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Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health condition. This type of disorder happens when parts of the brain cannot communicate well with each other. People with OCD have obsessions or compulsions, or both. Obsessions are unwanted and distressing thoughts, ideas, or urges that keep entering your mind. You may find yourself trying to ignore them. You may try to stop or undo them with a compulsion.
Compulsions are repetitive physical or mental acts that you feel you have to do. They may reduce or prevent any anxiety, but in most cases, they do not help. Compulsions can take a lot of time to do, often more than one hour each day. They can interfere with personal relationships and usual activities at home, school, or work.
OCD can begin in childhood, but it usually starts in young adulthood and continues throughout life. Many people with OCD also have depression or another mental health condition.
The cause of this condition is not known.
Everyone at times will repeat a behavior or check something again. However, people who have OCD feel that they do not have any control over their repeat thoughts or compulsive behaviors.
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
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