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7 Things To Remember If Your Loved Ones Suffer From OCD

7 Things To Remember If Your Loved Ones Suffer From OCD

Having an Obsessive – Compulsive Disorder is really hard and stressful. How can I say so? Because I have OCD myself. Life is hard, but uncontrollable, just like this disorder, as much as we want to control and to prevent it, but sadly I have to say, we can’t. Below are 7 things to remember if your loved ones suffer from OCD.

1. They don’t want immediate negative criticisms or comments.

This is really the most powerful tip I have. Whenever persons with OCD receive criticisms, they really feel down.

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Instead of helping us to make better our behavior, criticism makes it worse. This is because they usually feel unworthy if they did something imperfectly. Normally, people will accept criticism as a way to become better. But people with OCD need a positive environment rather than being surrounded with critics.

2. They do want to be corrected, but in the nicest way possible.

In relation to the first point, whenever a person with OCD hears someone telling them that they did wrong, they interpret it worse than it was meant. Well, of course, you can correct them, but not by shouting at them or pointing fingers. It’s better to tell them in a calm and soothing manner rather in a nagging or scolding way.

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3. They need your extreme patience.

Kindness and patience is one of OCD’s biggest demands. People with OCD need to feel that they don’t have to worry or be so anxious about something. Never ever make them feel like they annoy you. As much as they want to control it, unfortunately, they can’t.

4. They have uncontrollable and compelled rituals.

As much as possible, try to stop them in a calming, peaceful, soothing manner. Try to tell them in a nice way that there are other things that they might like to do instead of what they are repeatedly doing.

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5. They know that their urges are uncontrollable.

People with OCD really need the support of their loved ones. As much as possible, don’t try to stop them from what they need to do. Rather, invite them to a short and quiet talk as a family. A person with OCD needs to feel that you do accept them and you that know how much they are struggling because of their disorder.

6. They sometimes find their OCD humorous.

Having an OCD is never a funny issue. But there are people who can laugh at it and this makes them feel better. For me, having this disorder is often funny and I just usually ignore and enjoy it in some ways. But this depends on the person and if he or she finds it really humorous or not. Be sensitive about it.

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7. They need support, not judgment.

This is one of the most important things to remember. There are times that the OCD swallow up the normal way of thinking about things since a person with OCD does have the tendency to think too much and to feel guilty for things her or she didn’t do.

In general, having an OCD is a big struggle. But then again, OCD is a part of many person’s lifes and they can’t avoid it.

You may ask: Why do people have this disorder? There are a lot of theories. But no one can name the exact cause of OCD. What you have to remember is that no matter how much this disorder distracts and prevents people from thinking logical, each person with OCD has his or her own ways to manage it. They just need your support and positive communication.

Featured photo credit: Ian Caldo via flic.kr

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Last Updated on June 24, 2019

Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

A study [1] published in Depression and Anxiety found that social media users are more likely to be depressed. This was just one of the huge number of studies linking social media and depression[2] . But why exactly do platforms like Facebook and Instagram make people so unhappy? Well, we don’t know yet for sure, but there are some explanations.

Social Media Could Lead to Depression

Depression is a serious medical condition that affects how you think, feel, and behave. Social media may lead to depression in predisposed individuals or make existing symptoms of depression[3] worse explains[4] the study above’s senior author Dr. Brian Primack. So, the problem may not be in social media per se, but how we use it.

Signs You’re Suffering From “Social Media Depression”

If you feel like social media is having a negative impact on your mood, then you may be suffering from “social media depression.” Look for symptoms like:

• low self-esteem,

• negative self-talk,

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• a low mood,

• irritability,

• a lack of interest in activities once enjoyed,

• and social withdrawal.

If you’ve had these symptoms for more than two weeks and if this is how you feel most of the time, then you are likely depressed. Although “social media depression “is not a term recognized in the medical setting, social media depression seems to be a real phenomenon affecting around 50% of social media users. As explained in a review study[5] published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, if a person has a certain predisposition to depression and other mental disorders, social media use may only worsen their mental health.

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Social Media Could Crush Self-Esteem

We know that social media and depression are in some way linked, but why is this so? Well, according to Igor Pantic, MD, Ph.D.[6], social media use skews your perception about other people’s lives and traits. To explain this further, most people like to portray an idealized image of their lives, personal traits, and appearance on sites like Facebook and Instagram. If you confuse this idealized image with reality, you may be under the false impression that everyone is better than you which can crush your self-esteem and lead to depression. This is especially true for teens and young adults who are more likely to compare themselves to others. If you already suffer from low self-esteem, the illusion that everyone has it better off than you will just make you feel worse.

Causing Social Isolation and Other Negative Emotions

Another commonly cited reason for the negative impact of social media on mental health is its link with social isolation. Depressed people are more likely to isolate themselves socially and chose only to interact indirectly through social media platforms. But communication online tends to be superficial and is lacking when compared to real-life interaction explains Panic. What this means is not that social media leads to isolation but the other way around, possibly explaining why we find so many depressed persons on these sites.

Lastly, social media use may generate negative emotions in you like envy, jealousy, dislike, loneliness, and many others and this may worsen your depressive symptoms.

Why We Need to Take This Seriously

Both depression and social media use are on the rise according to epidemiological studies. Since each one has an impact on the other, we have to start thinking of healthier ways to use social media. Teens and young adults are especially vulnerable to the negative impact of social media on mental health.

Advice on Social Media Use

Although these findings did not provide any cause-effect explanation regarding Facebook and depression[7], they still do prove that social media use may not be a good way to handle depression. For this reason, the leading authors of these studies gave some suggestions as to how clinicians and people can make use of such findings.

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One suggestion is that clinicians should ask patients about their social media habits. Then they can advise them on how to change their outlook on social media use or even suggest limiting their time spent on social media.

Some social media users may also exhibit addictive behavior; they may spend too much time due to compulsive urges. Any compulsive behavior is bound to lead to feelings of guilt which can worsen depressive symptoms.

Having Unhealthy Relationship with Social Media

If you feel like your relationship with social media is unhealthy, then consider the advice on healthy social media use provided by psychology experts from Links Psychology[8]:

Avoid negative social comparison – always keep in mind that how people portray themselves and their lives on social media is not a realistic picture, but rather an idealized one. Also, avoid comparing yourself to others because this behavior can lead to negative self-talk.

Remember that social media is not a replacement for real life – Social media is great for staying in touch and having fun, but it should never replace real-world interactions.

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Avoid releasing personal information – For your safety and privacy, make sure to be careful with what you post online.

Report users who bully and harass you – It’s easy to be a bully in the anonymous and distant world of social media. Don’t take such offense personally and report those who abuse social media to harass others.

The bits of advice listed above can help you establish a healthy relationship with social media. Always keep these things in mind to avoid losing an objective perspective of what social media is and how it is different from real life. If you are currently suffering from depression, talk to your doctor about what is bothering you so that you can get the treatment you need to get better. Tell your doctor about your social media use and see if they could give you some advice on this topic.

Reference

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