What is Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)? When does this happen in your life? What does it feel like? What are some causes? When does it show up? How does it affect us? What are the results of this? Lets YAC about it!
Defined by Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA):
"Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental illness. It’s made up of two parts: obsessions and compulsions. People may experience obsessions, compulsions, or both, and they cause a lot of distress."
So.. What Does This Mean?
What an incredible journey it has been learning about this and discovering what deeply plagues me most moments. In my own words, it means you develop unwanted obsessions you feel guilty or disturbed about. It doesn't have to be as intense as it sounds - it could be that you're obsessed with color coding your closet and you just really wish you wouldn't be. So what you do is develop compulsions to deal with the unwanted obsessions. Basically, they're like rituals or patterns you have to carry out to decrease your anxiety about your obsessions. It's so multi-faceted, but extremely calculated which I think is why people who have OCD are stereotyped as being very neat and organized. CAN I GET A HANDS UP FOR MY OCD-ERS IN THE BACK!!!!!!
What Causes Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) ?
Suffice it to say, we don't really know. Like many other mental illnesses, we don't yet have a firm grasp on a finite cause for OCD. It could be a variety of things from compulsions being learned behaviors, to genetics, to chemical imbalances to distorted beliefs helping to induce symptoms of OCD. One or more of those variances could be causing OCD.
What Are The Symptoms?
- fear of contamination
- thoughts of doubt
- fear of accidentally harming self or other
- need for symmetry/exactness
- repugnant obsessions
- checking compulsions
- ordering/arranging compulsions
- mental rituals
- need to ask or confess
How Is It Treated?
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) seems to be a top contender for most mental illnesses and OCD is no different. Attempting to train the way you think and react to certain things. Through counseling, you can learn new ways of coping as you practice skills to manage OCD. Support groups have been a recommended source of therapy and coping. As always, medication is a listed treatment ... and don't be afraid to share your story with us through YAC AT US
Let's YAC About It!
If you have even the slightest inkling you may have developed or been born with OCD I highly recommend continuing your research about this fascinating illness. As I recommend for anything you're the slightest bit curious about. Check out Rebecca's most recent blog about Keeping The Conversation Going
which she wrote while writing and researching this blog. We'll be YACing about how Obsessive Compulsive Disorder impacts us and times when we have experienced some or all of the symptoms above. This blog is an introduction to a four-part series and our last installment will introduce all sorts of resources and ways to find the help you need. Thank you again for everyone who got to this point- and again, don't be afraid to YAC about it
Disclaimer: We are not medical professionals and are not able to provide licensed medical advice. This is a platform to relay information and share about mental illness.
OBSESSIVE-COMPULSIVE DISORDER(Anxiety Canada, 2018): Anxiety Canada. (2018). Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. [online] Available at: https://www.anxietycanada.com/adults/obsessive-compulsive-disorder [Accessed 31 Dec. 2018].
OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER (OCD) - CMHA NATIONAL (CMHA National, 2018)CMHA National. (2018). Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) - CMHA National. [online] Available at: https://cmha.ca/documents/obsessive-compulsive-disorder-ocd [Accessed 31 Dec. 2018].
OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER (Betterhealth.vic.gov.au, 2018) Betterhealth.vic.gov.au. (2018). Obsessive compulsive disorder. [online] Available at: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/ConditionsAndTreatments/obsessive-compulsive-disorder [Accessed 31 Dec. 2018].