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For many people, obsessive compulsive disorder is something that can easily be dismissed, thinking that certain uncontrollable obsessions and compulsions are very minor and do not need medical attention. A lot of us laugh at the thought that a friend has OCD, or even find it silly that he or she has it, because we have this misconception that it is not a serious problem.
Let us debunk this misconception now. Obsessive compulsive disorder is an affliction that needs serious help, that’s why it is called a ‘disorder’. If it were something that was very minor, it would not have been labeled such. OCD is a problem that has to be addressed at the onset of the symptoms, or else it could escalate into something that is mentally, physically, and emotionally damaging.
First off, we identify what obsessions and compulsions are. Obsessions are the unwarranted fears and anxieties people feel over particular things. Examples of obsessions include the fear of germs, the mania to perform a certain task a certain way or to arrange things in a particular and measured manner, and the fixation over a certain type of paper in paperback books, among others.
On the other hand, compulsions are the responses to the obsessions. For instance, if the person is scared of germs, he or she might be compelled to wash his or her hands repeatedly when he or she uses a public restroom. Or if he or she likes a certain type of paper for his or her books, he or she might forego buying even his or her favorite author’s newest novel because he or she does not approve of the paper quality. Things like that.
When we think about OCD on the surface, everything sounds very silly. However, underneath it all, there exists a very big problem. Relationships and lives have been damaged because some people could not get hold of their obsessions and compulsions.
Where does OCD come from? Obsessive compulsive disorder has not known cause, but researches have shown that it can be genetic, although the kind of obsessions or compulsions are not necessarily the same. Studies have found that if a family member has OCD, it is likely that his or her children will have some form of OCD, too.
Another cause of obsessive compulsive disorder is the way we were brought up. Our orientations and background dictate how we respond to certain stimuli. Thus, if we have OCD, there might be something wrong with how we react to particular events or activities. Consultation with a psychologist will help us pinpoint where the problem lies.
People do not normally admit that they are suffering from OCD because they think it’s not serious. Also, they think that getting help for OCD is a waste of resources. It is not. As said earlier, OCD can escalate to something very destructive if not addressed.