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obsessive-compulsive disorderObsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health disorder in which people have recurring, unwanted thoughts, ideas, or sensations (obsessions) that make them feel compelled to do something repetitively (compulsions). To be diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder, these repetitive behaviors have to significantly interfere with an individual’s daily activities and social interactions.

We all have distressing thoughts and repetitive behaviors at times. However, for most of us, those thoughts and actions do not disrupt our daily life. For individuals with OCD, thoughts and behaviors become incredibly rigid, causing great distress if they do not perform repetitive behaviors.

These repetitive behaviors could be overly frequent hand-washing, repeatedly checking if the door is locked, verifying the oven is turned off, or clearing and organizing areas in a particular way. Everyone is unique and will present individual obsessions and compulsions. An outsider may view these obsessions as unrealistic or unreasonable, but for those with OCD, the experience can be stressful, overwhelming, and life-consuming.

Underlying Causes

For many people, there tend to be accompanying disorders and underlying causes that manifest as OCD. Research has shown that those who have experienced trauma or abuse are at a higher risk of developing the disorder. Additionally, OCD is often accompanied by other conditions such as depression, anxiety, body dysmorphia, or substance abuse.

Seeking Help

Sometimes our obsessions and our compulsions have no apparent reason or purpose. It can be difficult to understand why we feel the way we do or why we do what we do when struggling with OCD. When we do not address the disorder, it can increase our distress and cause our discomfort to heighten. Seeking the help of a professional can help to shed light on our actions and our feelings. You may find that keeping a journal helps track patterns or situations that can trigger OCD. You can keep track of your thoughts, actions, and surroundings throughout the day. The more information you can give to a mental health professional, the better they can help you work through any struggles you face and make sure that you are receiving the right treatment for your condition.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) can take over an individual’s life if left untreated. It can cause distress and hardship, especially when accompanied by other disorders. Learning about the underlying conditions behind OCD can help determine a proper diagnosis and treatment method to help address these mental health challenges. Here at The Guest House, we are ready to help you gain the skills you need to face any challenge you may be experiencing. Call us today to learn more about our treatment options and how we can help you at (855) 483-7800.