Tune in to our radio show on your local public radio station, or sign up for the podcast and listen at your leisure. Here’s what it’s about:
Washing your hands may be a good way to avoid catching colds, but when it gets out of control hand-washing can become an unhealthy compulsion. In fact, obsessions leading to compulsive behaviors such as hoarding, hair-pulling, checking and re-checking door locks or stove-top controls are common and debilitating.
Fortunately, obsessive-compulsive disorder can be treated successfully. Although medications can help, there are other strategies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, for overcoming OCD. Learn how to let go of worries and obsessions and master compulsions from one of the country’s leading experts in this field.
Guest: Reid Wilson, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and Director of the Anxiety Disorders Treatment Center in Chapel Hill and Durham, NC. He is Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. He is author of Don’t Panic: Taking Control of Anxiety Attacks, now in its third edition and Facing Panic: Self-Help for People with Panic Attacks, is co-author, with Dr. Edna Foa, of Stop Obsessing! How to Overcome Your Obsessions and Compulsions and is co-author of Achieving Comfortable Flight, a self-help package for the fearful flier. Dr. Wilson’s free self-help site for those suffering from anxiety: www.anxieties.com
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  1. Nathan
    Reply

    I am strongly in favor of digging deeper and taking longer to learn to deal with uncertainty, to the point of being biased. I agree with MCH.

  2. Dr. Reid Wilson
    Reply

    Julie- Of course, we don’t know what’s going on with this particular boy. But there doesn’t seem to be any significant correlations between diet/nutrition and OCD. On ther other hand, there is some association between OCD and eating disorders such as anorexia, in terms of ritualistic behavior, etc.

  3. Jule K.
    Reply

    In listening to the show, I was struck by the caller whose young son had obsessions about starving.
    Could there be a nutritional or dietary component to OCD?

  4. LDM
    Reply

    Had the pleasure of taking training in Chapel Hill a number of years ago with Dr. Wilson…I have used his teachings and materials since that time with many psychotherapy clients with various anxiety disorders…they work!
    I have also found it useful to combine his CBT methods with biofeedback for even more rapid resolution, particulary the eM Wave Trainer by Heartmath. My clients tell me that actually seeing the biofeedback display changing as they are doing breathing, muscle relaxation, and cognitive reframing is very powerful for them in producing a sense of control, one of the major objectives in the treatment of anxiety.
    The majority of my clients have responded satisfactorily without digging deeper into the origins of their problems; old stuff and conflicts, or the perception of them, is a target of cognitive restructuring and part of the CBT protocol.

  5. MCH
    Reply

    I have worked with people with OCD as a therapist. CBT works initially, and pieces of it are necessary but I have found that analysis of deeper emotional patterns are overlooked in CBT. Psychoanalysis keeps the person healthy over the long term, otherwise the anxiety resurfaces in other forms. His focus on tolerating uncertainty is right on target, but getting to it is a longer term process than CBT offers.

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