will often have unwanted obsessions regarding sexual, religious, or aggressive themes. Triggers related to these obsessions are usually avoided at all costs.
- Symmetry Obsessions with Ordering, Arranging, and Counting Compulsions: Those suffering from this symptom subtype may need to rearrange objects constantly. It can also involve thinking or saying sentences or words repeatedly until one feels it has been accomplished perfectly.
- Hoarding: This symptom subtype involves the collection of items of little or no value until one’s living space is consumed with so much clutter it becomes nearly uninhabitable. This behavior is often sparked by obsessive fears of losing items one feels may be needed one day.
Some factors that may increase the risk of triggering OCD may include:
- Family history. Family members with the disorder can increase your risk of developing OCD.
- Stressful life events. This reaction may sometimes trigger the intrusive thoughts, rituals, and emotional distress associated with OCD.
- Other mental health disorders include anxiety, depression, and substance abuse disorders.
There is no single way to prevent OCD. Seeking treatment as soon as possible can prevent OCD from becoming more severe. Some people with previously treatment-resistant OCD have experienced great success with ketamine infusions, an innovative new treatment option.
How Does Ketamine Help Treat OCD?
Exactly how ketamine treats OCD and other mental health disorders is still under investigation. Recent evidence points to ketamine’s inhibitory effects on the NMDA receptor in the lateral habenula. The lateral habenula is a brain region primarily responsible for encoding negative rewards or anti-reward cause-and-effect relationships. Those with OCD show an abnormal regulation of glutamate. As a non-competitive NMDA antagonist, ketamine prevents glutamate from activating the NMDA receptor.
The inhibition of the NMDA receptor may cause a build-up of free glutamate, which then activates the AMPA receptors. When surplus glutamate activates the AMPA receptor, it releases a brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) chemical. BDNF, in interaction with the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), promotes new neural growth. This new growth may reroute the brain from hyperactive areas associated with negative reward signals, thereby providing long-term relief from mental health conditions.
Is Ketamine Right for You?
OCD can take hours out of your day, leaving you with less time for yourself and your loved ones. We’d like to give you that time back. K Therapeutics and Wellness mental health service is revolutionizing how Central Indiana residents manage symptoms of OCD and other treatment-resistant conditions. If you or someone you love suffers from OCD, contact us today to learn how ketamine therapy can help!
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