Robina 7 Day Doctors and Acupuncture recommends this link on OCD:
Many of us will have used the expression “I’m being a bit OCD” when we’ve gone back to check that the front door is locked. However, the reality for people with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is very different and much more challenging.
Sufferers can experience anxious, intrusive thoughts such as being convinced that they have caused an accident or that family members are contaminated. These are called ‘obsessions’; and they lead in turn to ‘compulsions’ – ritualistic behaviours that sufferers perform in the hope of finding relief from their obsessions (such as excessive washing and cleaning).
Like many medical conditions, OCD can get worse if left untreated.
The first step is to recognise the condition. There are some common thoughts or behaviours the sufferer may experience, and may often know are irrational. These can include:
- an intense fear of causing harm to oneself or others
- intrusive or disturbing thoughts or images
- a dread of mess or contamination
- repetitive ritualistic behaviour
OCD can be very difficult to spot as sufferers may hide their symptoms because of feelings and thoughts of guilt or shame or embarrassment.
So if you think you know somebody who might have OCD, what should you do about it? Steps that can help are to talk to them about it, in an understanding and non-judgmental way. Or to invite them to talk about it, being there to listen and suggesting they get professional help if they need it. Although it can be difficult to raise the issue, it can be a crucial first step to treatment and recovery.
The symptoms of OCD can be extremely distressing and even frightening to the sufferer and to others. But it is generally not a dangerous condition. With expert help, most sufferers can expect to improve and recover.
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