People with anxiety disorders tend to get anxious (okay, duh). They even worry about getting anxious after seeking treatment for their anxiety. Sometimes they go so far as to use this concern as an excuse for not seeking treatment in the first place. In other words they think, “Why bother getting treated if the problem is likely to make a swift return after I get treatment anyway?”
If you’ve had thoughts like these, I’d like to suggest you try rethinking your viewpoint. Treatment of anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder generally has enduring, positive effects. That’s especially the case if you obtain treatment based on cognitive behavior therapy that’s been specifically tailored for the type of anxiety or OCD you struggle with.
In fact, cognitive behavioral treatment for anxiety typically holds up far better than medication over the long haul. So even if you do take medication for anxiety or OCD, you now have one more reason to add cognitive behavior therapy to your regimen—the likely prevention of relapse as well as the possibility (for many) of successfully tapering off your medication at some point.
Nonetheless, relapse does happen. What should you do if it does? Here are a few thoughts:
So the bottom line is: Quit worrying about relapse. Get treatment; don’t expect total, miraculous results, and appreciate the fact that some anxiety is good for you.
Photo by Meg Wills, available under a Creative Commons attribution license.
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Best of Our Blogs: August 5, 2011 | World of Psychology (August 5, 2011)
Last reviewed: 3 Aug 2011