OCD awareness

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a disorder of the brain and behavior. OCD causes severe anxiety in those affected. OCD involves both obsessions and compulsions that take a lot of time and get in the way of important activities the person values.Patients with the disorder recognize that their thoughts and behaviors are excessive and unreasonable, and they struggle to resist them.Research suggests OCD may be the result of certain inherited genes that affect the development of the brain.

Although no specific genes have been linked to OCD, there is some evidence that suggests a person with OCD is more likely to have another family member with the condition compared with someone who does not have OCD.

However, it is possible there may sometimes be other reasons for this. For example, it has been suggested some people may “learn” OCD as a result of witnessing other family members with the condition.

Brain differences

Brain imaging studies have shown some people with OCD have differences in certain parts of their brain, including increased activity and blood flow, and a lack of the brain chemical serotonin.

The areas of the brain affected deal with strong emotions.

Life events

OCD may be more common in people with a history of having experienced emotional, physical or sexual abuse, neglect, social isolation, teasing or bullying.

An important life event, such as a bereavement, family break-up, a new job, pregnancy or childbirth, may also trigger OCD in people who already have a tendency to develop the condition – for example, because of genetic factors – and may affect the course of the condition.

Stress seems to make the symptoms of OCD worse, but does not cause OCD on its own.

Personality

People with certain personality traits may be more likely to have OCD. For example, if you are a neat, meticulous, methodical person with high standards – a “perfectionist” – you may be more likely to develop the condition.

OCD may also be a result of simply being more prone to becoming tense and anxious than most people.OCD is a familial condition.People having ocd must be treated with patience and care.

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