How A Pandemic Like COVID-19 Can Trigger OCD Symptoms

How A Pandemic Like COVID-19 Can Trigger OCD Symptoms

Wash your hands…

Practice safe social distancing…

Avoid crowded spaces…

By now, we all should be aware of the important safety recommendations and protocols established by the CDC. Staying informed and educated is an essential part of wellness – especially during a pandemic.

However, for those suffering from OCD, normal worries and anxieties surrounding COVID-19 can cause unwanted and distressing intrusive thoughts.

What’s Normal, What’s Not?

Of course, it’s normal for everyone to be a little more anxious these days. From the fear of contamination to the financial stress of the economy, anxiety is on the rise across our nation. But for someone with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, these stressors can trigger OCD symptoms.

For example, someone without OCD will likely add additional and thorough hand washing simply because they are following recommended advice. In this case, excessive hand washing is a normal and rational response to an established threat (COVID-19).

On the other hand, someone with OCD can have significant anxiety surrounding handwashing paired with intrusive thoughts that have an impact on their ability to function. OCD can cause those who suffer to worry about the fear of contamination which can lead to additional washing and cleaning or intrusive thoughts about passing the virus onto loved ones.

The truth is, the impact of COVID-19 might last long after the crisis passes. Uncertain times can lead to increased anxieties and fears making those with mental illnesses even more vulnerable.

Our COPE Centers Are Here For You

Antidepressants known as serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) have also been shown to be effective in treating OCD, although not FDA-approved, including Venlafaxine (Effexor) and Duloxetine (Cymbalta). Unfortunately, these medications can take eight to 12 weeks before a patient sees the full benefits.

Ketamine IV infusions are a cutting-edge treatment for difficult to treat cases of OCD. For people who don’t respond to first-line medications or psychotherapy, Ketamine can help. The best part about Ketamine is relief of symptoms can be felt after 24 hours of receiving the medication.

Ketamine is being used as a successful treatment for obsessive compulsive disorder. COPE offers Ketamine Treatment for obsessive compulsive disorder at our treatment centers in New York, Charlotte, St. Louis, Philadelphia, Houston. An intranasal formulation of esketamine (Spravato) is also available now. Contact COPE to learn more about whether you’re a candidate for Ketamine Treatment for obsessive compulsive disorder.

Our COPE supported centers are open we’re committed to assisting our patients during this challenging time through innovative treatments while following all current safety protocols.