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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders

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Throughout history, there have been many different names people assigned to mental illnesses. The first conceptualization of disorders was coined by Hippocrates, who stated that an imbalance of humoral biles led to different diseases (Taylor & Vaidya, 2009). This was where the first concept of melancholia originated, where black bile seemed to overpower the other humors. Over time, melancholia grew to mean more than just sadness, but sadness along with mania. It covered a variety of disorders that involved emotions and actions, including obsessions and compulsions (Taylor & Vaidya, 2009). Manic disorders were then considered to be a type of hysteria, which was linked to women’s disorders. In 1918, during the time of the Spanish flu,…show more content…
In the first issues of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), obsessions and compulsions – and then later obsessive-compulsive disorder – were under the category of anxiety disorders. Since then, the DSM has been changed to include a separate category called “Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders” (Ameringen, et al., 2014). This is due to the fact that there are many different factors that differ between anxiety disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder, including “course of illness, comorbidity, familiarity, genetic risk factors and biomarkers, personality correlates, cognitive-emotional processing, and treatment response” (Ameringen, et al., 2014, p. 488). These differences are critical for showing the discrepancy between these…show more content…
These signs may appear in a regular conversation between the clinician and the patient, as well as in the daily life of the patient. According to the Obsessive Compulsive Cognitions Working Group (as cited by Polman, et al., 2010), to properly diagnose the patient with obsessive-compulsive disorder, one must look for some of the following signs and symptoms: “overimportance of thoughts, perfectionism, inflated responsibility, overestimation of threat, and intolerance of uncertainty” (p. 2). These are signs of obsessions, which if they recur can lead to major distress for the patient (Soltanifar, et al., 2016). Clinicians may also look for any comorbidities that may occur, since they are very common in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (Ameringen, et al. & Rintala, et al., 2014, 2017). The severity of the disorder may be measured by different fears – which show themselves through obsessions – as well as unwanted impulses – which show themselves through compulsions (Ameringen, et al., 2014). Some patients may not believe they have the disorder, and instead may view it as an addiction, since addiction and obsessive-compulsive disorder share the same cognitive symptoms. They both show signs of “reward dysfunction” (Grassi, 2016, para. 3), which is a lessened reward system in the brain, causing a greater severity of the
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