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OCD

Aug 27, 2008
Many people suffer from obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). It is an anxiety disorder in which a person has an obsessive and/or compulsive need to do certain things at specific times. A person with OCD may even spend hours at a time being repetitive and it can be almost impossible for them to stop themselves.

For instance, a person with OCD may feel the obsessive need to ramble on excessively about the same subject. They can be irrationally obsessed with religion, sex, or the need to have everything a certain way and could also have an irrational fear over such things as spiders, germs, water, elevators, etc... Sometimes talking to them about their obsession isn't enough and they will need to get professional help.

A person with OCD will sometimes try to make their obsessions go away by doing compulsive things. If they have an obsessive fear of germs, they may wash their hands over and over again or if they have a fear of spiders, they may check the bathroom a dozen times to make sure none are around before taking a shower. Similarly, if they have a fear of elevators, they will always take the stairs, no matter how many floors they have to walk up or down or they may check the stove repeatedly because of a fear of fire, or check to make sure the door is locked over and over again because of their fear of someone breaking in; the list goes on and on.

These compulsions aren't carried out to make them "feel good", but as a way to "fight" their obsession(s). By doing compulsive things, they may feel as if they're getting some sort of "relief" from their obsessions. Many times people will feel uncomfortable with their obsessions and doing the compulsive rituals may help them feel a bit better.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder can begin in childhood and persist through to middle age. Many people suffering from OCD do understand that it's all in their minds, and that they are being irrational but those who don't understand, have what is called OCD with poor insight. Some people with OCD manage not to let it bother them in everyday life, but some have trouble functioning in extreme cases and need professional help. They can also harm themselves physically by doing things such as hair pulling, nail biting or excessive scratching. Quite a few people with OCD can also end up with substance abuse problems.

No one knows for sure what causes Obsessive Compulsive Disorders but it does not seem to be hereditary. It can be triggered in many different ways in different people. Unfortunately OCD is under diagnosed and not everyone gets the treatment for OCD that they need. There are mental health professionals who know how to help people with OCD disorders and quite often people with OCD can also be given a prescription to anti-anxiety medicine that can help tremendously, even in bad cases.

If you believe that you may have some sort of OCD and it is interfering with your life, contact a mental health professional right away to learn about your options for getting help.
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