Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
One kind of anxiety disorder is obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). This disease can ruin a person's life because it causes them to have repetitive thoughts and behaviors towards certain things. Life can become very difficult because this way of thinking and acting is very difficult to overcome, especially since the obsessions have no point and are stressful for the person. It begins to interfere with the person's school, work, and/or home.
Obsessions are the unpleasant thoughts or impulses that cause the person with the disorder to have lots of anxiety and edginess. The thoughts may include things such as perfect order of things in a house, perfect hygiene, or the fear that they are going to hurt someone. Obsessions can be violent or sexual.
Compulsions are the behaviors that relieve the person of anxiety temporarily. If the obsession is perfect hygiene, the compulsion could be washing hands constantly. Compulsions can also be checking on something over and over again, including repeating phrases to calm themselves down. Basically, they are the everyday "rituals" that the person goes through.
There are many theories as to where the obsessive-compulsive disorder originated. People used to believe that OCD was caused by the experiences in the patient's childhood. For example, parents putting unnecessary force on the child for a clean environment. Scientists have learned that it is due to more than just childhood experiences. They have realized that the disorder is caused by the environmental stresses, neurobiological factors, and even what the patient recognizes as being right or wrong.
People with OCD show differences in brain activity compared to other people. They also have less white matter in the brain than normal people. These results have been obtained using brain-imaging machines.
Victims of OCD may also have other diseases. Some have Tourette's...