Neurosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder: causes, symptoms and treatment. Neurosis of obsessive states in children
Probably everyone at least once in his life caught himself in a state where it is simply impossible to get rid of some thought. Sometimes it’s an attempt to remember someone’s name, sometimes it’s a disturbing thought: “Did I turn off the iron?”, Sometimes it’s a tied up line from a song.
But some people are literally captured by persistent thoughts or obsessions, and this disease state is called obsessive-compulsive disorder, or obsessive-compulsive neurosis.
The causes and methods of treatment of these pathologies will be discussed in this article.
Who is most prone to obsessive compulsive disorder?
As a rule, the neurosis that we will describe is formed in individuals who are indecisive and shy.They can only accomplish in their fantasies something that they cannot solve in real life.
Such people diligently avoid information about existing life problems, as the latter require actions that a person with a similar temperament is simply not capable of.
This causes him to isolate himself from reality, gradually “withdrawing into himself,” into his sensations and experiences. And over time, they begin to occupy the largest place in everyday life, displacing other interests and turning into a painful condition called neurosis.
How exactly the neurosis of obsessive states manifests itself, the symptoms, the treatment of this serious illness, we now consider in more detail.
What is the obsession
A person exposed to the described pathology, as a rule, is pursued by obsessive ideas and repetitive thoughts, the so-called obsessions. They, despite all attempts to ignore them or somehow resist their appearance, do not leave for a minute.
Neurosis of obsessive states, expressed by obsessions, in medicine differs in the degree of severity (clarity and brightness) of obsessive thought. So, a person with relatively vague obsessions can feel almost constant confusion or tension, which is accompanied by a common belief,that something good cannot appear in his life. In this case, as a rule, he does not have a clear idea of the reasons for such a belief.
And more intense obsessions are expressed by thoughts or ideas, for example, about the impending death of loved ones. Sometimes this is manifested in the belief that a higher power will necessarily harm either the obsession carrier himself or his relatives.
How can sexual obsession be expressed
Some people who have obsessive-compulsive disorder, whose treatment and causes we are experiencing, are experiencing sexual obsession. This condition may include obsessions with sexual overtones, to which the patient attaches special importance.
For example, he imagines caresses, kisses or sexual relations with strangers or loved ones, animals or children, causing a person with neurosis to develop an obsessive fear about his sexual orientation, doubts whether such compulsive images and thoughts could be prevented and consequence, self-criticism and self-hatred appear.
How does such a state develop
Interestingly, people with a diagnosis of obsessive neurosis tend to realize that their ideas are not true, but they feel an urgent need to act exactly as their ideas require.
Thus, a person who is subject to excessive hoarding, as a rule, treats matter as an animate being with its own rights and feelings, but at the same time he recognizes his behavior as irrational.
And with the development of neurosis, obsessive thoughts can also lead to the fallacy that it is pointless to resist them, then the person surrenders to his state completely.
What is compulsion
As mentioned above, people who have obsessive neurosis are aware of the irrationality of their ideas, and in order to counter them, they invent rituals designed to alleviate the anxiety caused by these thoughts. These obsessive actions are called compulsions. It is with their help that patients seem to be trying to avoid that terrible event, the thought of which does not give them peace.
But in any case, the reasoning of a person with neurosis is so peculiar and distorted that this usually leads to the appearance of significant problems both with the very carrier of the idea and with its environment.
This may be, for example, enhanced tweezing or pulling out hair, biting nails, endless washing of hands, closing and opening the door a certain number of times, removing and putting on some thing, unfolding objects in strict order, etc. And all this, of course however, it gives a lot of inconvenience and makes life very difficult.
But why do people end up in this state?
What is the basis of pathology
It should be immediately noted that in world medicine there is still no definite answer to the question of why people may experience obsessive-state syndrome.
Some scientists associate it with a genetic predisposition. So, perhaps compulsive behavior gave certain advantages to some of our distant ancestors. For example, sensitive storage of the home, constant maintenance of cleanliness, or readiness to meet with the enemies allowed people with these qualities to survive.
It has been scientifically proven that people with neurosis are most likely to have close relatives with the same conditions in the first relationship among family members. This applies primarily to those who have developed neurosis in childhood.
Biological causes of neurosis
Often, the state of neurosis is associated with dysfunction of the neurotransmitter serotonin, although, according to the researchers, this can be both a cause and a consequence of a similar pathology.
Serotonin is known to be involved in adjusting the level of anxiety. Obviously, serotonin receptors located on adjacent cells in patients with neurosis are not sufficiently stimulated, which causes the development of the described pathology over time.
So, the patient has an obsessive-compulsive disorder. How to get rid of this scourge? But before giving advice, it is worth considering in more detail how such a disorder is born.
How does the formation of neurosis
In each person there is a so-called “animal” or, in a different way, an unconscious beginning (all deep impulses and desires can be attributed to it). But, in addition, we also have the so-called “higher control”, which does not allow us to go beyond the generally accepted rules of behavior. Thus, all life in each individual there is an almost constant struggle between “I want” and “I must.”
This struggle for a certain type of people causes an increase in the level of anxiety - they begin to worry, feel discomfort, not finding an explanation for this.But our psyche is arranged in such a way that a person cannot be afraid of what is unknown, so he unknowingly chooses a suitable object on which to concentrate - the so-called “enemy”.
How does the "binding" in a painful situation
The patient begins to fear, for example, germs. At first, this brings visible relief - after all, now he knows what he is afraid of, which means that everything in his life is “laid out on the shelves,” he becomes more comfortable.
Now it is clear what to do! And in order to get rid of germs, he goes to wash his hands. And this action, unfortunately, draws him into a psychological trap, giving rise to obsessive-compulsive states, the symptoms of which are expressed by the fear of microbes. After all, compulsions (forced handwashing) brought a sense of control over the situation, but they did not get rid of the obsession - an obsession. And the patient will again and again go to wash her hands, adding to the ritual all the new details that will ease the condition for a short time.
How neurosis of obsessive states develops in children
Obsessive states can start at any age, but, as a rule, they are based on the experience brought from childhood.So, even the constant mother's threat: “Wash your hands or you will get sick,” may in the future develop into an obsessive desire to wash them countless times.
Often this neurosis develops in a child, whose upbringing is controversial. For the same thing, they can both punish and encourage him, depending on the mood of the parents, and the child in such a situation is not able to develop a stereotype of behavior. And the unpredictability of any situation is one of the reasons for the emergence of anxiety that requires an exit.
It is an attempt to predict what awaits him in the future, forcing the child to invent signs, rituals and develop their own script of action.
The same thing can happen in families, where as a result of, for example, divorce of the parents or the illness of some of them, an oppressive atmosphere develops. The child is not told about what is happening, but he feels that something is amiss is happening, and this is frightening, disturbing, forcing him to seek salvation in rituals.
Features of the course of neurosis in children
Neurosis of obsessive states in children is manifested both in the emotional sphere (the development of fears and phobias) and in the sphere of movements (rituals).There are many different variations and combinations of obsessions in different areas.
One thing unites them: a child, like an adult who suffers from the same disorder, treats them rather critically and diligently tries to deal with the fears that have seized him. But in this case, resistance leads only to increased anxiety and severity of neurosis.
Ways to treat neurosis
It alleviates the condition of the patient with obsessive-compulsive disorders, treatment: pills (tranquilizers, tricyclic antidepressants, etc.) and psychotherapeutic measures.
As a rule, preference is given to drugs that have a strong general effect, for example, derivatives of chlordiazepoxide (preparations “Napoton”, “Elenium”), as well as diazepam (preparations “Relanium”, “Sibazon” or “Seduxen”). Successfully applied and "Phenazepam". By the way, neurosis involves a higher dose of these funds than neurasthenia. To do this, they are often administered intravenously.
Pills Alprazolam, Alprox, Zoldak, Kassadan, Neurol and Frontin have also proven themselves well.
But cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy and psychocatalysis (a deep analysis of a person’s psychological state) are in the first place on how to treat obsessive-compulsive disorders.They help to detect and resolve internal conflict, to remove those causes that, in fact, led to a painful state of mind.
How to defeat obsessive neurosis? The method of exposure psychotherapy is one of the ways to combat neurosis. It is based on the fact that the patient will be less afraid of something if he becomes frequently and correctly exposed to it. For example, if a person is afraid of infection, then they suggest that they intentionally touch the door handle or handrails of the stairs and do not wash their hands afterwards. Patients with different types of disorders as a “homework” are offered to leave home without checking the “right” number of times whether the door is locked or to talk to a stranger, in a supermarket, etc.
This method helps the patient to discover something terrible that he was afraid all the time, and does not happen. Unwashed hands after touching the non-sterile surface do not cause immediate illness and, moreover, death, and the person with whom he spoke does not run away in horror.
In addition, anxiety, which, though intensified at the beginning of such actions, as a result, passes, and more quickly and more reliably than if the patient performed his ritual.
How to cure obsessive neurosis
The combination of medications for treatment and cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy makes it possible to reduce anxiety through drugs, which, in turn, makes it possible to extract the maximum benefit from psychotherapeutic interventions.
This is especially effective for people whose use of only exposure therapy leads to a too high level of anxiety.
It should also be remembered that the cure for obsessive neurosis does not exist. Only medications will not lead to deliverance from frustration, but only erase his picture. By the way, various side effects are also possible: nausea, insomnia, diarrhea, sexual dysfunctions, problems with concentration, etc. Another worrying factor is the possibility of the return of neurosis after stopping its treatment only in a medication.
Features of the treatment of neurosis in children and adolescents
Neurosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder treatment implies the same in both adults and children. But it is important to understand that the development of this disorder in a child is also based on specific problems characteristic of this age.And this complicates the process of treatment.
Children may have difficulty identifying and formulating their fears, and are sometimes unable to explain what motivates them to perform certain actions. Children often refuse to admit that the frightening idea is irrational and greatly exaggerated.
In addition, they sometimes refuse to discuss their problems with anyone, continuing to believe that fears and fears will come true, if we talk about them. Adolescents may be ashamed of the very idea of sharing experiences with a psychotherapist, for fear of condemning their peers and recognizing themselves as inferior.
It is therefore very important which specialist treats obsessive compulsive disorder. Parents should be sure to be interested in reviews about his competence and ability to work with children and teenagers.