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How do you self-test for OCD?

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Quick Answer

In order to know whether you or someone else suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder, a trained medical professional must test for and diagnose the illness. Obsessive-compulsive disorder is an anxiety disorder characterized by obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.

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Full Answer

Self-tests are not an accurate assessment of whether or not someone has obsessive-compulsive disorder. There are a number of symptoms to be aware of if someone thinks that she may suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder. Examples of obsessive behavior include obsessions, repeating thoughts and fears relating to germs and dirt, states the National Institute of Mental Health. Obsessions may also be in the form of intrusive thoughts, such as thoughts of harming loved ones, committing violent acts, committing blasphemous acts or committing sexual indiscretions. Intrusive thoughts are repeated, unwanted thoughts that a person suffering from OCD cannot control.

Compulsions are repetitive behaviors that often occur in response to intrusive thoughts as a way to alleviate anxiety caused by the thoughts, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. A common example of obsessive-compulsive cognitions and behaviors is repeatedly washing one's hands to alleviate a fear of germs or dirt. OCD is no longer considered an anxiety disorder, and is instead believed to be a unique type of disorder, WebMD states.

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