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How is obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) treated in veterans?

Obsessive-compulsive disorder is a type of anxiety disorder, and anxiety disorders in general are treated with either psychotherapy, medication, or a combination of both. If you are a veteran with obsessive-compulsive disorder, the most recommended therapy is CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy). The cognitive part of CBT focuses on the patterns of thinking behind your fears, and the behavioral part works on changing how you react to the situations or triggers that create anxiety for you.

The type of medication most often prescribed for obsessive-compulsive disorder are the SSRIs, or serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Brand names of SSRIs include Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Celexa, and Lexapro. SSRIs relieve anxiety symptoms by blocking the reabsorption (reuptake) of serotonin in the brain. This makes more serotonin available in the brain, which improves your mood. The SSRIs drugs for OCD are sometimes prescribed in higher doses than for other anxiety disorders, which raises the risk of side effects. Some OCD patients can recover to a substantial degree without medication.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.