Obsessive Compulsive Disorder was dismissed for centuries as a profound, crippling behavior. It seems that as we learn more about it, it seems more common.
The National Institute of Mental Health reports, “An estimated 1.2 of U.S. adults had OCD this past year.” It appears in females more than males and occurs with a lifetime prevalence of 2.3%.
Among the U.S. victims, 50.6% suffered serious impairment, 34.8% with moderate impairment, and 14.6% with mild impairment.
This amounts to 1 in 40 adults and 1 in 100 children with OCD, a condition that has puzzled physicians, psychiatrists, and neurologists resulting in varied diagnoses, prognoses, and therapies. And, for some time, there has been increasing interest in treating OCD with CBD (cannabidiol).
On the nature of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a mental health disorder that occurs when a person gets caught up in a cycle of obsessions and compulsions. According to the International OCD Foundation, “Obsessions are unwanted, intrusive thoughts, images or urges that trigger intensely distressing feelings. Compulsions are behaviors an individual engages in to attempt to get rid of the obsessions and/or decrease his or her distress.”
- Obsessions are intense, uncomfortable, and anxiety-ridden fixations on contamination, dirt, harm, fears, sexuality, religious scruples, superstitions, and more.
- Compulsions are repetitive thoughts and behaviors intended to neutralize or banish the obsessions. The repetitive actions may appear as excessive washing and cleaning, constant checking and rechecking, repeating bodily movements, acting in multiples, counting and self-correction, arranging and rearranging items, and more.
The causes of OCD
OCD occurs simultaneously with some other conditions like autism. That often makes diagnosis difficult and unspecific.
The fact that some OCD patients respond to Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRIs) medications indicate the disorder originates in human neurology. Because OCD also has a higher rate of occurrence among first-degree relatives, there may be a significant genetic component.
According to Psychology Today, care is moving from early childhood psychological environments to a research focus on “the interaction of neurobiological factors and environmental influences, as well as cognitive processes.” So, while early childhood physical or sexual trauma may lead to OCD, origins may more commonly lie in the roots of all anxiety disorders.
The only clear thing is that identifying and treating causes of OCD is complex and, sometimes, misdirected.
The routine care of OCD
Despite the difficulties in diagnosis and the unlikelihood of soon finding a cure, OCD has responded to psychotherapy and medications or a combination of the two:
- “Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a type of psychotherapy, is effective for many people with OCD” (MayoClinic) to manage your obsessions and compulsions.
- Certain psychiatric medications, often common antidepressants, can help control the obsessions and compulsions of OCD. Prescribed for specific ages, the FDA approves:
- Clomipramine (Anafranil)
- Fluoxetine (Prozac)
- Paroxetine (Paxil, Pexeva)
- Sertraline (Zoloft)
Hihg functioning patients can pursue self-care in support groups, improved diet, and relaxation and exercise routines.
On the nature of CBD
CBD (cannabidiol) is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis. It is the best known after THC, the one that triggers the psychoactive high after cannabis consumption.
THC binds to the same neurotransmitters affected by serotonin. The binding stabilizes the transmission to reduce depression and anxiety.
CBD works differently. Instead of binding to neuroreceptors, it runs interference with its entourage effect. For example, it reduces the body’s natural reabsorption of anandamide, the “bliss” molecule. By slowing or stopping its reabsorption, CBD allows it to flow and function.
Unfortunately, there has been very little research on what is clearly an open door for exploration. One study focused found inconclusive results in lab rodents, but FDA restrictions discourage the necessary work.
What we know about CBD
Anecdotal history and research success have shown the properties in CBD:
- Antiemetic (reduces nausea and vomiting)
- Anticonvulsant (suppresses seizure activity)
- Anxiolytic (combats anxiety)
- Analgesic (relieves pain)
And, to the extent that OCD is classified as a disorder characterized by anxiety and depression, CBD has treatment potential.
OCD creates a loop of intrusive perception and overt behavior. The more intrusive thoughts, the more compulsive behaviors. As they multiply, they strengthen the cycle. What CBD does for OCD is sooth panic. In OCD, panic follows an intrusive thought and leads to some automatically compulsive response. CBD potentially can reduce the response.
The routine care with CBD
OCD patients must know that CBD is available in many forms, so therapy can combine administrative forms.
- You might use 150mg of sublingual CBD oil as a routine therapy, titrating to a higher dosage if needed.
- You could take a 15mg Hemp Extract capsule on a regular basis
- You can also try our CBD-infused gummies, worms, pop bottles, or lollipops to help get you through the day.
Creating Better Days built its reputation on producing only pure and high-quality, USA-made hemp extract cbd products deliverable in all fifty states.