Hey guys I'm new here, and am looking for some support so please bear with me. I'm 19 years old, and am dealing with OCD, and anxiety as an offshoot form OCD. I guess I've been a little too worried about things in life since I was 10, but since I was 18, that's when I started to get intrusive thoughts.
My thoughts really stress me out, since I get thoughts that I might hurt someone, hurt myself, and stuff like that. It sucks more because I always obsess about my heart, and my intrusive thought are sometimes like, "well if you don't hurt yourself, your heart rate won't slow down." Now, I know those are thoughts, and that they wont come true. I don't hear voices, I know these are my minds own thoughts.
It really stresses me out though and scares me, because I am afraid that I might snap one day and give in to my thoughts. I've never had an urge to hurt anyone or myself, so as you can tell these thoughts really bother me. My counselor says I wont snap and give into my thoughts, and deep inside I know I wont give into my thoughts. But as with OCD, when I get my thoughts, and I know that I wont do them ever, the obsessive part is what screws with me, because as you guys know, with OCD, it's like i can rationalize the thoughts are just thoughts, and wont come true, yet I still obsess about them to the point where it makes me feel like I'm going crazy, even though I know I'm not.
When I get really stressed over them, I don't drive because of fear that I might try to hurt someone while driving. And I don't like going in public sometimes because if I get my intrusive thoughts, like say i get a thought that's like "if I don't hurt something my heart rate wont go down" then it really stresses me and sometimes will give me a panic attack. That's where I get scared that what if I snap during a panic attack, but deep inside I know it's my thought and I wont do it. I NEVER would do any of these things, but as I said before, it's the obsessive part of me that interferes.
I have been seeing my counselor for about 1 year, I see her once every 2 weeks. I have also been on an SSRI, fluoxetine to be exact for about 8 months. Although the fluoxetine has helped, I'm still getting intrusive thoughts, so my counselor recommended I see a nurse practitioner to either get something added to the fluoxetine, or get a new med.
I am willing to try some new meds, but I have a few apprehensions about some. First off, I DO NOT want to use any type of anti psychotic. Those things have way too many side effects, those are a powerful drug.
My doctor did prescribe me a small dose of Xanax, to take as needed, say during a panic attack or something. I've had them for months, although I've never taken one, because I wanna beat my OCD with the least medication as possible. And I don't want to build up the tolerance to Xanax and have a withdrawal from it like most people get when they've been on them a while.
So point being, I need some suggestions on how to handle this better. My counselor told me to do some exposure therapy, which helps. Like I can drive more now, and go to anxiety provoking situations with less anxiety. Me and her also do cognitive behavioral therapy, and that helps as well. I also distract myself with books, tv and other activities. But point being, I still get intrusive thoughts, so I still need suggestions on more ways to manage them, or what medications would help more.
I am also open to any type of natural remedy for OCD. I just don't want any anti psychotic, or become dependent on Xanax.
I just want to handle my OCD. Some people say it's curable, others say no. I don't know which is true, but I just want to manage it so it's not debilitating. I'm only 19, and sometimes get scared that my OCD will kill me early or something, even though I know it wont. It's just when I get my thoughts, I get depressed that I cant do stuff like hiking or stuff like that because my OCD, so that's what makes me feel like there's no hope. But deep inside, I know there's hope. It just takes patience, even my counselor said I will get over this someday. It's just that when you have OCD, every day seems like a mental overload so it may seem like there's not hope. But anyway, thank you for reading this long post. Your replies and suggestions to my quesitons will be greatly appreciated. Thanks