What is OCD?

Mental illnesses are not something to be joked about. OCD is one of these mental illnesses that many people perceive differently.

“I think OCD is when someone is trying to be very organized.” Alexandra Wolff (8) said.

In reality, it is a much harsher disorder that can cause many problems in the life of those who it affects.

OCD stands for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Simply put, it is when obsessions lead to compulsive acts. An obsessive thought can lead to anxiety. To relieve this anxiety, a compulsive behavior is performed. Examples of compulsive behaviors include excessive double-checking of things, such as locks, appliances, and switches, repeatedly checking in on loved ones to make sure they’re safe, counting, tapping, repeating certain words, or doing other senseless things to reduce anxiety, spending a lot of time washing or cleaning, ordering or arranging things “just because”, praying excessively or engaging in rituals triggered by religious fear, and accumulating “junk” such as old newspapers or empty food containers.


“Your mind depends on getting everything right,” Skye Kramer (8) said. “Everything has to be perfect.”

OCD can have many different effects on lives. For one, OCD can cause severe life dominating compulsions. Because of this, many patients with OCD cannot live normally because they have the feeling to wash their hands so many times or have to drive by their house every hour to make sure it’s not on fire. It also has no specific cure.  Many use psychotherapy or medications but others end up living with it for the rest of their lives.  

Krissy McDermott in an article about OCD for The Mighty  stated “OCD is like having a bully stuck in your head, and nobody else can see it.”

A common myth about OCD is that any neat freak has OCD. OCD is a mental disorder. A person can be neat and still not have OCD. It is an anxiety disorder, and it’s not something everyone just has because they are neat. OCD is not a quirk, like being clean and organized. In fact, it is hurtful to those who have to live with this everyday and hear these things.

OCD is often violated by society. Many do not know the affects that it has on lives in the world. In the future, we need to treat this situation properly and be more respectful as a group in our community.