Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health condition where people get caught in a cycle of unwanted thoughts and compulsive behaviors that affect daily life. OCD is a chronic mental health condition that affects people of all ages. At Children Psych in Orange, California, Long Beach, California, and Phoenix, Arizona, our providers provide comprehensive mental health care for patients struggling to manage their OCD. To get help, call the office or schedule an appointment online today. Telehealth visits are also available.
What is obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)?
OCD is a long-term mental health disorder. People with OCD have uncontrollable and recurring thoughts (obsessive) that cause anxiety. This anxiety triggers a behavior (compulsive) they feel the need to repeat over and over again to release the thoughts and anxiety.
Though it’s not uncommon to have obsessive thoughts or compulsive behaviors from time to time, if you have OCD these thoughts and behaviors are severe and disruptive to daily life.
What are the symptoms of OCD?
Symptoms of OCD may include obsessions, compulsions, or both.
Obsessive symptoms are recurring thoughts, images, or urges that trigger anxiety or cause feelings of disgust. Though people with OCD may recognize that their obsessions are excessive, their distress prevents them from handling the obsession logically.
You may try to ignore the obsessive thought or distract yourself with other activities. Or, you may engage in compulsive behaviors to ease the anxiety and distress caused by your obsessive symptoms.
Fear of germs and the need for order are examples of obsessive symptoms.
Compulsive symptoms are repetitive behaviors or acts a person with OCD feels the need to do to ease their anxiety or distress, or to prevent the obsessive thought altogether. These compulsive responses to the obsessive thoughts may also be excessive.
Excessive hand washing and the constant need to rearrange items are examples of compulsive behaviors. Though there’s nothing wrong with thoroughly washing your hands or arranging items to make them neat, with OCD these behaviors consume many hours of the day.
What causes OCD?
OCD affects children, teens, and adults. Researchers are still learning about what causes OCD, but they’ve identified risk factors, including genetics and environmental factors such as childhood trauma.
Abnormalities in brain structure and function may also play a role in the development of OCD. However, more research is needed to better understand the connection between brain structure and OCD.
How is OCD treated?
The team at Inland Empire Behavioral Group customizes your OCD treatment plan to best meet your needs. Treatment for OCD may include medication, therapy, or both. They can adjust your plan as needed to help you gain control over your OCD symptoms and improve your quality of life.
OCD is a serious mental health condition that can interfere with daily living. To get help for your OCD, call Inland Empire Behavioral Group or schedule an appointment online today.