OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER (OCD)

 

In the latest revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM V), OCD was removed from the Anxiety Disorders into a separate class. Nonetheless, people who experience this disorder do frequently experience considerable distress which is often anxiety-based.

OCD (as the name suggests) has two core components - obsessions and compulsions. Individuals with OCD, will therefore experience significant obsessions or compulsions or both. Obsessions are considered to be reoccuring thoughts, impulses, or images that are intrusive or unwanted and trigger excessive anxiety or distress for the individual. Compulsions are repeated behaviours (for example hand washing or checking rituals) or mental activities (for example counting) that the individual with OCD feels must be completed usually in order to reduce distress or prevent a bad situation from occurring. For adults, the person understands that the obsessions or compulsions are excessive. For children, however, this level of insight is often absent. 

If you would like practical psychological strategies to overcome OCD, David McLaurin Clinical Psychologist in Berwick can help.

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