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            Obsessive-compulsive disorder, also known as OCD causes people to suffer in silence and .
             secrecy and can destroy relationships and the ability to work. It may bring on shame, ridicule, .
             anger, and intolerance from friends and family. Although it has been reported in children, it strikes .
             most often during adolescence or young adult years. The illness can affect people in any income .
             bracket, of any race, gender, or ethnic group and in any occupation. If people recognize the .
             symptoms and seek treatment, OCD can be controlled. .
             OCD plagues people with intrusive, unwanted thoughts or obsessions, which are rarely pleasant. .
             People who have these obsessions recognize that they are senseless. Still, they are unable to .
             stop them. They may worry about becoming contaminated by dirt or germs and believe they will .
             be tainted by touching doorknobs or common objects. Others may fear becoming violent or .
             aggressive, or they may have an unreasonable fear they will unintentionally harm people. Some .
             may struggle with blasphemous or distasteful sexual thoughts, while others become overly .
             concerned about order, arrangement or symmetry. .
             In an attempt to ease the anxiety related to their obsessions, people often develop ritualistic .
             behaviors, called compulsions. Often, these reflect the patient's obsessions. For example, an .
             obsessive fear about contamination often leads to compulsive hand washing, even to the point .
             where the person's hands bleed. Others repeatedly touch a specific object or say a name or .
             phrase in response to an obsession. An extreme and intrusive fear of making mistakes on the job .
             may result in a person completing tasks extremely slowly, even to the point that the job is never .
             finished. Obsessions may also result in compulsive collecting of useless items such as .
             magazines and newspapers until they clog entire rooms of homes and endanger occupants' .
             safety. .
             The most common of many compulsions are washing and checking.

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