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Obsessive-compulsive Disorder (ocd), Obsessive-compulsive Personality Disorder, Treatments For Obsessive-compulsive Illnesses

The main concern of psychiatrists and therapists who treat people with compulsions is the role they play in a mental illness called obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Compulsions need to be distinguished from obsessions in order to understand how they interconnect with compulsive behavior and reinforce this debilitating illness.

In psychiatric literature, compulsions are defined as repetitive behavior, such as hand washing, counting, touching, and checking and rechecking an action (like turning the light off and on again and again to be sure it is off or on). Performing the specific act relieves the tension of the obsession that the light may not be on or off. The person feels no pleasure from the action. On the contrary, the compulsive behavior and the obsession cause a great deal of distress for the person.

Compulsive behavior also needs to be distinguished from excessive or addictive behaviors where the person feels pleasure from the activity, such as in compulsive eating or compulsive gambling.

Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Cluster compound to Concupiscence