What is obsessive-compulsive disorder (DOC)?

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Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is part of the category of Anxiety Disorders. DOC is characterized by obsessions and / or compulsions. A high percentage of people suffer from Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. People who suffer from this disorder pass their lives to constantly fight with their own thoughts and impulses that create an alarm, fear and force to implement repetitive behaviors or mental actions. The main aspects of DOC can be summarized in …

Obsessive characterized by …

  • Thoughts, impulses or recurring and persistent images, experienced by the person as disturbances, inadequate and intrusive, which cannot expel and which lead to an intense anxiety and discomfort.
  • Create a constant state of alarm and anxiety.
  • You realize that thoughts, images, and impulses are a product of your own mind.

The obsessions are out of the control of the subject and are lived as senseless and unfounded.

Compulsive characterized by …

  • Behaviors or repetitive mental actions that the subject feels obliged to implement in a very rigid and unwanted way.

Among the repetitive behaviors, we find: having to wash your hands continuously and without need, the duty to rearrange the objects following a certain rigid pattern and always equal, the duty to control more and more times the completion of an action.

Among the mental actions we find: praying, counting, repeating words, phrases or formulas, mentally.

  • Behaviors and mental actions have the function of neutralizing dreaded events and are not realistically connected with what they are meant to neutralize.

Compulsions are also called ceremonial or rituals and are put in place to try and keep an eye on their anxiety.

Obsessions and compulsions usually occur comfortably in the subject. In rare cases, they are isolated, or just obsessions or just compulsions. Subjects with DOC have excessive concern for dirt and contamination. They worry about being contaminated or contaminating others. They are obsessed with the germs and the idea of being able to contract some infectious disease. They fear losing control of their own impulses or being able to hurt someone. DOC strikes indiscriminately by age and sex and may appear in critical periods of life: childhood, adolescence, or early adulthood. It may appear suddenly, usually following a stressful or gradual, subdued and insidious event, progressively aggravating.


Psychotherapy is the treatment of choice. It helps to shape the experiences and emotions that are at the origin of the disorder. It also helps internalize strategies to replace current thinking mechanisms that lead to illness.

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