Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by
either obsessions or compulsions:
Obsessions as defined by:
- Recurrent and persistent thoughts, impulses, or images that are
experienced, at some time during the disturbance, as intrusive and
inappropriate and that cause marked anxiety or distress
- The thoughts, impulses, or images are not simply excessive worries
about real-life problems
- The person attempts to ignore or suppress such thoughts, impulses,
or images, or to neutralize them with some other thought or action
- The person recognizes that the obsessional thoughts, impulses, or
images are a product of his or her own mind (not imposed from
without as in thought insertion)
Compulsions as defined by:
- Repetitive behaviors (e.g., hand washing, ordering, checking) or
mental acts (e.g., praying, counting, repeating words silently) that
the person feels driven to perform in response to an obsession, or
according to rules that must be applied rigidly
- The behaviors or mental acts are aimed at preventing or reducing
distress or preventing some dreaded event or situation; however,
these behaviors or mental acts either are not connected in a
realistic way with what they are designed to neutralize or prevent
or are clearly excessive
--- AND: ---
At some point during the course of the disorder, the adult has
recognized that the obsessions or compulsions are excessive or
unreasonable (not applicable to children).
The obsessions or compulsions cause marked distress, are time
consuming (take more than 1 hour a day), or significantly interfere
with the person's normal routine, occupational (or academic)
functioning, or usual social activities or relationships.
If another disorder is present, the content of the obsessions
or compulsions is not restricted to it.
The disturbance is not due to the direct physiological effects of a
substance (e.g., a drug of abuse, a medication) or a general medical
« Disorders Index
By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on
9 Oct 2013
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.
As a man thinketh in his heart, so he is.