"Ealing IAPT helped me get my life back"

About: Ealing IAPT

(as the patient),

I have suffered from OCD and social anxiety since I was 18; spending hours in the bath not being able to leave it without wanting to get back in again. I would constantly wash my hands every time I touched anything I thought was unclean or contaminated.

This condition completely took over my life; it got to the stage that I wouldn't go outside the house in fear of getting contaminated, and basically stayed at home through my entire twenties. I would stay inside for months at an end. I wouldn't go to social situations like family gatherings or see friends.

I became more and more isolated having no job or career just staying indoors at home with my parents.

Last year I was referred to the Ealing IAPT service by my GP after being on anti depressants for several years with no improvement in my symptoms.

After receiving a telephone assessment from Wendy at Ealing IAPT I was introduced to Ms Dhaliwal my CBT Therapist in July 2015. From the very first appointment I felt relaxed and at ease in talking about my situation, and that she genuinely wanted to help me overcome my worries and fears that had built up over decades.

Through weekly appointments over the months I kept diaries of my progress, through this I could see visually the amount of time I spent on my phobias and obsessions, and crucially how to reduce them and over time stop them too.

But I also learned that this is an on going process keeping vigilant that none of the old phobias or new ones start up.

I just want to say how much I appreciate all the help the Ealing IAPT team and specifically Ms Dhaliwal have shown me getting my life back.

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Response from Consultant Psychologist, West London Mental Health NHS Trust

Dear Jes70,

Thankyou so much for taking the time to write about your experience with the Ealing IAPT team. Your words are really very touching and it's really wonderful to read about your experiences. I am so delighted that after so many years of being isolated by feelings of anxiety you have made such great progress. Yours really is an inspiring story and I will make sure that the team manager and Ms Dhaliwal both hear about it straight away. I wish you the best of luck for the future.