Image for Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

Related Terms

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Background

  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a potentially disabling anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders are characterized by an unpleasant complex combination of emotions often accompanied by physical sensations such as heart palpitations (arrhythmias or irregular heart beat), nausea, angina (chest pain), shortness of breath, tension headache, and nervousness. Symptoms of OCD can lead to generalized anxiety.
  • OCD can be debilitating, and is composed of two anxiety-related features: obsessions (undesirable, recurrent, disturbing thoughts) and compulsions (repetitive or ritualized behaviors).
  • An individual with OCD has intrusive and unwanted thoughts and repeatedly performs tasks to get rid of the thoughts. For example, individuals with OCD may fear that everything they touch is contaminated with germs, and in order to ease that fear, they repeatedly wash their hands. It is noted that these activities must interfere with daily function and quality of life before OCD is diagnosed.
  • The effects of OCD range from mild to severe. OCD can disrupt an individual's social life and relationships as well as their ability to work, make a living, or go to school.
  • Further content available for subscribers only.

Risk Factors

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Causes

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Diagnosis

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Complications

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Treatment

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Integrative Therapies

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Prevention

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Author Information

  • Content available for subscribers only.

References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

  • Content available for subscribers only.
The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.