“Man, I need to stop being so OCD. I just spent an hour orienting the painting on my wall.”
“That’s it? I have a niece who is like that she keeps fidgeting and washing her hair 10000 times a day. I just tell her to go bald or something. Attention seeker supreme.”
“Holy shit, tell me about it. How about we go have some chai tea? Being the idiots that we are, it would be appropriate if we went to drink something that translates to tea-tea.”
“Never gonna say no to that.”
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
Obsessive compulsive disorder like other mental disorders is often misunderstood. It is something that happens when new information is mainstreamed in various cultures. People start identifying with the symptoms and often call themselves “OCD” or “depressed” or, as the new trend is, “anorexic”. Over-diagnosing by people and not professionals is something that is becoming a menace but is a topic of discussion for another day but today we are going to focus on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and some important things it encompasses.
OCD is about intrusive and unwanted thoughts in your mind that cause anxiety about some possible impending doom. The obsession is an unwanted thought, impulse, image or fear that takes an irrational form in our mind. They are intrusive and often take up a lot of time in the daily life of the sufferer. Despite knowing that these thoughts are irrational, the sufferer feels compelled to do some rituals to get rid of the anxiety associated with these obsessions. These rituals are called compulsions and may lead to a temporary relief from the anxiety. Despite the temporary relief, the compulsions act as reinforcers of the obsession in the long run.
Myths about OCD.
OCD, like other mental illnesses, is surrounded by myths and misconceptions among the general public.
MYTH: WE ARE ALL “A LITTLE BIT OCD” AT TIMES.
While many people can have obsessive or compulsive traits, OCD stands for obsessive compulsive disorder, and people who are diagnosed with it cannot simply “turn it off.” Research has shown that their brains are wired differently than the brains of people without it, and as such it strongly influences their thoughts and actions.
MYTH: Compulsive behaviors make OCD obvious to others
A person who has a bad thought may feel the need to recite a specific phrase several times in order to alleviate the anxiety. It’s a compulsion, sure, but no one else around the person would ever realize what’s going on. If a ritual is psychological and is related to some particular thoughts, we cannot see them manifest physically except for the rage or anxiety they may cause.
MYTH: OCPD is the same as OCD.
OCPD stands for Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder. It is often confused with OCD because of similar sounding names. OCPD is characterized by the people not being particularly distressed by their obsessions and rituals. Unlike OCD sufferers, people with OCPD see their lifestyle as an ideal one with no requirement of improvements. They don’t believe that there is anything wrong with them and actually want other people to follow the same lifestyle as well.
OCD is clearly a disorder which leaves the people dilapidated behind it. It makes people anxious about seemingly the tiniest things and yet it is drastic for the sufferer. Sufferers often turn to self harm or suicidal tendencies. It is a distraction from the emotional turmoil that they go through every day. A battle with the mind and is often called ‘the doubting disease’. It is indeed a chronic, but also a very treatable medical condition. It is time that we start recognizing its existence and lend a helping hand to people who need it.