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How can I manage my OCD behaviour?

Q: I am 17 years old suffering from obsessive compulsive disorder. I am just going to appear for my board exams. The problem is that I constantly keep checking my papers, and even after submitting the paper I keep getting negative thoughts, like I have cancelled my answer or done something wrong. Though these things don't happen in reality I keep thinking about them. I also worry about my health too much. I keep checking things that I have done and constantly ask my friends if I have done them properly. Three months back I was severely depressed, but now I have improved a lot. Since last week I am taking Fludac. How do I get rid of these recurring negative thoughts? It is affecting my studies a lot.

A:There are two approaches to the best treatment available today for obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). One is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) medication, such as those known in the United States as Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Celexa, and others and as Fludac or Fluxal in India; the SSRIs are anti-depressants with some anti-anxiety effects, and the dose for OCD is higher than the dose of the same drug when used to treat depression. The second effective treatment is cognitive behavioural psychological treatment, which must be provided by a mental health professional specially trained to use this technique for OCD patients. This treatment takes longer than medication, requires hard work on the part of the patient, and can provide more lasting improvement. Finally, the two treatments can be combined. And yes, obsessions and compulsions, when not treated, can have a negative effect on studies, work, and social relations.

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