Surprising Truths About Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Jan 30, 2023 By Madison Evans

You've undoubtedly met a perfectionist who has their closet organized by color scheme or a germaphobe who always has a supply of hand sanitizer. However, these peculiarities may not always indicate the presence of OCD. OCD is an anxiety condition.

People truly don't get it, The author, who is 36 years old, has dealt with OCD for much of her life. She claims that most people aren't trying to be hurtful; they don't understand.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Is a Very Serious Mental Illness

To to the American Psychiatric Association: "People with OCD have repeating, undesirable thoughts, ideas, or feelings (obsessions) that make them feel motivated to do something repetitively (compulsions) to feel in control" (APA).

Obsessions are unwanted and intrusive thoughts, desires, or impulses that individuals strive to ignore or repress but ultimately fail to do so. People with OCD often feel forced to engage in ceremonial rituals, known as compulsions. They risk experiencing severe worry and terror if they don't follow through.

Overreaction to everyday thinking characterizes obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). A person with OCD may, for example, be chronically late because they must repeatedly return home to double-check that they closed the door.

Many Have OCD

Only 1.2% of American adults, according to the NIMH. Diane Davey, a registered nurse and the program director of the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Institute at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts, stated, "It's not an exotic sickness; it's fairly prevalent."

Furthermore, it is a disease that equally affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds. Most people have at least one acquaintance who suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder. People with OCD may have difficulty hiding their compulsive thoughts and actions.

Anxiety Disorders Are Serious

Some believe that OCD is a character flaw, like being a neatnik or a control freak. They could dismiss OCD as a funny tic, despite the distress it causes.

Jack Nicholson plays an OCD author in the 1997 romantic comedy As Good As It Gets, who, among other things, has a routine of not walking on cracks. The darker aspect of life that people with OCD have to experience is lacking in this delightful novel.

Davey argued that this was one of the most widespread misconceptions concerning OCD. People who suffer from this condition share significant emotional discomfort.

OCD Is An Anxiety Disorder, Not a Mental Illness

People with OCD may experience intrusive, repetitive thoughts, but they do not share a loss of reality on par with those who have schizophrenia.

Los Angeles-based writer, director, and producer Ethan Smith has battled obsessive-compulsive disorder for quite some time. His inability to reign in suicidal thoughts and feelings resulted in three different stays in mental hospitals.

Doctors felt I was mad," Smith told Health about a period when he was so sick. On the other hand, he claimed superior knowledge. Whatever the OCD portion of your brain is saying you or thinking, the healthy part of your brain understands it's irrational, as stated by Smith.

OCD Is Greater Than a Phobia of Germs

The APA states that the obsessions of those who suffer from OCD are quite diverse. People particularly sensitive to dirt and sweat may feel driven to take frequent showers or scrub their hands repeatedly.

At the same time, others worry about being powerless, hurting others, or being sick. In the case of perfectionists, who feel that everything must be just so before they can relax, this may manifest as a need to perform symmetrical body movements repeatedly.

Some people may be superstitious. Some people are troubled by inappropriate sexual or religious ideas. Smith claims his obsessions stem from childhood fears of suffocation. When he was at his weakest, he subsisted on mashed potatoes and chicken soup.

We're Not Talking About Soap and Water Here

Those who suffer from OCD feel the need to engage in ritualistic patterns of thought and action to alleviate the distress caused by their obsessions. The constant ritual of washing one's hands might be a welcome distraction from the ongoing concern that one is unclean. Some people acquire habits such as tapping their fingers three times before starting a task or verifying and double-checking their work.

Dotson, who suffered from both religious and sexual obsessions, stated that she overcame the former by praying frequently and the latter by avoiding circumstances in which she would make unwanted physical contact with others.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Affects Both Young and Old

The National Institute of Mental Health reports that OCD is usually identified by age 19, with a younger onset in males than females. As the author puts it, "women can acquire OCD in the setting of pregnancy, either during pregnancy or immediately after giving birth. Davey stressed the need not to make assumptions about a child's age while discussing OCD. She argued that "kids might have a lot of ritualistic behaviors and routines that are comforting to them, and it does not always indicate they have OCD."

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