When Religious Observance and OCD Collide

Reuven was a frum teenager who tried to follow the halacha correctly. Whenever he recited the Shema, he got nervous that he might not have pronounced every single letter properly. In order to alleviate his concerns, he repeated words numerous times until he felt confident that he pronounced it just right. As time went on, […]

Depression – It’s Nothing New Mental Illness in Jewish Tradition

Depression is a well known mental health disorder. Still, it is a disorder subject to some confusion, because everyone feels down or sad now and then. Clinical depression is much more than that; it is a serious illness. When someone has depression, it hinders his daily life and causes pain to the depressed individual and […]

Flying Under the Radar ADHD in Women

She rises in the middle of the night to provide food for her family… She plants a vineyard from her earnings… She girds her loins with strength and energizes her arms… Her children rise and commend her; her husband praises her, “Many daughters have performed valiantly, but you surpass them all!” (Mishlei 31) Whenever Shoshana* […]

Sailboats and ADHD

What is the connection between sailboats and ADHD? Surprisingly, they are closely related. But first we have to explain what ADHD is, and then the connection will become quite clear. Usually, people ask a different question: Is ADHD real? Yes, it is definitely real, but it is greatly misunderstood. This article will attempt to clarify […]

It’s All in Your Head When OCD Lurks in the Shadows

OCD, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. The mere mention of this disorder elicits images in our minds of excessive hand-washing, checking locks countless times, spending hours making sure that the books on the bookshelves are “just right,” and other compulsive actions. If someone is not engaging in such overt compulsive actions, you would think that he does not […]

Lost Opportunities- A Glimpse into the Hidden World of Social Anxiety Disorder

he following four brief anecdotes (based on true stories) concern people who might be your friend, neighbor, or even family member. The condition being described in these anecdotes may seem somewhat benign, but when you think about it, you will realize that this disorder can cause a person to get stuck in life and miss […]

A Holey Brain: How a 19th Century Mishap Sheds Light on ADHD

September 13, 1848, began as a regular day for Phineas Gage, a railroad worker in Vermont. That day, his group was blasting rock as they were preparing the roadbed for railroad tracks. The procedure was to first bore a hole in the rock. Then gunpowder, sand, and a fuse were inserted into the hole. Finally, […]

An OCD Conversation

Over the last few years, I have had many conversations about OCD with people who have called Relief for a mental health referral. Those conversations form the basis of this fabricated dialogue. OCD sufferers will find this conversation very familiar, and those who do not have experience with OCD will find it remarkable and informative. […]

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow The Secret World of Trichotillomania

Trichotillomania sounds like a spider that you might meet in an Amazon rainforest. In reality, it is a mental health disorder that is characterized by the compulsive urge to pull out one’s hair. Trichotillomania is Greek for “hair pulling madness.” It is estimated that between one and three percent of the population suffers from this […]