Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder:                               Signs and Symptoms

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by recurring, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and/or irrational, excessive urges to do certain actions (compulsions). Although many individuals with OCD know their thoughts and urges don’t make sense, they are still often unable to stop them without treatment. 


People may experience occasional obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors, but in OCD the symptoms typically last more than an hour each day and interfere with all aspects of life. The following are commonly experienced symptoms in those who have OCD:

  • Obsessions
    • Fear of germs or contamination
    • Unwanted forbidden or taboo thoughts
    • Doubts about having done something right, such as locking a door at night
    • Thoughts about harming yourself or others
    • Need to have things in a perfect order
  • Compulsions
    • Excessive cleaning and/or hand washing
    • Compulsive counting
    • Repeatedly checking to make sure something has been done right, such as checking to make sure a door is locked
    • Ordering things in a particular and precise way


  • To learn more about OCD, or find out if you may be affected by the disorder we recommend contacting your health care provider.
  • To read more about OCD, the following resources are suggested:
    • NAMI: https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Mental-Health-Conditions/Obsessive-compulsive-Disorder
    • NIMH: https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/obsessive-compulsive-disorder-ocd



Living With ADHD

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a disorder, affecting both children and adults, that makes it difficult for one to pay attention and control impulse behaviors. The American Psychiatric Association estimates 8.4% of children and 2.5% of adults have ADHD. Although there is no cure for ADHD, various treatments can be used to help minimize the symptoms of the disorder. 

Treating ADHD

The following are treatments commonly used for ADHD:

  • Medication
    • Stimulants: Stimulants are used because the medicine increases dopamine, which can help one’s ability to think and pay attention.
    • Non-Stimulants: Although these medications may take longer to work than stimulants, they can also improve one’s ability to focus, pay attention, and control impulses.
    • Antidepressants: Antidepressants are not currently approved by the FDA specifically for the treatment of ADHD, but are prescribed at times to treat adults with the disorder.
  • Therapy
    • Therapy may not directly be effective in treating ADHD symptoms, but is often used as a way for individuals to help cope with daily challenges.
  • Education and Training
    • To help children and adults struggling with ADHD, the support and guidance of family, friends, and teachers can play a big role in treatment. This assistance includes, but is not limited to, parenting skills training, stress management techniques, and support groups.


  • To learn more about ADHD, or find out if you or your child may be affected by the disorder, we recommend contacting your health care provider.
  • To read more about ADHD, the following resources are suggested:
    • APA: https://www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/adhd/what-is-adhd
    • NIMH: https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/attention-deficit-hyperactivity-disorder-adhd-the-basics
    • NAMI: https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Mental-Health-Conditions/ADHD


National Wellness Month is recognized each August to help promote self-care and the creation of healthy habits. 

Each person has their own unique body, and with that, their own set of health needs. Taking steps towards finding what your body needs and thrives on can help you improve your overall wellness.

It is important to remember that wellness does not just mean eating healthy and exercising, but rather creating a healthy environment socially, spiritually, financially, and intellectually. Working to better yourself in a variety of aspects can help you achieve a sense of whole body and mind wellness. 

Through the help of online resources, such as those from the National Institute of Health, you can learn how to find wellness in your own life. 

For more information, use the following links to these nationally recognized organizations:

NIH: Wellness Toolkits 


NAMI: Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle 



Five tips for Practicing Self-Care

Taking time for proper self-care can do wonders for your overall physical and mental health. Even seemingly small acts can make a big difference in the long run. The following list includes self-care tips recommended by the NIMH:


Regular Exercise

Consistent exercise, even in small amounts, can help boost your mood and energy levels.


Eat Healthy Meals and Stay Hydrated

Creating a balanced diet with proper water consumption can help improve focus and energy.


Make Sleep a Priority

Do your best to stick to a sleeping schedule that includes enough time for your body to rest.


focus on The Positive

Although it is easier said than done, challenge your negative thoughts and try to keep your focus on the positive. 


Take time to Relax

Test out various relaxation techniques and activities to see what works best for you, and make these practices a regular part of your schedule.

To learn more about self-care, use the following link to visit the NIMH’s page on caring for your mental health: https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/caring-for-your-mental-health/

This upcoming Saturday, staff members of NW Mind-Body Wellness will be supporting the Salem community by volunteering at the Fall Sports Physical Clinic. The event will take place at Judson Middle School from 9am to 1pm. We hope to see you there!

We Stand in Support of Simone Biles

As many have likely read in headlines this week, U.S. Olympian Simone Biles has withdrawn from all-around competition at the Tokyo Games. Biles’ decision has sparked many conversations on mental health, both positive and negative. As a company, team, and part of a community, NW Mind-Body Wellness stands with Simone Biles as she takes the necessary steps for her mental health. It was an act of bravery for her to prioritize her mental health, and should be applauded. Biles stands as a role model for many, not only her gymnastics skills, but also for her heart and courage.


Picture by USA Today


Depression: Signs and Symptoms

Depression (major depressive disorder or clinical depression) is a serious mental health condition that affects many individuals. It can cause changes in the way that one thinks and feels, interfering with daily life. Typically, to be diagnosed with depression, symptoms must persist for at least two weeks.


The symptoms of depression may vary depending on the person and form of depression. Most people, however, find that these symptoms interfere with day-to-day life. Common symptoms include, but are not limited to:

  • Changes in sleep
  • Loss of energy
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Lack of interest in activities
  • Hopelessness
  • Feelings of guilt
  • Change of appetite 
  • Physical aches and pains
  • Suicidal thoughts

COMMON Forms OF Depression 

  • Clinical depression
  • Persistent depressive disorder
  • Postpartum depression
  • Seasonal affective disorder
  • Bipolar disorder


  • To learn more about depression, or find out if it may affect you, we recommend contacting your health care provider.
  • To read more about depression, the following resources are suggested:
    • NAMI: https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Mental-Health-Conditions/Depression
    • NIMH: https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/

ANXIETY DISORDERS: Signs and Symptoms

Many people often experience anxiety, whether the source is stress from work, the weight of making an important decision, or anything else. Anxiety disorders, however, are more than temporary worries. For those with an anxiety disorder, the anxiety does not go away and can even get worse over time. The symptoms of these disorders can interfere and create challenges within daily life and responsibilities. 


Although there are multiple types of anxiety disorders with their own unique symptoms, they all have the feature of “persistent, excessive fear or worry in situations that are not threatening.” (NAMI) The following are commonly experienced symptoms in those who have an anxiety disorder:

  • Emotional Symptoms
    • Feelings of dread
    • Feeling tense
    • Irritability 
    • Restlessness
    • Anticipating the worst
  • Physical Symptoms
    • Pounding or fast beating heart
    • Sweating or tremors
    • Headaches
    • Fatigue or insomnia
    • Upset stomach


  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • Panic Disorder
  • Phobias


  • To learn more about anxiety disorders, or find out if you may be affected by one, we recommend contacting your health care provider.
  • To read more about anxiety disorders, the following resources are suggested:
    • NAMI: https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Mental-Health-Conditions/Anxiety-Disorders
    • NIMH: https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/anxiety-disorders/



Each July, National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month is recognized to help bring awareness to the unique mental health struggles faced by both racial and ethnic minorities. 

One’s background and identity can often make finding adequate mental health treatment more difficult. National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month was founded by Bebe Moore Campbell on the idea of changing this. Together as a community, we can take on the challenge of creating an inclusive mental health network for all.

For more information, use the following links to these nationally recognized organizations:

HHS https://www.minorityhealth.hhs.gov/minority-mental-health/

MHA https://www.mhanational.org/BIPOC-mental-health-month



Eating disorders can affect people of all ages, weights, and backgrounds. Although there are more, listed below are three of the most common types of eating disorders and symptoms. It can also be noted that a large portion of individuals with eating disorders don’t meet the full criteria for anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, or binge-eating disorder, but instead may be diagnosed with Other Specified Feeding and Eating Disorders (OSFED)


People with anorexia nervosa avoid food, severely restrict food, or eat very small quantities of only certain foods.

  • Extremely restricted eating
  • Excessive exercise
  • Relentless pursuit of thinness
  • Intense fear of gaining weight
  • Distorted body image


Binge-eating followed by behaviors that compensate for the overeating, such as forced vomiting, excessive use of laxatives or diuretics, fasting, excessive exercise, or a combination of these behaviors.

  • Chronically inflamed or sore throat
  • Acid reflux disorder or other gastrointestinal problems
  • Severe dehydration
  • Electrolyte imbalance

Binge-eating disorder

People with binge-eating disorder lose control over their eating. Unlike bulimia nervosa, periods of binge-eating are not followed by purging, excessive exercise, or fasting.

  • Eating unusually large amounts of food in a specific amount of time
  • Eating even when full or not hungry
  • Eating fast during binge episodes
  • Feeling distressed, ashamed, or guilty about eating


  • To learn more about eating disorders, or find out if you may be affected by a disorder, we recommend contacting your health care provider.
  • To read more about eating disorders, the following resources are suggested:
    • https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/eating-disorders/
    • https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/