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Anthony Bray, MD
Anthony Bray, MD, Doctor
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 6949
Experience:  14 years as clinician in the field of Family Practice
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Dr Bray I am having a bad times the last couple days dealing

Customer Question

Dr Bray I am having a bad times the last couple days dealing with anxiety and ocd over touching objects and picking them up and setting them down again and again. Tomorrow I see my psychiatrist and this has made me hard to function at work and at home I do not want to leave my place unless I have to. Is everything okay with my heart and is this just anxiety keeping me stuck?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.

Anthony Bray MD : Hello again,
Anthony Bray MD : Yes- be rest assured that your heart is fine!
Anthony Bray MD : The OCD thoughts and behaviors may take somewhat different forms and that sounds that this is what is happening in your case...
Anthony Bray MD : Hello again,
Anthony Bray MD : yes--- the picking up and putting things back down repetitively is just another OCD behavior. This would not adversely affect your herat's function!
Anthony Bray MD : your heart is fine ! Be assured that this is the case!!
Anthony Bray MD : The OCD thoughts and behaviors may take somewhat different forms or details but it is the same process. It is the same issue...
Anthony Bray MD : I hope that tomorrow's visit with your psychiatrist is productive and helpful for you!
Anthony Bray MD : your anxiety disorder is indeed the problem here and not your heart at all!!
Anthony Bray MD : Try to use your reminders and techniques to reassure yourself of your herat's proven good condition ...
Anthony Bray MD : The heart remains fine!!
Anthony Bray MD : Try similar techniques to avoid the repetitious picking up and putting down objects as you would with your staring... The same techniques should be helpful for you!
Anthony Bray MD : Your doctor might further adjust your medications as well....
Anthony Bray MD : OCD is a tough problem and does need the benefit of both medication and therapy. Be assured that it is not just you! Others with this problem find it difficult to gain control as well...
Anthony Bray MD : I hope this information helps! Let me know if you have further questions or discussion and I will be happy to get back with you!
Anthony Bray MD : Thank you for starting the new thread! I appreciate that !
Anthony Bray MD : take care and best regards XXXXX XXXXX! Let me know if I may be of further help!
Anthony Bray MD : Anthony Bray MD
Customer :

I was watching an award show on tv and focused on someones belt then when the camera moved it went out of view to another person. If I felt anxious in the chest when the belt went out of view was this just a nervous impulse and did watching that belt go out of view affect the heart or is vision and heart separate again in this case too? Thank you again

Anthony Bray MD : Hello again,
Anthony Bray MD : The watching if the belt did NOT affect your heart!! Not at all!! These events that bother your OCD may trigger anxiety and THAT may make you feel tight in the chest... When you feel that it is only anxiety though and NOT your heart!!
Anthony Bray MD : i hope this helps! Let me know if you have further questions! Take care!!
Customer :

thank you Dr Bray

Customer :

so that was more of a nervous flutter and not the heart

Customer :

I thought that if I saw the belt go out of view it may have caused my heart rate to increase but this was just anxiety reaction

Anthony Bray MD : Hi again,
Anthony Bray MD : Right, it was just an anxiety reaction. I think that you know from experience that this is the case!
Anthony Bray MD : Let me know if I may be of further assistance to you!
Anthony Bray MD : Take Care,
Anthony Bray MD : Anthony Bray MD
Customer :

So anytime I fixate on something on tv from my ocd then it goes to another picture the feeling in my chest is a nervous reaction and not the heart being affected at all?

Anthony Bray MD : That is right, it would be your anxiety and not your heart.
Anthony Bray MD : Best regards, XXXXX XXXXX know if you have further questions,
Customer :

Hello Dr Bray today my psychiatrist switched me over to Paxil and took me off Remeron and increased Abilify to 10. I met my parents for lunch however I had anxiety about going in to eat with them because of the crowds. My ocd today involved letting go of a credit card or car keys once they are in my pocket. My OCD kept saying that this will somehow affect the heart bad if I let go of them in my pocket. After I ate I became sluggish and feel like I am going to sleep with no energy. Did the anxiety make me feel like this or is something else physically going on with me? I am home now and feel like I am not all here like I am going to fall asleep or pass out? My heart was racing a bit as I walked up the stairs to my condo. I just do not feel right and am not sure what to do?

Anthony Bray MD : Hello!
Anthony Bray MD : Well , let's break down your symptoms a bit here....
Anthony Bray MD : in part your OCD is playing the same tune to make you worry about different factors affecting your heart .
Anthony Bray MD : This is a false worry as usual that is being perpetuated by your OCD.... The keys in your pocket for example have no relationship to your heart function nor if you are touching them or not....
Anthony Bray MD : You may have felt some fatigue after eating--- nothing really unusual there but your anxiety I think makes these feelings seem exaggerated and more severe... This is frequently an effect if anxiety...
Anthony Bray MD : So in your mind try to relax and eat assured that you are OK. Tired - yes but this is common--- everyone feels tired at times and this does not usually mean that anything serious is going on.
Anthony Bray MD : i hope that this helps. Let me know if you have further questions and I will be happy to get back with you!!
Anthony Bray MD : If my answers have been helpful and to your satisfaction then please remember to leave positive feedback. Thank you and best regards,
Anthony Bray MD : Anthony Bray MD
Customer :

hi Dr Bray

Customer :

my blood pressure was 100/74 and pulse was 112

Anthony Bray MD : Hi again-- that blood pressure was ok and pulse was a little high. Anxiety or activity may make the pulse rate rise.....
Customer :

I just don't know why I feel so energyless and I broke down crying when I got in my place

Anthony Bray MD : That sounds to me that you may have some depression as part of this issue. The crying and feeling more tired than normal would fit with depression...
Customer :

I feel like my time is running out from battling this anxiety and ocd and I feel like I am letting everyone that loves me down

Anthony Bray MD : Well those feelings are due to depression--- feeling hopeless, feeling tired and sad . These are feelings associated with depression...
Customer :

I get so scared when my heart races from anxiety that I can't focus on what is happening now

Customer :

I feel like if I just lay down in bed I am throwing in the towel

Anthony Bray MD : Yes I realize that you do. That is part of the OCD. Keep trying the MEDS and therapy to fight the problem! You have to hang in there and do your best!!
Customer :

I am scared and feel like each day is a new problem

Customer :

I feel like this is robbing me of my life

Anthony Bray MD : It is ok to rest in bed some and collect yourself... That does not mean that you are throwing in the towel...
Customer :

I can't stop crying

Anthony Bray MD : Well I know that the OCD does profoundly affects your life--- you have to fight and work to get past the problem though. You have seemed to make progress but I know you have also had setbacks ...
Customer :

my psychiatrist just seems to keep trying news meds

Anthony Bray MD : Your antidepressant should help with that.. It may help to increase the dose of the Paxil . It may be that you have not responded well to the change off of the Remeron...
Customer :

should I start taking the Paxil now to calm down?

Customer :

I just picked it up on my way home

Anthony Bray MD : Yes, go ahead and start... It takes a while for the optimum effects though....
Customer :

There is no reason to go to the emergency room?

Anthony Bray MD : Probably not a need to go to ER ... You are not in anyway suicidal are you? If you were that desperate feeling then yes-- go to ER...
Customer :

im back

Customer :

so is there hope for me

Customer :

maybe I should just rest for a bit then work on the cbt worksheets

Customer :

and take the paxil

Anthony Bray MD : That sounds reasonable . Rest, take the Paxil. Try pleasant distractions such as reading or TV perhaps.... Work on your CBT techniques...
Customer :

Thanks for being here for me Dr Bray again I should not worry about the heart at all?

Anthony Bray MD : You are very welcome! I hope that you feel better soon!
Customer :

Thank you Dr Bray I will keep you posted

Anthony Bray, MD, Doctor
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 6949
Experience: 14 years as clinician in the field of Family Practice
Anthony Bray, MD and 2 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray this morning I was up every hour since 2 a.m. and constantly had OCD of staring at my digital alarm clocks. My heart was beating at a steady pace and again I made the false association that staring at the alarm clocks then looking away somehow adversely affected the heart which I know is false. I was very sluggish at work in the morning and I paged my psychiatrist and he had me cut the dosage of Paxil in half so I am only going to be on 5 mg along with the 10 mg of Abilify. I am going to work on my CBT work also more. Could the staring be more of an eye issue than OCD? I am overdue for an eye exam. Would I be better off going to an Optometrist or Optamologist? As far as the waking up earlier this morning and staring at the digital clocks could that have been a readjustment to the medication and it made my OCD flare up? Thanks Dr Bray

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

The staring is not related to an eye issue. It is a good idea to have regular check ups for your eye health as well of course but the issues that bother you are due to OCD and not the eye.

It is possible that the Paxil might affect your sleep adversely but the majority of people will tend to sleep better and not worse. I think that the sleep problem probably has more to do with you stopping the Remeron rather than other factors. It seems that you have had worse symptoms after stopping the Remeron. The Paxil might do better at a higher dose rather than low.... You and your psychiatrist will have to work this out.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions. Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray


I had another tough day battling OCD anxiety. The side effects from the Paxil got very bad and my psychiatrist told me to stop taking it and just take 10 mg of Abilify only. I really do not understand what he is doing but I am losing faith in his ability to help me in my struggle.


My OCD acted up with touching the steering wheel with my left hand however I only allowed myself to grip it four times before I proceeded out of my car. When I do that my anxiety makes me think false thoughts that if I do not touch the wheel enough that will effect my heart that is false again right? These thoughts are so provoking they make me think something is wrong with my heart. My blood pressure was 111/76 with a pulse rate of 105. Should I be worried that is too low? I have felt like I have no energy these past three days at work but this is not related to the heart regarding the fatigue? Thank Dr Bray

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

I think that if you were doing better on the Remeron that you could ask your psychiatrist about going back on that in addition to the Abilify. I think the Abilify should help but probably is not enough to help you by itself...

Your heart is ok!! Your pulse is slightly high but not alarmingly so. Your blood pressure is good! So try not to worry about your heart!! Your heart is fine and Yes the idea of touching the steering wheel hurting or affecting your heart is indeed a false worry!! Try to let go of these heart worries!!

As for fatigue keep in mind that EVERYONE gets tired! I am tired now!! The first thing to suspect is normal causes before looking for disease states as the potential cause.sp if your fatigue continues on a persisting and abnormal path that does not improve with rest then it may need to be checked into further. First suspect that it is just normal though would be my advice!!

I hope this is helpful for you! Let me know if you have further questions! Take care!!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you Dr Bray I had an idea to battle that particular heart worry with scientific logic. Is there something I could tell myself that by either gripping holding touching or setting objects up and down on a surface have no effect on the heart because they are functioning in a different body system. Like for example when I feel the urge to keep gripping the top of the steering wheel because of the false worry it may affect my heart what could I tell myself to combat that worry and thought? Maybe I just need a certain reality formula to help push these heart worries away?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Well you could write a brief reassuring message on a card perhaps. Perhaps you could strategically place such cards in key places like your car or workplace. Keep one perhaps in your pocket. The small stone in the pocket as a reminder object is another technique. The idea is to try to keep to the truth and logical connections and avoid paranoid and magical thinking.... Your heart is indeed NOT adversely affected by looking at objects or looking away or touching normal objects or thoughts either. As you know anxiety may make your heart rate increase but this is not harmful to you!! You need to rely on the truth of these events and occurances. You happen to be plagued with the anxiety disorder of OCD. Keep in mind that everyone has strengths and weaknesses. You are no different in that regard. You have your own unique set of strengths and weaknesses. That is all!

I hope that this is helpful! Let me know if I may be of further help to you! Take care!!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Today I was able to go to the show with my friend. However I felt some anxiety because the seats were close. Again staring at an actors face on the screen and when it changes frames has no effect on the heart because heart and vision are separate functions? Sorry to ask again. Could the withdrawals be incorporated to feeling more anxiety with the absence of the other medications and just the Abilify? It seems like if its not the staring then its the obsessive touching which again have no effect on the heart? I am going to get some kind of a stone which reminds myself that the heart is fine and is it okay to keep telling myself that the heart functions by itself without any concern or worry? What would be a good key phrase to let the body

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

I'm sorry that you continue to have trouble. It is true that your visual obsessions or touching obsessions have no effect on the health of your heart!!

A key phrase might be >> my heart is healthy and not bothered by what I see or touch.

I hope this is helpful. I think that you would benefit to be on a combination of MEDS rather than only Abilify. I hope that your psychiatrist will be able to help you in this regard.

Take care!!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks Dr Bray also I forgot to mention when I cover the bottom of the cat litter box with a plastic bag I get worried when the center circle goes out of view again no effect on the heart and should I just try to ignore the circle when placing the bag over it?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Right the circle has no effect in your heart and you should ignore it.

Take care,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I am going to see my psychologist this afternoon. As I was putting the cord to the vaccum on the hanger I kept thinking that somehow that was going to affect my heart. When these thoughts pop in my head about the heart being affected negatively by touching or handling something tangible should I continue to ignore them? Basically no kind of touching or looking or any kind of movement will harm the heart? That is what I have to keep telling myself any other advice where I can just know that the heart works separately from these actions?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Yes , you are right that these actions will not hurt or affect your heart . Remind yourself of the heart's good health and it not being affected by looking or touching things in general
as best that you can!! I realize that you have a hard time with the OCD . Try to use the reminder messages and symbols. Use your CBT techniques as well. I hope this helps.

Take care!!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray earlier this evening I was placing my work bag which has cloth handles in my car however I began to obsess and kept gripping the handles lightly with my right hand then squeezing my left hand to feel my pulse. I limited the amount of time doing this but even though the heart was beating fast by doing this motion there was no correlation to the heart being harmed or its rhythm being affected by my repeated gripping the handles? Sorry to ask this again but it seems like this is a vicious cycle and happens in similar instances. Am I better off to just leave the handles alone once the bag is set down rather then retouch even though my heart was beating faster?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Yes you would be best off to ignore the handles and touch them only as they have normal function for you to lift or carry.

You are also best off to quit bothering to squeeze your wrists and check your pulse !! Your heart does not really need to be checked all the time!! Your heart functions just fine without you checking on it!

I know these steps are easier for me to say than for you to really accept and internalize. Your fear and OCD are flamed by your obsessive worries with regard to your heart and the numerous minor activities that you develop fears of these adversely affecting your heart.

I wish that there was an effective way in which I could convince you to relax your heart fears and worries and that these reassurances could remain in effect for you!!

Let me know if I may be of further help! I will be happy to get back with you! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you Dr Bray so the handle gripping and squeezing my left hand to check the pulse has no correlation as we discussed before. If my heart seemed to be beating faster is that just from the anxiety and not to worry about the action of gripping the handles affected them?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Right--- your checking of the pulse is harmless but not necessary. The handles are harmless to your heart function. You may affect your pulse rate due to anxiety factors but that is all there is to it. This is not of consequence or danger to you at all. Your vision or touch senses do not affect the function of your heart.

I hope that this is helpful for you! Best regards ,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray I have a certain OCD issue that involves staring at the clothing label tag on shirts and shorts and for some reason I have a hard time looking away from the tag once I start looking at it on the clothing. My therapist just says to read it once then look away but for some reason I get tensed up when I pull away from looking at it. Is there another method I can use? Also in regards XXXXX XXXXX things I am trying to use reverse psychology and say I will touch this only a certain number of times and it cannot hurt my heart because movement is exercise and good for the heart but I will no keep doing this. I have applied this to not getting caught up staring in the car. Again its safe for the heart because vision and heart are always separate? Thanks Dr Bray

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello!!

Yes you are safe on knowing that your visual sense and your sense of touch are separate from your heart function and are not harmful to your heart at all!! It does not hurt your heart whether you look at an object one time or a thousand!! The same is true if touch if course!! So it is mainly a matter of encouraging you to not be dysfunctional in your life with the needless preoccupations.

You may find it easier to have a technique of limiting yourself to three looks or touches-- some limited number whether one or a small number would still seem more functional than countless numbers or unlimited numbers of touches. You might try closing your eyes and count to three and break free if the object if obsession. You are welcome to give this a try. It is whatever technique that works for you that is important!!

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have further questions and I will be happy to get back with you! Best regards!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray today I spoke with my psychiatrist and prescribed 25mg of Anafrel I think I misspelled for my OCD. However I had my moments today of setting down objects like pens and blood pressure machine but I kept telling myself that this does not affect the heart. One issue with staring that bothered me was when I pulled in my parking spot my car faces the opposite building and again the same old anxiety kicked in where it questioned whether I keep facing the building for a certain period of time would that affect the heart but I used logic and said this cannot affect the heart. Is trying not to focus on something like that building for example and just moving away safe to do when it comes to avoiding the staring of that object? Thank you Dr Bray

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

Of course it is safe for you to not stare and not touch objects! Think of the issue in reverse -- why would looking at something a certain length of time help your heart?? This makes no sense does it ? It has no logic!! Keep this in mind that staring at an object or touching something can not possibly benefit your heart!! It has no effect!! It is only a FEELING that you get.... This is the nature of the OCD... These feelings are a constant problem that you need to control. So keep trying and do your best!! Take your MEDS and stay in therapy!

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have further questions! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks again Dr Bray so in this case when I turned away to walk away from the building that my car was facing and I was looking at in my car was the best thing to do to avoid more OCD staring and the feeling is harmless?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Yes it is best to avoid the OCD behaviors as best that you can. In this case turning away from the building ... These are feelings that are from the OCD that bother you... These are not harmful to your heart.

I hope this is helpful . Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray yesterday and today my OCD acted up involving repeatedly picking up and setting down a particular pen. I eventually used logic and stopped the behavior earlier this afternoon with the help self talk from my friend at work. Even though heart functions separate from vision function I find myself staring at hyphens when I am reading text on my cell phone or computer so even if the heart is beating fast that is only from anxiety and not making myself look away from the hyphen which for some reason drives my OCD up? If I find myself beginning to stare or touch something more than once am I better off moving away immediately to avoid the OCD behavior patterns? thanks again Dr Bray

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Yes as you KNOW your vision in no way adversely affects your heart. It is true that ANXIETY may make your pulse rate rise but even this is a normal aspect of our physiology and is not harmful to you!!

Whatever works best for you in stopping the OCD behaviors then take full advantage of that method . If you can do best by quickly stopping and changing the object or subject of attention then do that. Of you can close your eyes and count to three and then refocus your attention then you may try that. There are other possible routines that may be helpful for you. I'm sure that you have discussed this with your therapist.

I hope this is helpful for you . Let me know if you have further questions. Best regards !

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray


Lately when I keep entering the door to my condo building I feel a sense of heart palpatations like its almost like asthma when I enter the building and I hesitate going up the stairs because then my anxiety kicks in. Could this be more of a panic attack symptom then anxiety? Also I know vision does not affect the heart but if my anxiety thoughts make me think that staring at a semicolon or colon symbol on paper or computer can affect the heart should I just ignore it? Sorry to sound crazy but the thoughts on the heart just seem to keep finding a way to bother me.

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello!

Well your vision can't affect your heart. A semi- colon can't alter your heart function. Now the visual preoccupations may affect your OCD and anxiety. You may have anxiety problems that may escalate to panic attacks. That is a possible scenario. Your are on medication that should help to control panic attacks. The treatment of panic attacks would be similar to your treatment for OCD. As for the palpitations the most common cause of palpitations is PVC's = premature ventricular contractions. These are experienced to some degree by everyone but very frequent PVC's may need to be treated. Your perception of heart pounding , racing or feeling irregular is skewed and not reliable due to your an Anxiety and OCD. This makes your case naturally complicated. Already you have had more cardiac evaluation than you would typically need at your age! So hang in there! You need to continue to work to control the OCD and anxiety as your priority!! If you gain better control of your obsessions then this will improve your perception of your heart function. As it is your perception of your heart function is like a wild horse running across the plain while in reality your heart is a calm turtle calmly plodding along!! Such is the nature if this OCD monster!! So your job is to get control of this monster --- control the panic/ anxiety/OCD ... This is a tall order !! It does not help your OCD to delve into false ideas of semi-colons harming your heart!! The faster and more completely that you can possibly disconnect this FEELING the better you will be able to function. Your OCD is of the nature that you constantly suffer the FEELING that something is wrong with your heart. You need to reset this FEELING however and know that it is false!! Whether semi-colons or doorways or whatever it gives way to the same FEELING that something is wrong. This FEELING is a false report to your senses however. Getting beyond this is the challenge!!


I hope this helps! Let me know if I may be if further help! Best regards!!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you Dr Bray so any kind of staring at a sign or imprint label on my scale at work which I try to walk away from has no impact on the heart function and it is best that I move away quickly and divert my attention? So basically the panic could be causing the slight palpatations I get and i notice I get them when it is warm outside or humid when it is cool I do not get them so I am wondering if this could even be my mild asthma acting up? So to battle this anxiety of staring and touching objects it is best to just walk away from what I was staring at or touching and do something else so as not to prolong the OCD activity. As far as the thoughts go during these episodes even if the thoughts tell me my heart is not beating right I can ignore these because they are false as well? thank you again

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.

Hello again!

 

Yes >> with the OCD obsessions whether it is something visual or physical that you touch it is best to try to break away from the object sooner vs later.

 

Whatever technique of breaking free from an obsessive thought pattern that works BEST FOR YOU is FINE!! Break away immediately or close eyes and count to three for example >> try to recognize a troubling patern and break free...

 

Right on the thoughts with regard to your heart. Se at this point in your life we know based on your tests that your heart is finme but your mind is hardwired convinced otherwise!! So for the next ten years do not worry about your heart is my advice...(beyond ten years maybe your heart might need to be checked again is my logic here...) WE KNOW THAT THE HEART OF YOUR OCD IS HEALTH WORRY >>>SPECIFICALLY THINGS AFFECTING YOUR HEART ... so with this condition I know that you are hyper-sensitized to feeling for your heart >> you need to quit this behavior... you need to work on reprogrammming your thought process to the point that you are not constantly worried about something affecting your heart!! It is a difficult process. This is the crux of what you need to accomplish to have a happy , worry free and productive life though >> your problem is not your heart or even asthma so much as it is the OCD !!

 

Now as for asthma I do not know your history of this. If you have asthma then this may cause of course cough, wheezing, tightness in the chest and shortness of breath. If you have trouble with these symptoms then do what you need to do. Use your inhaler or go see the doctor if you should have concerns or problems with your sense of breathing...

 

 

 

At this time I do advise you to ignore tyour heart< palpitations or racing of the heart. Try not to check your pulse... thse steps should gradually over time be a helpful addition to your overall treatment plan to help settle the OCD of the heart....

 

 

I hope this helps! Please let me know if you have further questions! I will be happy to get back with you!!

 

 

Have a great fourth!! Best Regards!!

 

Anthony Bray MD

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr. Bray today I had a problem looking at the price logo on my counter scale at work and also at a poster map on the wall looking at the headline. Even though my heart was beating a little faster from the staring I tried very hard not to continue to look at these and when I did I would glance then walk away. Is looking away and ignoring completely safe to do since vision function is separate from the heart even though the anxiety is making my heart beat fast? Thanks again

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

Yes it is best to look away and walk away and avoid focusing on the objects of your OCD. It is best for you to ignore such and move on. To do so does no harm to your heart!! As I noted I would advise that you try to pay less attention to the pulse and heart as this is where you are abnormally overfocused and constantly worry!

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have further questions! Happy 4th!! Best regards!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you so much so even forcing myself not to look at these objects by moving away is probably the best thing to do when the staring starts to take place from the OCD?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Yes it is best for you to break away from the stares as quickly as possible. This is the best way to try and minimize the effects of the OCD. It is also of course not harmful to your heart!!

I hope this helps! Best regards!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Last question for the day I promise if I felt my pulse in my left hand while watching subtitles fade on tv intro program does that have any effect on heart?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

No this does not affect your heart! Let me know if you further questions!

Best regards ,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray today I had a rough day dealing with trying not to stare at the price symbol on the counter scale as well as a country map title on the wall to the left of the work counter. Again I know the heart function is separate from the vision function but the OCD makes me think that if I do not look away from either of these things a certain way it will affect my heart. My pulse which I try not to check was running fast during these episodes as well. So there is no harm looking, looking away in the opposite direction or ignoring these two items which keep flaring up my OCD? I am overweight and I was lifting a bucket of water from the ground and felt like the blood rushed up to my head and felt a little nervousness. Was that from anxiety most likely and nothing to worry about the heart in that situation of bending over and lifting the bucket back up? Thank you for helping me. I am really trying hard to nip this OCD but when I get the fast heart rate during these staring episodes I have a hard time not breaking free from it. Any other suggestions as to how I may go about avoiding the staring at these two objects?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again !!

Yes as far as your heart is concerned it makes no difference whether you stare at those objects or not. You could stare all day or look for five minutes or one second or not at all--- no difference to your heart at all!!! So it becomes the OCD issue which is the best to fight here.... Continue to do your best vs the OCD. Try to look away and keep things normal. It is just FEELINGS which drives the OCD... FEAR---ANXIETY.. We would wish to free you if these feelings!!

As for the feelings that you have with bending over it sounds like normal feelings with bending over. As you describe yourself it sounds that you may benefit to get yourself in better shape perhaps--- exercise and normal weight would be good for you for example . These are typical problems that the majority if us struggle with however!!! So try not to worry so much!! Try to take good care of yourself!! Try to ease way back on the heart worries!!

Do your best!! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray last night I was watching a program and my heart rate was up a bit however when I stared at one of the actors eye brows the screen panned to the next actor I know this sounds crazy but when I feel a nervous sensation is that strictly anxiety and not affecting the heart function because vision is separate from that? Also I noticed I really need to loose weight when I was lifting the 40 lb bag of cat litter I noticed my heart rate was up a bit as well. I am 5'8" and weigh 245 lbs

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

The watching of the eyebrows would not affect your heart. It is just anxiety that you feel. It is the same OCD>> anxiety >>worry about the heart. It is nothing to worry about.

The lifting cat litter and noticing some rise in pulse rate is normal response to exertion. It is nothing to worry about.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions. Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray I am having a hard time this week with holding onto and setting down certain objects like my cell phone with the false thoughts that it will affect my heart. Am I best off not repeating the action and just set it down once and leave it be even if I have the urge to repeat it from the OCD? Also as I was closing the plastic lid to the garbage dumpster I touched it a few more times and felt my heart was beating a little faster than normal but that was probably only from the exertion from dumping the can? Also I tend to grip the steering wheel a certain number of times before I exit the car. Even if I have the urge to go back and grip the steering wheel am I better off not doing that to break the behavior? My pulse rate seems to stay around 118 however my blood pressure is around 120/80

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello!

It is best for you to break the OCD behaviors as best that you can as soon as you can. This helps you psychologically . The more you invest in the OCD behavior the worse your anxiety will be.holding on to your cell phone does not affect your heart. The plastic lid has nothing to do with your heart. It is false fear and anxiety >>> OCD on other words.

You are best to break the behaviors as soon as you can to help treat your OCD. Remember that your heart is fine. In fact I recommend that you do nor check your pulse. This only adds to your anxiety .

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have further questions. Since I have been answering your questions for the last month I would appreciate an additional ACCEPT. at this time. This would help to compensate for my time and would be much appreciated. Thank you and best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Anthony Bray, MD, Doctor
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for all your help just one more question I had regarding watching tv program. When the camera panned from the curtains on the building from left to right where you could not see them anymore from the camera angle does that affect anything or is it just my anxiety imagination? again heart function and vision function are completely separate always?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.

Hello!

 

It was just your imagination. Your heart would not be affected by what you could see on the camera...

 

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions! Best regards,

 

Anthony Bray MD

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray my anxiety over the heart has been very bad this week. I am trying to use the skills to fight back but the thoughts about my heart keep getting stronger. There is no way that a negative thought saying your heart beating will be affected or not work right can have any real impact on the heart function? Also the repeated touching cannot harm the heart as well? Sorry to ask some of these same questions but I keep getting stuck and it makes me feel numb and lethargic. I am considering switching psychiatrists as well since I have not really felt this one has been helping me get better soon as well as the CBT therapist. My fear now is by these OCD thoughts can hurt the heart? Also can listening too carefully to your heart beat harm anything as well? thank you

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

Your negative thoughts will cause no harm to your heart.
Repeated touching will not harm your heart.
Visual stimulation will not harm your heart >>> neither staring at an object nor looking away.
The problem that you face comes down to a deep seated feeling or FEAR that your heart will be harmed and that you will somehow cause this. These feelings are FALSE FALSE FALSE!!!!

Perhaps seeing another psychiatrist may be of help for you. A fresh perspective might help. I'm glad that you feel some benefit with your CBT. I hope that the combination of therapy, medication and a psychiatrist's supervision of your care will eventually pay benefits and help to free you of the irrational fears that you have to deal with.

So hang in there and do your best!! Know that your heart is fine and that your feelings otherwise are just false feelings and fear working on you!!

I hope this helps! Let me know if I may be of further help! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you Dr Bray I forgot to mention that as I was trying to stop an OCD action of picking up an empty granola box and setting it down repeatedely I began to listen to my heart beat in my chest then it was loud then quietly. There is no harm in doing this however its probably best that I do not do this as well as not check my pulse by squeezing my left hand as well?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Right the lifting and putting down the box is of no harm. It is best to avoid checking your pulse as this just adds to your worry. It would be best not to try to listen to your heartbeat if possible for the same reason-- it only makes you worry.

I hope this helps. Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray this week was a struggle dealing with the ocd thoughts about the heart and the repetitive touching of certain objects. I know I have asked this many times but even if you look at something like a pen that has writing on two different sides and you turn it only seeing one side and not the other has no effect on the heart even though the anxiety may cause the heart to beat a little faster. Vision again is still separate in that instance of the pen. Also in my car I started to touch the buttons on the drivers side door window controls and the thought of cardiac problem came into my head for no reason so I ignored the thought and stopped touching the buttons and got out of the car. Sorry I keep getting attacked by these ocd thoughts and obsessions. If I immediately stop the touching or staring is that safe to do even though the feelings tell me falsely otherwise? Thank you

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Staring at a pen will not affect your heart!
Looking away from the own will not affect your heart !
The buttons in the car will not affect your heart!

Your fear may increase your heart rate but that is a normal physical response. That is ok and does no damage to your heart function. Even this effect does no harm and you should relax about it!!

The problem remains with your OCD> anxiety> fear. To minimize the OCD-- do try to break away from whatever object of obsession as quickly and efficiently as you may manage. This strategy to break away quickly will help in the long run but this is a long process and long psychological battle.

Keep in mind always that the heart concerns are only FALSE FEARS!! You must conquer them!

Hang in there! Work on your CBT techniques and reminders such as notes or symbols of reassurance.

Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray two things have been bothering me today. The first is if I stop looking at I PASS box on my friends windshield will that affect anything or is that just anxiety OCD again? Also I keep touching the inside seam of my underwear boxers not to sound crazy but if I just stop doing this also will that affect anything as well? Sorry to ask these crazy ocd issues but they have been bugging me bad today.

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

It is OK.... The things you are worrying about are the same. It is just feelings brought on by your OCD.

Hang in there!!

Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you Dr Bray so none of these things affect the heart?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,Right --NONE of the things affect your heart at all!! These are OCD feelings--- fight these feelings with your symbolic symbols and notes and remembering your therapy. Also use your logic--- underwear affecting your heart?? Come on that is ridiculous , right? So use your logic to dismiss some if the feelings that you get...I hope this helps! Take care!!Best Regards!!Anthony Bray MDPs just having a bad day myself today... Small bonus would be much appreciated! Thanks and take care!!
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks dr bray it seems after I eat my heart beats a little faster but could I be overanalyzing this and it could be anxiety? Also as I was watching a program I tend to focus on the medalion around this actors neck and when the screen changes I worry if that affects the heart? Is this just the same old worries that cannot affect the heart? And nothing including on tv focusing can affect the function of the heart? thank you again

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

First if all when we eat this does mean that the GI tract is more active and that the heart rate will respond to rise a little. It is normal and nothing to worry about at all!!

Yes the items that captured your attention on TV are the same old OCD- feelings and fears!! Reassure yourself as we discussed and try not to let these events worry you!!

Take care!!
Anthony Bray MD
!
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr I had some anxiety issue walking into my condo earlier this evening. As I walked away from my car I felt that if I did not look back so many times at my car that would affect the heart. Also after I looked back out the corridor window at my car I hesitated turning away for the same fear however I focused on something else and slowly turned away and walked up the stairs. Did any of this have any bad affect on the heart even though it was beating a little faster or was this just OCD and I should stop it.

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

No none if these events that you describe caused any harm to your heart.

These things that attract your attention affect you emotionally and the fear and anxiety may indeed make the heart beat faster. This response to fear is NORMAL and if no harm to your heart.

Make use of reminder symbols / notes / and your ligic to help get past the string feelings and fear.

Hang in there! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you so much so basically it makes no difference to the heart whether I look back or do not look back when turning away from my car to go into the building or look back out the corridor window at the car then turn around and go up the stairs? It was just anxiety causing the heart to beat fast

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Right-- it makes no difference what you are looking at or when your turn away as far as your heart is concerned. What you feel is just the effects of fear.

I hope this helps, best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray today I had an OCD episode this morning with looking at a sign the said propane tank refill that was red on the side of the building next to the McDonalds drive thru. I pulled my car in front of the sign and said to myself I am only going to look at this sign four times then pull away and not look back and I did not look back. Again as we talked about yesterday am I better off just ignoring whatever becomes the obsession before it becomes a staring routine? Did I do any better this time? I was so tempted to go back after work and look at that sign again but I did not and headed home and am going to try and move on from this and just ignore the sign if I see it again there tomorrow while getting coffee. Also I began touching plastic wrapper and threw it down so as not to obsessively touch it. Could the medicine combined with the CBT finally begin working? Now how can I stop the heart thoughts?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello!

I think that you did well to only look at the sign four times and move on. That is pretty good. As we know these OCD cycles can reach hundreds of repetitions so it is good that it is not that level. You are best to break any such cycle quickly. ( it does not have to be only once to be a success--- a few times and moving on --- that is fine--- that is a functional level!! )

Try not to dwell on the sign tomorrow or beyond. Try not to overly dwell on any particular onvjectvif course.

I think that you are making forward progress . I think the CBT and medication are helping. Keep in mind that this is difficult diagnosis and that it is is a PRICESS OVER TIME as far as treatment goes. You are well into that process. Hopefully you will continue to make progress and be able to realize that your heart is not in constant danger from this trivial factors that you become obsesses with. Your case is an example of the powers that our emotions may have over us. It is important in your case and many other cases that you gain control over these emotional feelings.

I hope that this helps! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Today my OCD acted up later in the day consisting of continued touching door knobs with my entire hand like a clutch then releasing it with my right hand then squeezing my left hand to feel my pulse. Also I kept clutching the top part of the steering wheel in my car with my left hand before I exited the car. Are any of these harmful to the heart or is this just OCD and I should just try not to worry and keep repeating them? Sorry to ask again if the heart is safe and is it because it is functioning under a different system then when I use my hands like I described? I promise to give you a big bonus my paypal was hacked so please do not think I have forgotten to rate you excellent! Thank you for helping me.

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

The clutching the wheel is the same type thing with the OCD. This IS NOT HARMFUL to your heart!!

Try not to even check your pulse as this only serves to make your anxiety worse and you worry all the more!

Use your techniques and reminders...

I hope this helps. Best regards!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you Dr Bray also the squeezing of the door knobs is not harmful as well as with the steering wheel? I tried the counting to four then stopping but I should definitely stop checking the pulse in my left hand because that is what was making it worse. Basically the heart functions normally during these events I am trying to lessen?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Right. The squeezing of the doorknobs is not harmful to your heart. The squeezing of the wheel is not harmful to your heart.

The heart functions normally during these events.

Best Regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Good morning Dr Bray last night my heart was beating a little faster after eating and I became nervous about setting down a glass on the counter because my heart was beating fast. I eventually did but did the hesitating do any harm or was it just anxiety? So this movement of setting the glass or cup down on the counter has no harm to heart function? thank you again

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

 

Right, the moving of the glass to set it down had no effect on your heart. The heart may beat a bit faster after eating because more blood flows to the digestive tract. This may slightly increase the demand on the heart but that is fine>> not a problem!

 

So you are fine! Try to relax with regard to your heart!

 

Best Regards,

 

Anthony Bray MD

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

thanks Dr Bray so the motion of setting a glass down has no relevance to the heart function even if my anxiety falsely makes me hesitate? thank you so much

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

 

Right >> the motion of of setting down the glass has no relevance to your heart function. Your anxiety leads you have these false fears with regard to your heart.

 

Take Care,

 

Anthony Bray MD

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray I keep having the ocd problem of turning a gillete razor back upwards and backside then setting it down and picking it up and repeating the same motion. Again this has no bearing on the heart function? And should I try to ignore the razor after I set it down? Thank you so much

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Yes >> You KNOW that the razor has no bearing or affect on your heart!! You know this!! Just don't allow your FEELINGS = YOUR fear to override your logic!!

YES >> try to put the razor down and leave it alone ASAP ( as soon and as smoothly as you are able to) Don't worry about your heart!! Your heart is A-OK!! You have no problem with your heart... these are merely feelings and fear that you have = the OCD....

Keep up the meds and the behavior techniques and your reminders that your heart function is good!

Hang in there. Let me know if I may be of further help. Take care,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

My OCD acted up again earlier this afternoon with fear of setting down my cell phone plugged into the charger and walking away. I kept on lifting it up and setting it down with false fears telling me that it would affect my heart. Also when I touched the side of the cell phone repeatedly I felt a weird sensation in my face but could that have just been anxiety again? I know this logically cannot affect the heart but why does the OCD keep telling me it does? Thank you so much

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello!

The cell phone would be harmless to your heart of course...It is part of the OCD as you know. More of the false fears that are produced by the OCD.

I don't have a great answer as to why OCD exists and plays with the mind as it does. Everyone is unique with their own set of strengths and weaknesses....so don't despair! I know that you deal with a diffficult and frustrating problem but it could be much worse...

I think you are fortunate in that your problem has been diagnosed and is being treated! 'O hang in there and keep working to gain better control.
Best Regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi Dr Bray when I start the staring at whatever object or letter catches my eyes am I best to move away from it quickly so as to stop the OCD behavior? I am trying hard to accomplish this but I keep getting stuck. Am I best to stop once and not go and look back again? Thank you

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again!

Yes it would be best for you to stop whatever OCD preoccupation that you run across as soon as you can. If you can stop a staring episode and immediately move forward then that would be great.

If you find that a particular technique WORKS WELL FOR YOU >> then take advantage of any such technique.... Close eyes and change direction if your gaze for example as one way you might try to solve the immediate problem. Close eyes , count to three and LOL away is another possible example. There are many possible variants of these short techniques that might prove helpful to you. I would think that you have discussed these with your therapist...

It is best to cut yourself free from any OCD preoccupation as quickly and efficiently as you can. I'm just saying also that there is leeway for you to operate in the way that works best for you...


I hope that this helps! Let me know if you have further questions!

Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD


Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray I became nervous with anxiety before getting out of my car and started squeezing the steering wheel with my left and right hands but this time I counted in fours so as not to drag out the OCD behavior. This again has no impact on my heart by that action? Also I split the dosage of Anafranil to 25 mg in morning and 25 mg before bed and I think that helped today deal with the OCD staring and touching.

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Right, the preoccupation with the steering wheel and your squeezing it would NOT have any impact on your heart function. It is not harmful to your heart in the least.

I'm glad to hear that you seem to feel some forward progress vs the OCD. The more quickly and fluidly that you can manage to put away your preoccupations the better for you!!

I hope this helps! Take Care!

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you so much Dr Bray does the same apply to if I was squeezing the arm rests on the desk chair that are hard plastic again no effect on the heart and should I continue with the counting to stop the action sooner?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

 

YES >> the same would apply to squeezing arm rests >> this would not harm your heart at all!!

 

Sure if the counting technique is helpful for you then by all means take advantage of it!

 

I hope this helps. Take Care,

 

Anthony Bray MD

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Can looking at water cooler knobs red and blue then walking away affect anything and heart is totally safe? just ocd

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

 

NO >> Looking at water cooler knobs (red and blue) and then walking away would absolutely no adverse effect on your heart! Your heart is fine!!

 

Try to relax!! Take Care,

 

Anthony Bray MD

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray sorry to ask a similar question but after I had gotten out of the minute clinic today because of a cat scratch wound on my hand from yesterday. I kept looking at the wall sign that said Facial Tissue in the pharmacy department. I squeezed my left hand to feel my pulse and again the false thoughts about if I do not look at that particular sign enough it will somehow affect my heart. I did my best not to stare at it. Again even the nervous impulse to stare and not to stare at that sign has no impact on the heart function? Thank you Dr Bray

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Right your staring at the sign or looking away would NOT adversely affect your heart at all!! Keep trying to break free from this false and unnecessary worry about your heart!! Try to use your reminders techniques to help.

If you would not mind an additib payment would be appreciated as it has been a month since the last... Thank you and best regards ,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you Dr Bray and I will pay additional I promise just one more thing with the looking at and looking away at sign on the wall does the nervous impulse or hesitation do anything and should I keep telling myself heart is safe and separate from the vision like this?

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Your vision and what you see has NOTHING to do with your heart function. It a your anxiety that may cause release of adrenalin and thus temporarily raise your heart rate. This is a normal response and also is not harmful to your heart !


I hope this helps! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello Dr Bray I waiting for my paypal to transfer so I can give you a bonus on here I did not forget. Today I became nervous in the car and started touching the rear view mirror repeatedely and also I kept staring at one of the engine temperature gages on the dashboard. I used my skills to count but my heart was beating fast and those same lousy thoughts kept hitting me again. And again no harm is done to heart by either touching or staring in this manner but how can I break free from that small space when both of the OCD obsessions occur at same time? Thank you and sorry to ask again

Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

Thank you---

No, you are right that neither the touching of the mirror or staring at the indicators have any effect on your heart. These are triggers for your OCD and this in turns drives you to fear. The fear and adrenalin may make your heart race BUT CALM DOWN--- such racing is a part of NORMAL PHYSIOLOGY!! We are designed to respond to challenges with the ability to suddenly increase our blood flow!! So this is NOT a HARMFUL process!!

When you have these OCD episodes I would suggest 1) close your eyes 2) count slowly to 10 ( not while driving!! Lol)
3) use the counting time to refocus and collect your thoughts --- envision a place or setting that brings you a sense if peace/ pleasure/ relaxation ( use a vacation spot or a favorite place that you know...) focus on allowing calmness , peace and tranquility to go through you... Remind yourself that you are try well... Refuse to be tricked by false fears ...

I hope this is helpful for you! Keep up your hard work!! Best regards,

Anthony Bray MD

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