Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

The hallmark of OCD is recurrent obsessions (unwanted intrusive thoughts) and/or compulsions (unwarranted repetitive behaviors), which are distressing, consume considerable time, and interfere with normal functioning. The obsessions are disturbing to the person and the compulsions when resisted lead to a rising tide of anxiety, which is alleviated by performing the resisted behavior. Some researchers talk about an OCD spectrum encompassing, Tourette’s syndrome, eating disorders, compulsive-addictive behaviors (drugs, alcohol, sex, gambling), body dysmorphic disorder, hypochondria, trichotillomania (compulsive hair pulling), phobia, social anxiety, and olfactory reference syndrome (the belief that one’s body is emitting bad odors). These are grouped together because of the obsessive-compulsive process while having different psychosocial content.