The INTERFACE Referral Service is aware of some service issues with our 888-244-6843 number. We are working to resolve this as quickly as possible. If you are having trouble reaching us at this number, please contact us at our local number, 617-332-3666, where our team will be happy to help you. We appreciate your patience.

We at the William James College INTERFACE Referral Service are keenly aware of the shortage of mental health providers of color and how racial inequities exist in medical and mental health care. The College’s Black Mental Health Academy, Center for Multicultural and Global Mental Health, and other programs and academic offerings are playing a critical role in reversing this trend. We invite you to read a statement from our Black Mental Health Graduate Academy Scholars, and to stand with us as allies to drive change and address systemic racism.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Hoarding

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Hoarding

 

At INTERFACE Referral Service, we focus on connecting members of our communities with mental health providers. We also value the importance of learning about the mental health conditions that may be affecting your thinking, feeling, behavior, or mood.

Therefore, we have created "Mental Health Topic Pages". The majority of our topic pages will direct you to Network of Care Massachusetts! Network of Care Massachusetts has a library database of over 30,000 fact sheets and articles. Topics on behavioral health issues are written by leading experts and organizations in their fields.

 

WHAT IS OBSESSIVE-COMPULSIVE DISORDER (OCD)?

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a type of mental illness that causes repeated unwanted thoughts. To get rid of the thoughts, a person with OCD may also do the same tasks over and over. For example, you may fear that everything you touch has germs on it. So to ease that fear, you wash your hands over and over again.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?

Symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder tend to come and go over time and range from mild to severe. Anxiety is the most common symptom. For example, you may have an overall sense that something terrible will happen if you don't do a certain task, such as check again and again to see if the stove is on. If you fail to check, you may suddenly feel tense or anxious or have a nagging sense that you left something undone.

Symptoms of the disorder include:

  • Obsessions. These are unwanted thoughts, ideas, and impulses that you have again and again. They won't go away. They get in the way of your normal thoughts and cause anxiety or fear. The thoughts may be sexual or violent, or they may make you worry about illness or infection. Examples include:
    • A fear of harm to yourself or a loved one.
    • A driving need to do things perfectly or correctly.
    • A fear of getting dirty or infected.
  • Compulsions. These are behaviors that you repeat to try to control the obsessions. Some people have behaviors that are rigid and structured, while others have very complex behaviors that change. Examples include:
    • Washing, or checking that something has been done.
    • Counting, often while doing another compulsive action, such as hand-washing.
    • Repeating things or always moving items to keep them in perfect order.
    • Hoarding.
    • Constant praying.

Source: Network of Care Massachusetts

To learn more, visit these Network of Care Resources:

 

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Phobias

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: Should I Take Medicine for OCD?