Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
By: Sarah Young
What Is Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) causes people to have
unwanted thoughts or obsessions that cause them to do something repetitively,
also known as a compulsion (1).
What are the different types of OCD?
There are four main categories of OCD. They are:
Ruminations / Intrusive Thoughts (6).
How can it impact individuals lives?
Obsessive-compulsive disorder will soon take up all the time
in an individual’s life.
An individual with OCD will be able to do nothing else but
worry about the obsessions and compulsions.
Patients with OCD are often not able to live life to it’s
fullest, because the disorder takes away most of their day.
The disorder can be very troubling to friends and family
Ways to cope with OCD
Focus your attention on something else.
Anticipate your OCD compulsions.
Face your fears.
If you have a worry, write it down (1).
Who is at Risk?
Anyone could develop OCD, but certain factors in your life
could increase the risk of developing OCD. These factors are:
Your Family History. Having parents or grandparents with OCD
may increase your risk of developing it also.
Life events. If you have had a stressful experience in your
life, your risk of developing OCD may increase.
Mental health disorders. Having other mental health
disorders increases your risk of developing OCD.
At what age does OCD begin?
You can be diagnosed with OCD at any age, usually beginning
from preschool to adulthood.
The age of diagnosis tends to be earlier in males than in
Is OCD inherited?
OCD does often run in families, but genes are only partly
responsible for OCD, environmental influences and life experiences play a major
role in the development of OCD (6).
How is OCD diagnosed?
The diagnosis is made based on the patient’s symptoms by a
mental health professional.
There are is no imaging test to diagnose OCD (6).
Treatment cannot fully cure OCD, but it can help control
obsessions and compulsions .
Psychotherapy and medications can also help control OCD (3).
Where can I get treatment in my community?
The Local Doctor’s Office.
Support Groups in your neighborhood.
The OCD & Anxiety Treatment Center – (801) 298-2000.
Mindset Family Therapy – (801) 427-1054 (4).
How effective are OCD treatments?
Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors are proven to reduce symptoms
in about half of patients with OCD.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has also been shown to reduce symptoms.
Patients who respond to this therapy have reported a 60%-80% reduction in their
Resources available 24/7
Anxiety Hotline Number – Provides information and advice
about medical conditions (5).
Your Local Doctor’s Office
Can OCD go away on its own?
OCD cannot go away completely on its own, but getting
treatment may help reduce symptoms.
Gorrindo, Tristan, and Ranna Parakh. “What Is
“OCD Symptoms and Effects.” Timberline Knolls
Residential Treatment Center,
Melinda Smith M.D., and Jeanne Segal Ph.D.
“Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD).” Symptoms, Treatment, and
Self-Help for OCD,
“Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD).” Mayo
Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 17 Sept. 2016,
“Anxiety Hotline Number.” Mental Help Anxiety
Hotline Number Comments, May 25th 2017,
“Frequently Asked Questions about OCD.” Brain
& Behavior Research Foundation, 6 Oct. 2017,