Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is generally a condition caused by irrational thoughts. In search for possible ways to control these thoughts, people are seriously considering hypnotherapy to treat the symptoms of OCD.
However, the truth is, OCD occurs in three separate levels: birthing of the thought, compulsion to do the thought and the actual performance of the compulsion. OCD experts believe that only the last two stages are controllable, while the first level remains untouchable. Therefore, essentially, Hypnotherapy in the context of OCD is only similar to Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy.
In the other hand, hypnotherapy in itself is all about the reconditioning of the subconscious mind. Usually, our subconsiousness adheres to many things it feel is necessary for us, though by logic is not. These kinds of thoughts can be removed by hypnosis because of its preferential nature. However, when it comes to OCD, the thoughts are not generated by preference. It is a product of an abnormal signal transmitted by the neurotransmitters in brain due to biochemical imbalance. And this is not something that can be worked out by mental conditioning alone.
While hypnosis cannot be an all-out cure for OCD, it can be used as a tool to convince sufferers that they have OCD. Acceptance of the disorder is the first step to treatment because only then that the sufferer will become open to doing ritual neutralizing activities which is the core of Cognitive-behavioral Therapy. Such neutralizing activities are recommended to sufferers as substitute to the ritual that they feel they have to do in order to cope with the anxiety brought about by the recurring fearful thoughts such as being bedridden due to a disease caught by not rubbing alcohol to a doorknob twelve times before touching or by being killed by a robber if the door is not closed in the right manner and if it is not checked 10 times before being convinced that no one can actually break through it.
By knowing and accepting that OCD is present, a sufferer gets more incentive in listening to his therapist to confront his or her fears and chooses this confrontation rather than doing the ritual that he or she believes will stop the materialization of the fear. This might be a very difficult process, but some hypnotherapists believe that with the use of hypnosis, it will be easier to convince the sufferer that the fears are irrational and that it is not likely to happen just because of not doing the ritual. Through constructive suggestions, the hypnotherapist can make the sufferer realize that confronting the fear is not at all life threatening and that it is a better option than to live his or her entire life trying to cope with the fear by doing OCD rituals.
OCD sufferers must always remember though, that recovery from OCD cannot be depended on other people or mere medications. OCD is bred in the mind therefore it can only be countered with the cooperation of the mind as well. Acceptance of the disorder comes first and everything else is secondary.
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