Flashcards in OCD Deck (10):
What are Obsessions?
Recurrent, persistent and intrusive thought, image or impulse that causes anxiety
Not simply excessive worries
Person attempts to ignore, suppress or neutralize them with other thought/action
Recognized as product of person’s own mind
Consistent cross-culturally and across life-span
Tend to be ego-dystonic (are in conflict with the person's ideal self-image)
Can take the form of extreme doubting, procrastination, and indecision. Unable to function.
Most people with OCD keep the content and frequency of their obsessions secret for many years
What are some common obsessions?
fears of harming oneself or others
lack of symmetry
sexual or religious thoughts
What are compulsions?
Repetitive behavior or mental act performed in response to obsession or according to rigid rule
Aimed at reducing or preventing distress or preventing occurrence of feared event.
The activity is not realistically connected with its apparent purpose and is clearly excessive.
What are common compulsions?
cleaning and washing
Related - Hoarding
What are characteristics of OCD?
Obsessions OR Compulsions
Insight: at some point, person recognizes as excessive or unreasonable (not in children).
Distress/impairment: time consuming (i.e., they take more than 1 hour a day) or cause marked distress or significant impairment.
Specificity: If other disorder present, content of obsessions/compulsions not restricted to it.
What are the key features of OCD?
Compulsions reduce anxiety
Fear something terrible will happen to themselves or others around them.
What are the psychosocial theories of OCD?
Thought-action fusion – Inflated sense of responsibility
(1) the mere act of thinking about unpleasant events increases the perceived likelihood that they will actually happen;
(2) at a moral level, thinking something unpleasant (e.g., imagining hurting others) is the same as actually having carried it out.
Cognitive biases: attentional distortions,
Paradoxical effect of thought suppression
What are the biological theories of OCD?
Moderate genetic contribution
Dysfunctional orbitofrontal-caudate-thalamic pathway
Hypothesized to be related to increased serotonin
However, 40-60% of OCD clients treated with SSRIs do not show improvement
Encephalitis, head injuries, and brain tumors associated with the development of OCD
PET scan studies shown increased activation in the frontal lobes
There is a link to the basal ganglia; a system linked to the control of motor behaviour
Tourette ’s syndrome is marked by both motor and vocal tics and has been linked to basal ganglia dysfunction.
People with Tourette ’s often have OCD as well
What are the treatments for OCD?
Exposure - Response prevention
Can be an effective treatment, but
Slow effect (6-12 weeks)
High relapse rates
Neurosurgery for cases with intractable OCD