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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Gender

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is diagnosed based on an individual’s experience of persistent and recursive thoughts and repetitive behaviors. Individuals diagnosed with OCD can have either obsessions or compulsions, but most people have both. Obsessions are thoughts that are intrusive to one’s awareness and that generate anxiety, whereas compulsions are actions performed repeatedly and focused on alleviating the anxiety generated by the undesired preoccupations. Some common obsessions are concerns about contamination, hoarding, grooming, religion, or physical issues. Compulsions that are prevalent include checking, ordering, counting, and washing. The interplay of obsessions and compulsions can create debilitating consequences in people’s relationships, careers, families, and ability to live independently.

Within the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), OCD is clustered with related disorders including hoarding ...

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