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Amen Clinics: Your Stories – Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Like many OCD patients, Ryan Davenport first noticed his symptoms during childhood. On the eve of his 20th birthday, Ryan realized that his symptoms were taking a turn for the worse. It was then that he and his father made the decision to come to Amen Clinics. Under the vigilant care of Dr. Larry Momaya, Ryan was able to take the steps necessary to steadily bring his life back into focus.

What is OCSD?

Obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders (OCSD), commonly referred to as “OCD,” are serious and often debilitating disorders that are characterized by obsessions and compulsions.

Obsessions are recurrent thoughts, impulses, or images, which are intrusive, usually senseless, sometimes frightening and often repulsive. They are sneaky and may involve repetitive thoughts of:

• Contamination
• Worry
• Doubt
• Sexuality
• Unacceptable religious thoughts
• Violence

Compulsions are behaviors that are performed persistently and repetitively without leading to an actual reward or pleasure. Often, compulsions are an attempt to make obsessions go away and to reduce the anxiety caused by the obsessions. There is an urgent insistent sense of “I have to do it” inside.

Compulsions are often performed according to certain rules in a very strict or rigid manner and can result in elaborate rituals. The most common compulsions include:

• Rituals
• Hand-washing
• Counting
• Checking
• Touching (especially in a particular sequence)
• Picking skin or hair
• Other behaviors that feel necessary to do

The course of OCSD is quite varied. Symptoms may come and go, ease over time, or get worse. If the symptoms become severe, OCSD can keep a person from working or carrying out normal responsibilities at home.

Why We Are Different And How We Can Help People With OCSD?

OCSD, like many other conditions, is not just a single and simple disorder; therefore, treatment is not a one-size-fits-all solution. It is imperative to find out what is causing the symptoms you are experiencing and treat the underlying cause, rather than just trying to fix the symptoms. If we don’t look at the brain, how do we know exactly what we’re treating?

OCSD is an intricate and often misunderstood condition; Amen Clinics can help decipher the right treatments and protocols. If you would like to learn more, please visit us online or call 888-288-9834 today.

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COMMENTS

  1. Sharon Blanton says:

    I feel very happy for Ryan, however for others who have been fighting with OCD manifestations for decades may not be able to afford an Amen Clinic. I am sure that the clinic works wonders, but it is also sad that many persons will never have the opportunity to have threatment for OCD, other than medication.

    • Helen Mcandrews says:

      That is so true, very limited treatment programs. The family members need support as adult ocd sufferers are uncooperative.

    • Bev says:

      I agree with you. Also locating a good place and getting them to agree to go are problematic here in Canada. It is so sad. All the best.

    • Wade Wright says:

      I agree. Amen Clinic has good assessment vehicles and products, but they are very expensive and are designed purely for the wealthy. Their markets are high income areas and their elitist, dismissal and smug customer service attitude are less than desirable. Good luck getting a call back if you’re experiencing any issues. I believe that their concern is more about taking your money than getting you well. There are other healthy alternatives and my hope is that a capitalist can see this huge gap that exists in helping middle and lower income America as well with proper follow up protocol. Mr. Amen and his wife look great on the camera and internet, but it is primarily a facade.

      • Michelle Fredrickson says:

        I couldn’t agree with you more. I have three of my seven children have severe OCD and ADD. Plus depression. I have spent my entire retirement trying to save them from suicide. There really is no help!!! unless you are wealthy. They just passed a legislation here in Utah, you can now have your family member commited for treatment of severe drug addiction due to mental illness. Even if they don’t cooperate, but the catch is you have to be able to pay for the treatment!

  2. Mary says:

    Does the clinic have any online treatments,, Live in Montreal Canada

  3. Kay says:

    I totally agree with Sharon Blanton. There are not enough clinics/doctors that are willing to treat patients. The “almighty pill” is the poor substitute for the care that’s desperately need it. I truly hope that the Amen Clinics/treatment centers will expand and become affordable for all.

    • R.H. says:

      (Former Amen Clinic Client/Clinic Patient) way back when (about 1997) After Dr. Amen started etc..) Anyway/how etc… I agree with Kay and others more doctors, clinics and locations…. And yes l live and the NY area and aware of the locations, other clinics, and so forth. “Amen”

      • USASusie says:

        R.H. – I am curious – did you find your time at Amen helpful? I have read so many reviews both positive and negative.

  4. Disappointed says:

    I completely agree. I do not think I will continue to subscribe to the Amen emails, because those I work with cannot afford to go to the Amen clinic. As a result, I do not have a way to refer them to resources or helpful information they can use.

    • Teresa jones says:

      I’m sorry you feel down and that You need to unsubscribe.. I do hope you realize Dr Amen has many helpful books out currently and that they could be in your price range and possibly be if assistance to you

  5. Currently in the US between the onset of symptoms of OCD and an accurate diagnosis and treatment approximately 10 years goes by. How much development is interfered with during that amount of time is incalculable. As the above writer points out not everyone can afford an Amen clinic however the mental health system in this country has become medications only for the majority of patients. OCD takes what our system does not provide and that is time and a relationship with a well trained clinician in treating OCD. Good for Ryan that he had the means and found someone who knew what they were doing as sadly this is the exception, not the rule in US mental health care for OCD.

  6. Sally Brock says:

    I was fortunate enough to be tested at the Amen Clinic and have also done research
    on my own to find other resources to help and treat OCD and other related disorders.
    The OCD Center of Los Angles offers many options including online treatment. I have found that online support groups are great to find out what other people are doing to
    help their symptomsSally .

  7. linda says:

    I have had OCD since it was originally given its name by Yale in the mid eighties. I went to Yale and it was confirmed I have OCD. Mine manifests itself by my being a compulsive cleaner.
    I started on medications for OCD in 1987 and have been on them since. I am probably now addicted to them. I tried going off them a couple of different times and find that my whole personality changes when off them. Off the meds, I am a very angry person, so I guess they are helping me with my anger issues.
    As far as the cleaning goes, I still clean compulsively. I can not wake up one day without my mind thinking, almost immediately upon waking, what can I clean today? It is horrible!! This disorder has affected my whole life. I have an accounting degree and was employed as an accountant but eventually I had to give up my profession because my OCD interfered with my job.
    I feel my whole life has been compromised by this disorder and I have not been a malcontent all of my life.
    I wish I could get help, but I cannot afford to pay for years of therapy. The many times I did go, I was just medicated, hoping this would do the trick. Of course, it did not.
    Have you any suggestions?
    My email address is: lindalane124@optonline.net

  8. Andrea Kutchey says:

    Why is Amen clinic so expensive???? If they lowered
    the rate by half they would get so many more people.
    Dr Amen makes a lot of money on supplements , books , speaking etc etc etc when is enough enough?
    Even if I could afford it I question if I want to see someone so concerned about make making money rather than just helping people at a reasonable cost.

  9. Ryan Davenport says:

    Hello, I’m Ryan Davenport from the video. Thank you all for your happiness for me in my recovery. I am writing because I want to give more information to you on how I recovered. I also want to offer more hope to those that have little (it’s the reason I wanted to do the interview video in the first place). Please know that this video was made only about a month and half after my recovery began. I was still re-acquainting myself with words and I am afraid that perhaps I did not express myself well enough. In addition to OCD, I also suffered from depression and anxiety. While Amen Clinics do offer many routes to recovery, including therapy sessions, I actually did recover thanks to pharmaceutical medication, which I am still and always will be taking. The most helpful thing in the road to recovery was the gentle guidance of Dr Momaya and the irrefutable evidence presented by the SPECT scan that indeed I did have all three conditions. I knew I had OCD, but I was in denial about the depression and anxiety. This denial was the primary reason that I was at one time opposed to taking medication. With proof of the internal workings of my brain as explained by Dr Momaya, instead of simply the observations of a regular doctor who saw me for a short time and had little evidence to back up their claims, I was able to decide that medicine, of some kind was the way to get better. We started with the natural products offered by Amen Clinics, which did help, but it was ultimately not enough in my individual case. Before settling on my current medicines, we went through at least three different medication plans, which were also not enough for my case. What I really wanted to stress in the video is that there is always hope, no matter how long it takes. It’s two years later now and I am still living strong. I know with certainty that if it were not for Amen Clinics and medication, I would still be languishing in despair.

    • Belinda says:

      Thank you Ryan for your bravery and caring enough for others to share your story. It will give hope to many who suffer as you did. I am happy for you that a solution was found that gives you hope and happiness. You are a great encouragement and I know your father has such relief to see you doing well. I found Amen Clinics by first reading and using The Daniel Plan diet and my daughter has had a SPECT scan and is beginning treatment for the same issues. It will be worth every penny to finally have answers and a good plan for her. We’ve just put a priority on health and getting out of the failed mental health system that simply follows a straight course and does not spend the needed time for each individual case. There is not a one size fits all for our brains! We are reading Brain Warriors Way. It’s an awesome resource to get started. Looking forward to success like you have found. Best wishes!

    • USASusie says:

      Thank you Ryan for your bravery in sharing your story.

  10. Joe bello says:

    Before you liberals criticize Dr. Amen look at your heros and how much they make and how they help people. It’s nowhere close to the amount of people Dr Amen helps and he has no where near the money your politicans or celebrities make.

    • Michelle Fredrickson says:

      I agree, I don’t have the money for a brain scan for my suicidal kids with ADD, OCD, severe depression and anxiety. However, Dr. Amen has written books that really educate and give some comfort and ideas for treatment. He has also made many people much more aware of the SPECT scan . Hopefully at some point it will be available to low and middle income people struggling to stay alive!

  11. Arturo La Puente says:

    I’m the father of a 22 years old women who is in psychiatric unit in jail in Miami since September 2016 . We are trying to help her so much and will still believing that God has a purpose in every life and He are going to heal our daughter. It’s true that is not easy to find a place, doctors, hospital to understand how much they can help people with to disorders. She was diagnose of too many, taking pills too many, and passing in her life for too many, but I will not loose my faith in the Lord, I have hope that one day she will leaving a life with full of joy and peace. Thank you everyone for your comments. Keep trusting in God and hope in Him.

    • Gwen Lordeon says:

      Praying for your precious daughter and praying that God will give you wisdom and direction to get her the appropriate help she needs!

    • Lisa Coburn says:

      Please see below for some referrals that may be helpful. I am so sorry to hear that things have been so difficult.

      First, I would recommend going onto http://www.iocdf.org/find-help, which is a search engine where you can enter your zipcode and filter providers who are experienced in treating OCD. Some accept insurance. This link also leads you to free support groups in your area. Some places have long wait lists. University of Pennsylvania’s OCD Clinic is also wonderful about emailing you back with answers to questions.

    • UsaSusie says:

      Sending prayers for your daughter and your family.

  12. John S says:

    After struggling for years with varying levels of OCD behavior and obsessive thinking, I found relief and a “cure.” A scientist researcher who linked OCD to low serotonin levels in the brain: William Walsh PhD. Check out his several taped presentations on YouTube. Also check out his book: “ Nutrient Power” (Amazon.com) also check out Julia Ross’s book: “Mood Cure”. Low serotonin can be improved with supplements of 5HTP – the amino acid precursor to serotonin which is taken with a complete B complex vitamin that does NOT have folic acid (artificial B9) and the other cofactors necessary to produce serotonin including Vit. B3, B12, B9, magnesium and iron – food sources are not always enough. You will also want to check your methylation genetics by asking your doctor/naturopath to test your genetics for a MTHFR gene anamoly- 30-40 % of the world’s population has 1 MTHFR gene defect and 10-15% of people have 2! Methylation is a metabolic process required in the human body to produce neurotransmitters, DNA, all hormones and basic mitochondria (energy production) in every cell of your body. Also a heart-based meditative practice (loving-kindness emotional energy directed toward yourself – into your heart/chest does wonders to break thinking “loops” of OCD and activated the parasympathetic nervous system into rest and focus on one’s own breathing as opposed to obsessive thinking. (Out of the head and into the heart) do NOT do TM (transcendental meditation practice) as this is more “head-based” and you want to get OUT of your mental looped OCD thinking and into your body and heart through focusing on your breath. Your exhale activated the parasympathetic (resting and calming) nervous system, while your inhale activates the sympathetic nervous system into more obsessing, so be sure to draw out and elongate your exhales – with a word mantra like “peeeeeaaaaaaaaccccccceeeee” (peace) or love or whatever relaxes you. Nutrition and a self-compassion based breathing/meditation practice can eliminate obsessive thinking and OCD behaviors.

    • UsaSusie says:

      What kind of doctor did you start with for all of this serotonin research, work? I find that to be one of the biggest struggles – finding a doctor who will listen especially when overall I am a relatively healthy person. I would love to know if there is an actual test for serotonin levels…

  13. Charlotte Human says:

    As I am living in South Africa there is no way out of my situation!
    I am desperate for help!!
    I really struggle a lot!
    And my family struggles too!
    As I have done your questionnaire
    On ADD – my results negative!
    I realised that I am definately OCD!!
    With anxiety with depression from time to time!
    In SA we do not have spects done but
    Get highly addictive medicine which I do not want to use without a dr having a spect done!

    Can you possibly help me?
    Can you please suggest some supplements to help me cope?
    It is not easy to order your supplements From South Africa!

    Looking forward to your reply!

  14. Rachel K says:

    Something that anyone with OCD symptoms should check is the possibility of PANDAS or PANS. OCD/intrusive thoughts are one of the main symptoms. In the case of PANDAS, streptococcus has triggered the immune system. Instead of antibodies fighting infection, the antibodies start attacking the basal ganglia part of the brain, resulting in brain inflammation. PANS occurs when instead of strep, one or more viral infections cause the inflammation.
    They fall under autoimmune encephalitis. Antibiotics are the first course of treatment and in our case, supplements as well. I agree with the other comment above regarding serotonin levels…neurotransmitters are affected by this. Finding out gene mutations like mthfr are also important,.
    Mold (CIRS) can also call brain inflammation and exasperate OCD symptoms). It’s still very important to have treatment other than prescriptions and supplements and I’m glad this clinic can help. For anyone reading this, please go The the PANDAS network website to find out more. Other symptoms include anxiety, in some cases food restrictions, depression or rage are often part of the picture. There are not enough Doctors who know enough about this, so pushing and researching is important. Stanford has a special clinic that is very hard to get into. There are groups on Facebook that can help locate doctors if you suspect this illness.

  15. Tatiana says:

    I have a mild OCD. What have been helping me is controlling my emotions. When you make yourself happy, you less likely do more OSD actions. Also, I am very busy, which distract me from doing things that are not necessary. Also, using different breathing techniques is helpful, so is a meditation. Don’t let your finances stop you from learning and getting help yourself from OCD or ADD. You can do this! The internet is full of great advisors and herbs can help to ease any mental or emotional problems. Most emotions can be controlled by creating a postive habits that will build you up. I never though Icould be managing my own feeling and emotions. But I am getting better and better thru daily practice. Spectrum won’t help you to heal. It just helps in understanding the depth of your illness, but you already probably know what is wrong with you.

  16. Mary Featherstone says:

    What about the concept that these brain challenges actually starts because of an imbalance in the gut microbiome?

  17. Charlene says:

    Yes, MRI spects are expensive and so are regular MRIs. So are psychiatrists. The problem is not with Dr. Amen or others on the cutting edge of health issues. Most insurance companies and Medicare will not cover functional doctors, naturopaths, chiropracters, or alternative treatments out there such as cold laser, sound therapy, stem cell therapy, etc. Go after our outdated government controlled medical system (a swamp) and doctors controlled by corporate pharmaceutical companies that pay their college tuition. It’s expensive to go to the ‘outsiders’ because they have to charge for services insurance does not cover. I can’t afford a spect either but appreciate all the free information Dr. Amen and others give us.

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