ocd

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

April 25th, 2014 | SNFC

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Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) affects approximately 1 – 2% of the population with young adults between the ages of 18 – 24 facing the highest risk of being diagnosed.

OCD involves both obsessions and compulsions.

Obsessions are unwanted often disturbing thoughts, images, or impulses which enter the mind suddenly. Obsessions can vary or range in severity depending on the person. These can include fear of contamination, thoughts of doubt, excessive fear of causing an accident or harm to self or others, a strong need for symmetry or exactness.

These occur frequently and individuals with OCD state that they often feel they have little control over them. Obsessions can cause a great deal of anxiety which generally influences and leads to compulsive behaviour.

Compulsions are behaviours (such as excessive hand washing or checking on things) or mental acts (such as counting or repeating words or phrases) which are performed as an attempt to alleviate the anxiety or stress.

Obsessions can vary or range in severity depending on the person. These can include fear of contamination, thoughts of doubt, excessive fear of causing an accident or harm to self or others, a strong need for symmetry or exactness.

These occur frequently and individuals with OCD state that they often feel they have little control over them. Obsessions can cause a great deal of anxiety which generally influences and leads to compulsive behaviour.

Compulsions can include washing and cleaning compulsions or checking compulsions, such as repeatedly making sure doors are locked or checking to ensure others’ safety as a means to avoid harm or stress. Other compulsions include hoarding, having the need to confess, constant ordering or arranging compulsions, mental rituals or persistent negative thoughts.

If an individual spends a great deal of time thinking about specific obsessions , has significant fear and anxiety or attempts to avoid situations which cause anxiety or compulsive behaviour, his/her daily life can be significantly interrupted or impaired.

For more information, please contact the Special Needs Foundation of Cayman.

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