OCD which stands for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is a psychological disorder which can affect the mental well being of people of all ages from kids to elders. It causes people to get caught in a web of obsessions and compulsions as the name suggests.

In this case, the obsessions can be various unwanted things like thoughts, images or desires which are intrusive and can set off majorly disturbing feelings in the patient.

Compulsions, in this case are the behaviours which are engaged by the person in order to make the obsessions go away and to decrease their distress caused by the obsessions.

Everyone, in some point of their life suffers from obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours of some kind. This, however does not mean that everyone has some form of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD. People with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder suffers from such an intense cycle of obsessions and compulsions that their time gets consumed and their OCD gets in the way of the day to day tasks that the person does.

Treatment Of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

The task of treating Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is a challenging one. Some of the standard treatments include Exposure Therapy where the patients are exposed to the source of their anxiety (obsessions in this context) to overcome their distress and Prescription Medications like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRIs.

These standard treatments can offer patients a significant relief from their Obsessive Compulsive Disorder but not all patients can be treated by them. In the case that standard treatments of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder are ineffective for a patient in treating their OCD due to some kinds of side effects or other reasons then they should look for alternative treatments that are well-proven.

There are a number of Over the Counter supplements also known as OTCs which are nutritional supplements used to treat a variety of disorders. These ‘nutraceuticals’ (as people refer them) have been used in many cases to control Obsessive Compulsive Disorders in people. In this article, we are going to look at a few OTC supplements used to control obsessive compulsive disorders in people and will provide some general advice by reviewing the evidence and researches that support their usage in controlling OCD in people.

N-Acetylcysteine (N-AC)

Acetylcysteine or N-acetylcysteine (N-AC) comes from the amino acid named cysteine. N-AC is an antioxidant which is generally used against Tylenol Poisoning or Acetaminophen Poisoning along with the treatment of some lung disorders. The general brand of this drug used in most clinics is Mucomyst. Inside the patient’s brain, N-acetylcysteine acts as a chemical which has effects on the neurotransmitter called glutamate which is an excitatory neurotransmitter as well as N-AC acts as an antioxidant which is used to remove potentially dangerous oxidizing agents in the human body.

Since, Glutamate is an excitatory neurotransmitter, an imbalance of Glutamate can cause OCD in patients. Hence there has been quite an interest in using N-acetylcysteine as an OCD treatment. However, the evidence supporting the OCD treating properties of N-AC is fairly thin. But a recent study conducted in Iran suggests that N-AC can be used as a treatment for OCD. But more research in the field is needed as the methodological issues decrease the usefulness of the study.

Glycine

Glycine is an amino acid which is found naturally in dietary protein. Glycine is an essential component of all the cells in the human body. In the brain, Glycine can also affect the action of Glutamate but in a different way than N-AC which we discussed earlier. In a recent case study of long term ministrations which were placebo controlled proved that Glycine may benefit the patients with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. However, the dosage of Glycine administered to patients in this study was sixty grams per day which is a large dosage which causes difficulty to intake in patients. Also, Glycine can cause nausea in patients due to its chalky taste. These factors limit its use to treat OCD in patients.

Apart from the aforementioned study, there have been studies aimed at N-methylglycine which is also called sarcosine. Sarcosine is a compound which is derived from Glycine and it functions by blocking the cellular reuptake of Glycine in the body.

It functions in the same way as Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) work which is one of the most common antidepressants which block the cellular reuptake of Serotonin. In a research study which was uncontrolled, patients suffering from OCD were given Sarcosine in doses of two grams per day which resulted in modest but statistically significant effects in treating OCD in patients. Nowadays, various pharmaceutical companies are synthesizing new supplements with similar mechanism of actions as Sarcosine. One such supplement is Bitopertin which is currently in the stage of clinical trials and will hopefully be soon sold as an OTC supplement.

Kava

Kava is a green and verdant member from the pepper family that is local towards the South Pacific, where it has been utilized to treat tension and sleeping disorders. Various careful examinations have explored the utilization of kava in common anxiety disorders in patients and comparable conditions, and there is huge proof for benefit. The systems of impact are not totally clear in Kava; particular alkaloids in the kava plant may collaborate with neuronal calcium channels, receptors for the synapse GABA, and the reuptake transporter for the synapse noradrenaline, which are all recipients for a significant number of the current psychological medicines.

There have been no investigations analyzing the advantages of kava in treating Obsessive Compulsive Disorder yet. Its capacity to direct nervousness in different conditions recommends that it might be useful sometimes. In any case, the side effects of consuming Kava are of concern. There have been different reports of conceivably serious liver harmfulness in kava clients. It can likewise cause development variations, skin staining, and sleepiness in individuals consuming Kava.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD is a destructive psychological disorder which is of great concern. However, the symptoms of OCD can be generally treated using Over The Counter Supplements or OTC Supplements like N-acetylcysteine (N-AC), Glycine, Sarcosine, Kava, etc. But one has to be aware of the side effects of the respective OTC Supplements. Always consult your doctor before starting any medication for curing your OCD.

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