OCD - Don't suffer in silence

What is obsessive compulsive disorder?

OCD is a serious mental illness that affects 1-2% of the population.

Its effects are so severe the World Health Organisation identifies OCD as one of the top 10 major disabilating illnesses in the world.

Personality - People with OCD often have high standards and feel responsible for others. They may be adverse to taking risks and often like certainty.

Symptoms and behaviour - Persistant thoughts, urges or images pop into their mind. These may relate to fear of contamination regarding dirt, germs, bodily fluids or dangerous material, doubts about harm occurring to others or excessive concern about exactness, order or symmetry.

Sufferers experience extreme anxiety, become fearful with doubt and worry and may seek reassurance from others. These thoughts, beliefs and anxiety lead to the development of repetitive actions that they believe help manage these thoughts and beliefs.

Checking, taps, windows and equipment dealing with gas/electric is the most common behaviour. A sufferer could also display repetitive actions like washing or bathing, mental rituals such as special prayers or words in a set manner. Others may align or arrange objects in a certain pattern or order or may count when doing a certain activity

Cognitive behavioural therapy and SSRI medication (if needed) is the recognised treatment of choice. Support groups can prove helpful. Some people may be too embarrassed to seek help. Consider what is is worse - getting treatment or to continue suffering?

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