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HomeLifestyleHealthWhat is exposure and prevention? Therapist explains | Health

What is exposure and prevention? Therapist explains | Health

In Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), people struggle with repetitions. They feel obsessed and compelled to act in repetitions, sometimes making them go through anxiety and stress. Certain situations also act as triggers for them where they are not able to control their own behavior. One of the ways to combat OCD slowly and steadily is with Exposure and Prevention Therapy. In this process of therapy, people are slowly presented inside situations that can provoke them and trigger them, all the while making them feel that they are in a safe environment. This helps them to slowly face their triggers and find coping mechanisms to deal with daily situations. Therapist Maythal Eshaghian shared a small guide on Exposure and Prevention Therapy and how it can help people overcome their triggers.

What is exposure and prevention? Therapist explains(Shutterstock)
What is exposure and prevention? Therapist explains(Shutterstock)

Make the commitment: Committing to exposures is the difficult part when we have OCD. Exposure and Prevention therapy helps people slowly get accustomed to committing to exposures and building exposure hierarchy. Understanding which fight is worth fighting for helps us to choose how we should react and respond to the triggers.

Accept setbacks: Understanding that setbacks are a natural part of any kind of recovery helps us to learn from the setbacks and use the learning in the next step forward.

Engage in exposures daily: The regular practice of facing the exposures helps in rewiring the brain to embrace and accept uncertainty and understanding that sometimes the things we see as triggers are just part of the regular life. It helps us to develop our own coping mechanisms.

Spontaneous exposures: Exposing ourselves to spontaneous exposures helps us to understand the right way to respond. It also helps us to get more clarity on the values that we believe in and respond accordingly. When we get scared through an exposure, we do not learn much – but as we learn to navigate through them, we understand how triggers work and how we can cope with them.

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