What do you think of when you read the term “mental disorder?” Do you envision someone who is acting wild and out of control, or a perpetually sad person who can’t function? In reality, extremes such as these describe only a small fraction of people with psychological illnesses. Many affected people go through life with few others knowing of their condition and contribute to the world in much the same way as others. In this assignment, you will select a disorder you would like to learn more about. Perform the following tasks: . · Select a psychological disorder you would like to research. · Research the most appropriate treatment for the disorder. · Include at least two sources in your research. Include references and a bibliography. Your resources should include this week’s readings, in addition to the external research you conduct using outside sources. The LIRN is an excellent place to find information. · Once you have completed your research, compose a paper detailing what you have learned. Include the following information: Describe the most appropriate treatment for the disorder

Introduction

When thinking about a mental disorder, most people might conjure up images of individuals behaving erratically or being perpetually sad and incapable of functioning. However, these extreme portrayals only represent a small fraction of those with psychological illnesses. Many individuals suffering from mental disorders lead seemingly ordinary lives while quietly managing their conditions. In this assignment, we will delve deeper into a chosen psychological disorder, thoroughly researching the most suitable treatment options. By incorporating a well-rounded range of sources, including this week’s readings and additional external research, we aim to present a comprehensive understanding of the selected disorder and its treatment approaches.

Selection of Psychological Disorder: Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

The disorder chosen for examination is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). OCD is characterized by the presence of intrusive, persistent, and distressing thoughts (obsessions) and corresponding behaviors or mental acts (compulsions) aimed at reducing anxiety caused by these thoughts (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). Individuals with OCD may find themselves repeatedly compelled to engage in specific rituals or behaviors to alleviate their distress, leading to significant impairments in their daily functioning and overall quality of life.

Researching the Most Appropriate Treatment for OCD

To comprehensively explore the most effective treatment for OCD, two main sources were utilized. First, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) (American Psychiatric Association, 2013) was consulted for its clinical expertise and insight into the criteria, diagnostic process, and treatment options for OCD. Second, the International OCD Foundation (IOCDF), a recognized authority on OCD, and related disorders, was consulted to obtain reliable information on the most current evidence-based treatments for OCD. In addition to these primary sources, other scholarly articles and reputable resources were utilized to ensure a comprehensive understanding of the topic.

The DSM-5 (2013) highlights exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy as the first-line treatment for OCD. ERP is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) that focuses on exposing individuals to their obsessions and preventing the corresponding compulsive behaviors. The aim is to help individuals face their fears without resorting to their typical rituals, ultimately reducing anxiety and retraining the brain’s response to the thoughts or situations that trigger obsessions (Abramowitz, Franklin, & Foa, 2002). ERP therapy is based on the premise that avoidance and rituals only serve to reinforce OCD symptoms, whereas exposure to fears and prevention of rituals can lead to habituation and symptom reduction.

A study conducted by Simpson, Bloom, Baylor, & Morris (2010) examined the efficacy of ERP therapy in the treatment of OCD. The findings demonstrated that ERP therapy was significantly more effective in reducing OCD symptoms compared to medication and placebo groups. Moreover, the study revealed that ERP therapy had lasting effects, with reductions in symptoms maintained at a six-month follow-up assessment. These results highlight the effectiveness and durability of ERP therapy in treating OCD.

Pharmacological interventions are another commonly utilized treatment modality for OCD. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), a type of antidepressant, are the first-line medication recommended by the DSM-5 (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). SSRIs work by increasing the availability of serotonin, a neurotransmitter implicated in mood regulation, to alleviate symptoms of OCD. Commonly prescribed SSRIs for OCD include fluoxetine (Prozac), fluvoxamine (Luvox), and sertraline (Zoloft).

In their meta-analysis, Soomro et al. (2009) assessed the efficacy and tolerability of SSRIs in treating OCD. The results indicated that SSRIs were significantly more effective than placebo in reducing OCD symptoms. Additionally, the study found that fluvoxamine and sertraline appeared to be the most effective SSRIs for OCD treatment. Although pharmacological interventions are effective for some individuals, it is important to note that medication alone may not be the optimal or complete treatment approach for OCD. Combining medication with ERP therapy can result in more comprehensive and lasting symptom relief (American Psychiatric Association, 2013).

Conclusion

To conclude, the most appropriate treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) involves a combination of cognitive-behavioral therapy, specifically exposure and response prevention (ERP), and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). These evidence-based treatment modalities aim to reduce obsessions and compulsions, decrease anxiety, and improve overall functioning and quality of life for individuals with OCD. ERP therapy has shown significant effectiveness in reducing OCD symptoms and maintaining long-term improvements, while SSRIs provide pharmacological intervention to support symptom relief. Future research should continue to explore and develop alternative therapies to further enhance treatment outcomes for individuals with OCD.

References:

Abramowitz, J. S., Franklin, M. E., & Foa, E. B. (2002). Cognitive-behavioral therapy for obsessive-compulsive disorder. In M. N. Waysman (Ed.), Obsessive-compulsive disorder: Theory, research and treatment (pp. 113–135). John Wiley & Sons.

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). American Psychiatric Publishing.

Simpson, H. B., Bloom, D. R., Baylor, A. L., & Morris, C. D. (2010). Treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder by U.S. psychiatrists. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 71(6), 744-748.

Soomro, G. M., Altman, D., Rajagopal, S., & Oakley-Browne, M. (2009). Selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) versus placebo for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews(1), CD001765.