What is OCD? Explaining Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

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There are many types of disorders in the world. Many people who are diagnosed with an disorder normally wouldn’t know about it because some symptoms aren’t as noticeable. OCD is not particularly common (Robinson 2017). OCD stands for obsessive compulsive disorder and whens its symptoms would usually be someone who is characterized by the presence of recurrent obsessions/ or compulsions ( Becker 2014). There are many stories of people who are diagnosed with this disorder, the type of treatments the patient would have to go through , and how they overcome their obsession.

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Obsessive- compulsive disorder (OCD) is a neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by recurrent distressing thoughts and repetitive behaviors or mental rituals performed to reduce anxiety. It often goes unrecognized and is undertreated. The lifetime prevalence of OCD is 1.6% and the symptoms are often accompanied by feelings of shame and secrecy because patients realize the thoughts and behaviors are excessive or unreasonable (Peterson 2015). In addition, the symptoms usually begin during adolescence, and more than 50% of affected persons have symptom onset before their mid-20s. Patients might give off clues by implying to intrusive thoughts or repetitive behaviors. Avoidance of particular locations or objects, excessive concerns about illness or injury, and repetitive reassurance-seeking are common. For example, chapped hands maybe due to excessive hand washing.

The diagnostic of this is that obsessions are recurrent intrusive thoughts or images that cause marked distress. Patients will most likely recognize that most of their thoughts are often self-generated and inappropriate. The obsessions and compulsions are severe enough to be time consuming (more than one hour daily) or to cause significant impairment. At some point during the course of the disorder, the patient has recognized that the obsessions or compulsions are excessive or unreasonable. Obsessions consists of aggressive impulses, contaminations, need for order, religious, repeated doubts, and sexual imagery. On the other hand, compulsions consists of checking, cleaning, hoarding, mental acts, ordering, reassurance-seeking, and repetitive actions. In addition, patients are characterized by inflated responsibility, intolerance of uncertainty and perfectionism, including excessive concerns over mistakes (Becker 2014).

OCD has a reputation of being difficult to treat, but there are many effective treatments available. Evidence based medical and behavioral therapies are available to reduce the severity and frequency of obsessions and compulsions but it might take weeks to months for these therapies to become effective. Psychiatric consultation is recommended for patients with severe OCD. In addition, cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is the method of psychotherapy most often used and the exposure and response prevention is a key element of CBT that has been proven effective in treatment of OCD. How this works is that Patients are exposed to anxiety- provoking stimuli, and learn to not perform compulsive behaviors in response (Peterson 2015). . Exposure and response prevention is usually performed in 13 to 20 weekly sessions, with each session lasting one to two hours.

When someone who is diagnosed with OCD, the person itself wouldn’t know because the symptoms are not as visible unless a person pays attention to the certain individual. OCD is an obsessive compulsive disorder and a person who has it will have routines where that individual is repeatedly doing something over and over again. OCD is not something to neglect or avoid because serious causes can happen and it’s better to get treated right away by going through cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), before it increases. It can increase by hurting your body physically such as washing hands excessively causing dry hands. Once the therapy is effective, the patient has to continue on with it for a year or two due to the fact that it can come back easily.

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What Is OCD? Explaining Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. (2020, Apr 22). Retrieved November 30, 2022 , from

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