Welcome

We are a professionally assisted OCD support group organized and moderated by two prominent mental health professionals.  We meet once a month at First Church Congregational, United Church of Christ in Fairfield, CT.

Our mission is to provide an informative group forum which can provide a supportive, informal, empathetic environment for people coping with OCD.

Our group consists of individuals who are OCD sufferers.  Usually, these individuals have recovered from their OCD and are presently managing their symptoms.  In addition, family members and friends of those who are suffering from OCD are also welcome to participate.  In our meetings, we discuss specific topics, such as medication, symptoms, cognitive behavior therapy, etc.  The goal of our support group is informational, not therapeutic.

On occasion, guest speakers, including mental health professionals, are invited to speak on a specific topic of interest to the group.
Click here to read about how our group became a success story. Article

We welcome you to join us!

OCD RESEARCH STUDY - PARTICIPANTS NEEDED!! : Participants 18 Years and Older Sought for Short Survey on Attitudes Toward Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Click here for details.

OCD TREATMENT: If you are seeking information about OCD treatment, please directly contact one of our group moderators, Dr. Diane E. Sholomskas or Dr. Christina J. Taylor. They will be happy to help you.


  Latest News & Information:


May is Mental Health Month!  New!
May 2015-Mental Health Month
For over 65 years, Mental Health America (MHA) and its affiliates across the country have led the observance of May is Mental Health Month to raise awareness about mental health and mental illness. Addressing mental health before Stage 4—this year’s theme for the month—calls attention to the importance addressing mental health symptoms early, identifying potential underlying diseases, and planning an appropriate course of action on a path towards overall health. Download the Mental Health Month Fact Sheet and the Mental Health Month Calendar with daily tips to boost your mind and body. For more information, click here.

Teen Mental Health Seminar, May 7, 2015 in Hartford, CT (April 21, 2015)   New!
Teen Mental Health
On May 7, 2015, the Connecticut Health I-Team will host “Uncovering Our Kids: Towards a Better Understanding of Teen Mental Health” at The Lyceum, 227 Lawrence St. in Hartford, CT. The event is being held in collaboration with ConnectiCare and Hartford Hospital’s Institute of Living. For information or to purchase tickets, click here.

1 Million Steps 4 OCD Walk in Boston on June 6, 2015 (March 23, 2015)   New!
OCD Walk
Mark your calendars and join us on Saturday, June 6, 2015, for the 1 Million Steps 4 OCD Walk. The International OCD Foundation will be hosting its 3rd annual flagship Walk in Boston. Together with members of the OCD community — including individuals with OCD, mental health professionals, friends, family members, coworkers, children, and even four-legged friends (dogs must be on a leash, of course) — we will walk to help us raise awareness for OCD and related disorders. Walk registration will open on April 6, 2015, so please check the International OCD Foundation's website (iocdf.org/programs/1million4ocdwalk) soon for more details!
Let’s see how many million steps we can collectively take for OCD if we all work together! 1 in 100 people in the US are living with OCD. And many of those people don’t have access to effective treatment. Help us change that. Take a step and be part of #1million4OCD.

OCD Connecticut has a team walking in Boston and they want you to join them!! Joining Team Connecticut is easy – just go to this link: www.crowdrise.com/susanschuster-1million4ocd2015/fundraiser/susanschuster and click on Join.
Click here to download a flyer containing all details.

Annual OCD Conference in Boston, July 31–August 2, 2015 (March 23, 2015)   New!
2015 OCD Conference
Since 1993, the Annual OCD Conference has been the only national meeting focused solely on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related disorders. This unique event allows people with OCD and their loved ones to learn about the latest OCD treatment and information alongside the mental health professionals who care for them. The Conference features more than 100 presentations, workshops, and seminars as well as nearly two-dozen support groups and various evening events. The presenters include some of the most experienced and knowledgeable clinicians and researchers in the field, as well as people with OCD and family members sharing their stories about life with OCD.
This year is the 22nd Annual OCD Conference — we hope that you will join us to make this the best Conference yet!
More questions? Click here to contact the IOCDF.
Want to receive updates from the IOCDF about the latest Conference information? Click here to sign up to receive updates via email.


OCD Support Group for Family Members and Loved Ones of People Living with OCD (April 15, 2015)   New!
Support Group
An OCD support group has been created for family members, loved ones and caregivers of people living with OCD. Do you have a loved one with OCD and want to gain strength and knowledge through peer support? Please join us on the last Wednesday of every month from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Stop and Shop, 275 Highland Avenue, in Cheshire, CT. Please call 203-610-1836 for information or questions. Click here to download a flyer containing all the information.

The Invisible Disease: An OCD Account (April 13, 2015)   New!
NAMI
OCD is not curable, but it is manageable. The purpose of this personal story is to document one human’s struggle with a very real, and surprisingly common, mental health condition. To read this story, click here to go to NAMI's website.

We Have Launched a New, Easy to Use Message Board! (January 26, 2015)   New!
QuickTopic
We are very happy to announce the launch of a new message board. Due to comments that our last message board was confusing and not very easy to use, we researched other message boards and found QuickTopic. QuickTopic provides a super-easy single-topic web forum. You can start a topic in seconds and can easily create and manage discussions using your web browser. Your participants can join in even more easily. All you need to do is click "Post a new message", enter your name (you don't need to enter your real name, just create a user name), type in your message and click "Submit message". Click here to go to the message board.

Smartphone Mobile App Study for OCD (January 21, 2015)   New!
iPhone
Researchers at Butler Hospital and Alpert Medical School of Brown University are seeking adults (18 or older) to participate in an online study evaluating a mobile smartphone app as a self-help treatment for OCD. Each participant will receive free access to the mobile app and be asked to complete four online surveys over 12 weeks. If you are interested in learning more or to find out if you are eligible, call 401-455-6541. Click here to download a flyer containing all the information.


News from the International OCD Foundation (IOCDF):

Winter & Spring 2015 Meeting Schedule Announced! (December 30, 2014)
Meeting
We have announced our new meeting schedule for January to June 2015. We look forward to seeing you at our meetings! New participants are always welcome! Go to our Meeting Schedule for dates & times.



OCD Facebook Page (October 13, 2014)  New!
FacebookCheckout the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder / OCD Awareness Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ocd.ocd. This page is designed to provide information, support, & resources for OCD. This is a great resource to connect with others and share practical ideas.


Yale OCD Research Clinic – Director's Blog (October 21, 2014)
Yale OCD Research Clinic BlogThis blog is an opportunity for the Director of The Yale OCD Research Clinic, and perhaps other members of the Clinic, to write about all aspects of OCD, and related issues of brain biology, clinical experience, and society. The director hopes that it will be of interest to professional colleagues, other researchers, patients and their families, and anyone else interested in OCD, and related conditions like Tourette syndrome, trichotillomania, and hoarding. Click here to go to the blog.


Website is new resource for young adult mental health (September 5, 2014)
TurningPointCT.orgTurningPointCT.org is a new website developed by young people in Connecticut who are in recovery from mental health and substance use issues. While they're not clinicians, they know what it’s like to feel alone, stressed, worried, sad and angry. They’ve lived through the ups and downs of self-harm, drugs and alcohol, and the struggle to find help. Fortunately, they found what worked for them. Their goal is to provide information and support to help you choose your path so that you don’t have to struggle the way they did. Click here to visit the website.

Trichotillomania Learning Center seeking volunteers to participate in BFRB research studies (June 3, 2014)
The Trichotillomania Learning Center
The Trichotillomania Learning Center (TLC) is currently seeking volunteers to participate in research studies regarding BFRBs, or Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors, that include trichotillomania, skin picking disorder, chronic nail biting, cheek biting and similar behaviors. By participating in BFRB research, you will help researchers develop better ways to diagnose and treat BFRB disorders. There are several internet-based surveys and regional participation opportunities that need your help! Click here to go to TLC's website for full details.

Fairfield County OCD Support Group partners with OCD Connecticut to establish an IOCF affiliate!
IOCDF Affiliate
We are pleased to announce that our support group has partnered with OCD Connecticut to form an affiliate of the International Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Foundation. We are affiliated and incorporated as OCD Connecticut or OCD CT and we are excited to join the IOCDF to expand their outreach. Our mission as an affiliate is to serve adults, children, and families in Connecticut living with obsessive-compulsive disorder by promoting early intervention and expanding awareness, treatment and research. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a disorder of the brain and behavior. OCD causes severe anxiety in those affected. OCD involves both obsessions and compulsions that take a lot of time and get in the way of important activities the person values.

Please visit OCD Connecticut's website at www.ocdct.org and like them on Facebook so we can spread awareness of our affiliate. Contacting OCD CT is easy - their phone number is (860) 415-6233 and their email address is CT.ocdf@gmail.com. Please check both our websites for upcoming events.

CMS announced they will not go forward with restrictions to anti-depressant and anti-psychotic medications in Medicare Part D
NAMI
The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced on March 10, 2014 that they will not go forward with restrictions to anti-depressant and anti-psychotic medications in the Medicare Part D program. This decision by CMS shows what can be accomplished through grassroots advocacy! In its announcement, CMS said that it will not seek any further changes to the six protected classes of medications including mental health medications in the Medicare Part D program without first receiving additional stakeholder input. View NAMI's press release. Support the cause!

New Website Changes!
Website Icon
We have made a couple of great changes to our website. First, we have added an up-to-date news feed from the IOCDF under our "Latest News" section. Secondly, we have created a "News Archive" page to store old news items. We hope that these changes will give you a more pleasurable browsing experience on our site.

Clutter Cleaner: People That Understand The Hoarding Problem
Clutter Cleaner
Clutter Cleaner is a company that has been cleaning hoarded homes and estates for over 10 years. The company's founder, Matt Paxton, is America’s number one expert on extreme cleaning and hoarding situations and is the author of "The Secret Lives of Hoarders". They have opened an office servicing all of the Connecticut area. Visit their website at www.cluttercleaner.com to learn more about their methods and how they work with hoarders and their families.

NEWS FLASH: Final Rule Released on Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equality Act (MHAEPA)
CMS.gov
On November 8, 2013, the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Labor and the U.S Department of Treasury, issued the final rule to implement The Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA). This law requires group health plans and health insurance to ensure that financial requirements such as co-pays, deductibles and treatment limitations applicable to mental health or substance use disorder benefits are equal to all medical/surgical benefits, in addition to ensuring equal treatment for residential and outpatient behavioral health care.

Computer, Web, and Smartphone-Based Self-Help Programs for OCD
Technology
New technologies have paved the way for a wide variety of mobile treatment options for OCD, including smartphone-based applications (aka "apps"), and internet and computer-based software programs. These apps and programs have the advantage of being widely accessible and, in some cases, can provide lower cost alternatives to tradtional therapy. For more information, click here to view the OCD Newsletter article that attempts to provide a basic overview of these programs. For a list of smartphone apps, click here.

OCD Treatment Tip!
I Will Beat OCD
Every time you do an exposure that makes you anxious, you are taking a step forward to conquering your OCD.


Become a member of the International OCD Foundation (IOCF)
IOCF
As we are currently working on forming an IOCF affiliate for Connecticut, we strongly encourage our support group members to support the IOCF by becoming members of the IOCF. Membership benefits include quarterly newsletters and reduced rates at the annual IOCF conference. To become a member of the IOCF, click here.

IOCDF Uses Social Media!
International OCD FoundationTake advantage of IOCDF's social media tools to stay more in touch with the foundation's resources and information. To follow IOCDF on Facebook, go to Facebook.com/IOCDF. To follow IOCDF on Twitter, go to Twitter.com/IOCDF.


#OCDchat on Twitter!
TwitterDue to the success of IOCDF's series of "Ask the Experts" Twitter chats during OCD Awareness Week, they've decided to make this a regular event. Join IOCDF on the 3rd Monday of each month at 8pm ET, while they answer your questions about OCD treatments, resources, and any other questions you may have about OCD. They will also occasionally host guest experts to talk about special topics. It's free to participate... all you need is a Twitter account. Find them with the hashtag #OCDchat. To learn how to participate in a Twitter chat using #OCDchat, click here.

OCD Challenge Website
OCD ChallengeOCD Challenge is an online, interactive, behavioral program designed to help people suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. The program was built by psychologists who are leaders in the field of behavior therapy and have a specialization in the area of OCD. OCD Challenge has three Modules: Assessment, Gaining Awareness and Intervention. Users will be guided through the Modules and taught skills and strategies for managing their OCD behavior. OCD Challenge uses the principles of exposure and response prevention (the treatment of choice for OCD) to help the user to confront and challenge their OCD. OCD Challenge is not therapy and there is not a therapist on the other end of the computer telling you what to do. Instead, OCD Challenge is a program built to interact with the user in a way that is interesting, useful, and moves the user toward change. OCD Challenge is offering 6 months free use of its website with the promo code "POMA" to anyone who is interested. You can access the website at ocdchallenge.com. For a virtual tour of the website go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DzR88HLawAg.

The International OCD Foundation launches an "OCD in Kids" website
International OCD FoundationThe IOCDF is proud to announce its new website regarding OCD in kids and teens. The foundation's goals in building this website are to educate the general public about OCD, facilitate education and training of mental health professionals, pediatricians, and school personnel, support research into the causes of and effective treatments for pediatric OCD, and improve access to resources for those with OCD and their families, as well as clinicians and school personnel. To access this website, go to ocfoundation.org/ocdinkids/.

iCounselor OCD App: Your portable self help tool for your iPhone
iCounselor OCD AppThe iCounselor OCD iPhone app teaches you skills to resist obsessions and compulsions! All material was written by a licensed psychotherapist (LCSW) with twenty-five years of counseling experience. This app is compatible with the iPhone or iPod Touch. Requires iPhone OS 3.0 or later. For more information and to download the app, go to http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/icounselor-ocd/id338431800?mt=8.

OCD In The News
News
The International OCD Foundation has been working hard to raise public awareness about OCD. As part of this mission, it has created a web page containing many news stories regarding the subject of OCD. To visit this page, go to ocfoundation.org/News.aspx.


Group Members: Participate in our online message board discussion topics!
We encourage all group members to use our message board and post your thoughts and comments. Click here to access our message board.

Meeting Handouts & Flyers Now Online!
We have placed various handouts and flyers that have been distributed during our support group meetings here on our website. Click here to access them.






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