At the Cognitive Behavior Therapy Center of Silicon Valley, we offer cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for obsessive thoughts related to Self Harming OCD. Our approach is practical, goal-oriented, compassionate, and scientifically-based while focusing on your individual needs. We are located on the border of San Jose and Saratoga by Westgate Mall and serve the Silicon Valley communities of San Jose, Saratoga, Mountain View, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Los Gatos, Palo Alto, Los Altos, Cupertino, Campbell.
What is Self Harming OCD?
Self Harming OCD involves the excessive and irrational fear and doubt about whether you might lose control and hurt yourself or commit suicide even though the idea of harming or killing yourself is the last thing you want to do and you have absolutely no intention of acting on this thought. In order to deal with the anxiety this causes, you may find yourself constantly checking to ensure you haven’t harmed yourself, avoiding situations where harming yourself seems possible or asking others for reassurance that you have not or would not hurt yourself.
Symptoms of Self Harming OCD
- Fear that you will snap and injure yourself or commit suicide
- Fears of acting on disturbing or violent thoughts about suicide
- Fears of making a mistake and inadvertently hurting or killing yourself
- Checking your body for any signs that you have hurt yourself
- Hiding or locking up items that could be used to cause harm
- Avoiding people or places that trigger thoughts about death or self harming
- Asking others to confirm to you that they believe you would not do a horrible thing or to confirm that you did not hurt yourself and somehow fail to remember it
Cognitive Behavioral Model of Self Harming OCD
According to the CBT model, it is normal to experience intrusive thoughts about death or harm coming to yourself or someone else from time to time. However, if you have Self Harming OCD, you take these thoughts very seriously. You may believe if you have a thought about death or hurting yourself, then it must mean you want to hurt yourself and that you might act on this thought. For example, you may read a book about someone coping with suicidal thoughts, then have thoughts that you might want to commit suicide . Naturally, this thought is terrifying since you don’t want to hurt yourself. This causes you significant distress or anxiety. You may then attempt to soothe yourself with a ritual or compulsion that temporarily reduces your anxiety such as asking others for reassurance that you would not harm yourself or checking for any signs that you have caused harm or might cause harm to yourself. Because anxiety is relieved in the short-term, the anxiety cycle continues with the next intrusive thought.
Cognitive Behavior Treatment of Self Harming OCD
The goal of CBT for Self Harming OCD is to teach you that you can manage the anxiety associated with obsessive thoughts about harming yourself without performing checking compulsions or rituals. You will learn a type of CBT called Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). Treatment will include education about Self Harming OCD and how it is maintained, cognitive strategies that will help you respond differently to anxiety and intrusive thoughts, and behavioral strategies to help you delay and/or eliminate compulsive behaviors. ERP/CBT will help you face your fears about harming yourself, in session and in the real world, and practice new ways of responding to anxiety. With practice and experience facing your fears, you find yourself to be less disturbed by intrusive thoughts and more able to cope with anxiety and uncertainty.
How to Get Help for Self Harming OCD
The Cognitive Behavior Therapy Center of Silicon Valley is located at 1475 Saratoga Avenue on the border of San Jose and Saratoga by Westgate Mall. With our convenient location between highways 85 and 280, we serve the Silicon Valley communities of San Jose, Saratoga, Mountain View, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Los Gatos, Los Altos, Palo Alto, Cupertino and Campbell, CA. Contact us at (408) 384-8404 for more information on how we can help you manage your obsessive worry about harming yourself.
Serving the Silicon Valley communities of San Jose, Saratoga, Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Los Altos, Sunnyvale, Palo Alto and Santa Clara, CA
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