Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

by: Ally H. TB: 2

What is it?

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder is a type of anxiety disorder where people become preoccupied with whether something could be harmful, dangerous, wrong or dirty. They also take these feelings to extreme.

Signs and Symptoms


always washing hands (red hands from this)

reorganizing room, desk, etc.

rituals (urge to do something repeatedly)

compulsions: make sure bad things will not happen


excessive worrying

strong urge to do something repeatedly

obsessions: preoccupied worrying about whether something could be harmful, dangerous, wrong or dirty

Signs and symptoms may vary depending on patient's obsessions and how they respond to those obsessions/ compulsions

How does it affect someone?

A person may take excessive amounts of time doing compulsions

(not just extra little things, but taking a lot of time out daily routine)

Person tries to hide compulsions from others

Other names or forms?

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder is most commonly known as OCD.

How is it diagnosed?

Patients may go to a doctor, possibly, specifically a psychologist or psychiatrist and will get asked questions such as...

Do you have worries, thoughts, images, feelings, or ideas that bother or upset or scare you?

Do you feel you have to check, repeat, ask, or do things over and over again?

Do you feel you have to do things a certain number of times, or in a certain pattern?

How is it treated?

You can get cognitive- behavioral therapy

talk therapy exposure and ritual prevention allow people to face fears in a safe way and not do compulsions

Interesting facts?

Experts believe OCD is related to levels of normal chemical in the brain called serotonin. When the flow of serotonin is blocked the brain's "alarm system" overreacts and misinterprets information.

OCD tends to run in families