Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Strep This article is adapted with permission from the Children’s and Adult Center for OCD and Anxiety. Founded and directed by Tamar Chansky, PhD, a leading expert on anxiety and OCD, the […]
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Overview
More than 3 million people in America are diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Anxiety often accompanies OCD and close to 20 million are estimated to experience clinical anxiety.
Both are medical illness that affect behavior, and are treatable conditions. Like other disorders involving the brain and the nervous system, symptoms can range from mild, brief symptoms to severe and chronic symptoms that can disrupt lives, careers, and relationships.
People with OCD and various types of anxiety experience irrational, excessive, and upsetting thoughts. There is a feeling of being out of control, and this reaction is difficult to cope with. While genetics can be involved, environmental factors and life experiences play a significant role.
Both obsessions and compulsions are present in OCD. With obsessions, people experience involuntary repeated and persistent ideas or impulses. Compulsions are behaviors that are repeated over and over in an attempt to reduce the anxiety associated with the obsessions.
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