Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) - What Happens
obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), you develop
disturbing, obsessive thoughts that cause fear or anxiety. In order to rid
yourself of these thoughts and relieve the fear, you perform rituals, such as
repeated hand-washing or checking that something has been done. Unfortunately,
the relief is only temporary. The thoughts return and you repeat the
The rituals or behaviors become time-consuming and have a
significant impact on your daily life. If your particular fear involves
unfamiliar situations, it is possible for you to become so obsessed by the
fears that you stop going outside of your home. Quality of life can be
substantially lowered by OCD since it can greatly affect your ability to work
and have relationships.
Sometimes recognizing hypochondria takes a little time.
It wasn't until Rebecca Serrano (not her real name) had been married for a
full year that she realized her new husband had a problem. Once, he was
convinced he had testicular cancer -- but he wouldn't go to the doctor. Another
time, when he got a sinus infection, he thought it was a brain tumor.
"This anxiety literally led him to feel more pain than a normal person would
feel. He had panic attacks and was in such a slump over any minor...
Many people are too embarrassed by their
symptoms to seek treatment, and they go for years before seeing a doctor.
Symptoms of OCD can be reduced with treatment.
OCD can have a
negative effect on those who care about you. Family members can become angry
and frustrated at the strain the rituals or behaviors put on them. Talk to your
doctor about ways your
family members can help with OCD.