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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

SNOMED Terms

 

  • Obsessive compulsive personality disorder

  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder

 

Goals

  • Reduce the frequency, intensity, and duration of obsessions.

  • Reduce time involved with or interference from obsessions and compulsions.

  • Function daily at a consistent level with minimal interference from obsessions and compulsions.

  • Resolve key life conflicts and the emotional stress that fuels obsessive-compulsive behavior patterns.

  • Let go of key thoughts, beliefs, and past life events in order to maximize time free from obsessions and compulsions.

 

Behavioral Definitions

 

  • Intrusive, recurrent, and unwanted thoughts, images, or impulses that distress and/or interfere with the client's daily routine, job performance, or social relationships.

  • Failed attempts to ignore or control these thoughts or impulses or neutralize them with other thoughts and actions.

  • Recognition that obsessive thoughts are a product of his/her own mind.

  • Repetitive and/or excessive mental or behavioral actions are done to neutralize or prevent discomfort or some dreaded outcome.

  • Recognition of repetitive behaviors as excessive and unreasonable.

 

Diagnoses

  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

  • Anxiety Disorder NOS

  • Major Depressive Disorder

  • Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder

What is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)?

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a mental health disorder characterized by recurring, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and repetitive behaviors (compulsions) that a person feels driven to perform. Here's a breakdown of OCD:

Symptoms:

Obsessions: These are persistent and intrusive thoughts, images, or urges that cause anxiety or distress. Common obsessions include:

  • Fear of germs or contamination

  • Fear of harm to oneself or others

  • Unwanted thoughts about taboo or violent acts

  • Need for things to be symmetrical or orderly


Compulsions: Repetitive behaviors or mental acts that a person feels driven to perform in response to obsessions or to reduce anxiety. Compulsions can include:

  • Excessive cleaning or handwashing

  • Checking things repeatedly (e.g., locks, doors, stoves)

  • Counting rituals

  • Ordering or arranging things in a specific way

  • Mental compulsions (e.g., praying silently to prevent harm)

 

Important Points:

People with OCD recognize that their thoughts and behaviors are excessive or unreasonable, but they feel powerless to resist them.
OCD can be time-consuming and interfere significantly with daily life, work, and social interactions.
The severity of OCD symptoms can vary from person to person.

Effects of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Here's a closer look at the potential consequences of OCD:

Disrupted Daily Life: The repetitive behaviors (compulsions) associated with OCD can be very time-consuming, interfering with daily activities like work, school, household chores, and social interactions.

Reduced Productivity: OCD can significantly reduce a person's productivity at work or school due to the time spent obsessing and performing compulsions.

Social Isolation: The fear of being judged or the embarrassment of compulsions can lead people with OCD to withdraw from social activities and isolate themselves.

Relationship Strain: OCD can strain relationships with family, friends, and romantic partners. Loved ones may not understand the compulsions or become frustrated by the repetitive behaviors.

Anxiety and Depression: The constant worry and stress associated with obsessions can lead to anxiety and depression.

Low Self-Esteem: Feeling unable to control intrusive thoughts or repetitive behaviors can negatively impact a person's self-esteem.

Financial Strain: In severe cases, OCD can lead to financial difficulties if compulsions involve buying excessive cleaning supplies or needing to repeatedly redo tasks (e.g., constantly checking if the door is locked).

How does Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) affect your life?

Here's how OCD may affect individuals' lives based on general knowledge:

Intrusive Thoughts and Obsessions: These obsessions can take various forms, such as fears of contamination, doubts about safety or morality, or a need for symmetry or order.

Compulsive Behaviors: These behaviors are repetitive and time-consuming and may include actions like handwashing, checking, counting, or arranging items in a particular way. 

Impact on Relationships: The preoccupation with obsessions and compulsions may lead to social withdrawal, difficulty maintaining friendships, or strained relationships due to the demands of OCD-related behaviors. 

Work and Academic Performance: Individuals may experience difficulty concentrating, meeting deadlines, or completing tasks efficiently. 

Emotional Well-being: Living with OCD can take a toll on emotional well-being, leading to feelings of shame, guilt, embarrassment, or frustration. 

Financial Impact: The financial impact of OCD can result from expenses related to treatment, such as therapy, medication, or hospitalization. 

Treatment Challenges: Stigma, lack of awareness, or financial barriers may prevent individuals from seeking help, delaying diagnosis and intervention.

Overall, OCD can have profound and wide-ranging effects on individuals' lives, impacting their relationships, work, emotional well-being, and overall quality of life. With appropriate treatment and support, individuals with OCD can learn to manage their symptoms and lead fulfilling lives.

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