View Full Version : Ocd vs anxiety?


picard
09-03-15, 08:55 AM
How is anxiety different from ocd? I am confused

dvdnvwls
09-03-15, 12:19 PM
Extremely over-simplified, but hopefully not wrong:

OCD always has the components mentioned in its name: obsessions and compulsions. An obsession is a disturbing thought pattern the person experiences, and a compulsion is an action pattern that the person designs to counteract the obsession. Each person with OCD has a set of obsessions that keep recurring, and therefore a corresponding set of compulsions that they keep having to do. (The set might be large or small, but it's somewhat stable; a person generally doesn't just get random new obsessions all the time. They may have a new one from time to time that gets added to the set, or some other one that goes away, but it's not randomly changing all the time.)

Anxiety has disturbing thoughts of course, but they don't work the same way.

BellaVita
09-03-15, 12:27 PM
If I'm in a particularly anxious mode, I do get new obsessions...or compulsions. Like I'll suddenly feel the urge to check something I haven't checked before.

Also, it's irrational fears. Like the most common example - washing hands over and over because of a fear of germs.

We often know we're being irrational, but can't stop the compulsion anyway.

peripatetic
09-03-15, 12:50 PM
for me personally, the difference is:

having intrusive disturbing images/thoughts that i then attempt to mitigate/make sure don't happen through behaviors that become obsessive-compulsive. that's pretty vague, i realise, but i'm not keen on getting super specific on this random thread on the open forum.

vs

panic attacks that i attempt to mitigate by avoiding places, people, etc, etc, etc ...anything associated or thought to trigger them, until my world becomes quite small.


medication and CBT have been helpful for both. the CBT groups are different, however, for the different things. and it took me, i'd say at least six months of weekly or twice-weekly groups that focus on interroceptives, plus medications to deal with the agoraphobia and different medication plus different weekly groups for the ocd.

hope that helps.

Little Missy
09-03-15, 12:55 PM
I tend to be extremely hyper-vigilant.

bldt
09-03-15, 01:23 PM
for me personally, the difference is:

having intrusive disturbing images/thoughts that i then attempt to mitigate/make sure don't happen through behaviors that become obsessive-compulsive. that's pretty vague, i realise, but i'm not keen on getting super specific on this random thread on the open forum.

vs

panic attacks that i attempt to mitigate by avoiding places, people, etc, etc, etc ...anything associated or thought to trigger them, until my world becomes quite small.


medication and CBT have been helpful for both. the CBT groups are different, however, for the different things. and it took me, i'd say at least six months of weekly or twice-weekly groups that focus on interroceptives, plus medications to deal with the agoraphobia and different medication plus different weekly groups for the ocd.

hope that helps.
Was wondering CBT group better then individual? Also what are interroceptives.
Thanks.

peripatetic
09-03-15, 01:35 PM
Was wondering CBT group better then individual? Also what are interroceptives.
Thanks.

eh...i don't know. i kinda LOATHE groups, but they are helpful in the whole "feeling less alone with the struggle" bit. and you also talk in groups about your situation and hear others and do that grid thing (feared outcome vs probability/likely outcome) with those, and it is kinda helpful to see that what you fear will come to pass has a very low percentage of happening and then doesn't. and also, you can see what others are concerned about and when you're able to do the grid with theirs, it's like, maybe mine's not so different. if that makes sense.

what can suck though is if you're in a group where you feel like you don't relate to the people. i was in one where i was the only one with agoraphobia. that sucked and i switched. one other time, since i also have another mental illness completely...well, that my anxiety issues are secondary to...and i found it hard to relate to people who were strictly dealing with anxiety/panic/ocd/depression and had no experience with my issues. again, once i found the right groups, it was super useful.


interroceptives are these exercises you do that provoke or mimic symptoms of panic attacks.

so, for example, there's one where you breathe through a tiny straw (like, a red coffee stirrer) for a minute. it mimics shortness of breath. if that's one of your panic symptoms, then it's like, you're exposing yourself in a controlled setting to that, but "staying with it" and seeing that whatever your fear is with respect to panic doesn't come to pass; e.g. you don't die, nobody else dies, whatever.

i can find one of the sheets if you want; i'm sure i have one somewhere. other ones were to mimic elevated heart rate, dizziness, elevated body temperature, .... you know, the BIG one for me is shortness of breath, so those are the ones i remember best as had the hardest time with. there are maybe ten to twelve exercises though. you do them together and then rate your level of difficulty and level of anxiety and so forth...and you do this thing where you talk about what the expected outcome/feared outcome was and what the actual outcome was. anyway, hope that helps.

dvdnvwls
09-03-15, 01:59 PM
If I'm in a particularly anxious mode, I do get new obsessions...or compulsions. Like I'll suddenly feel the urge to check something I haven't checked before.

Yes - but you aren't always randomly dropping all of them and randomly getting lots of new ones, and the categories they fall into are pretty well defined. You have a recurring group of things that are fairly stable (at least in a medium-term sense) and even when you get new ones they tend to fit into categories that are predictable based on the ones you've had before.

Greyhound1
09-03-15, 02:13 PM
How is anxiety different from ocd? I am confused

OCD is classified as an anxiety disorder.

Key Similarities and Differences between OCD and GAD (General Anxiety Disorder)

The similarities between the disorders are that both produce significant experience of anxiety and both involve persistent worries. The key differences are in thought process and behaviors. Although people with GAD have some recurrent worries, the range of worrying is broad and not confined to one area, whereas people with OCD often worry and obsess about one or a handful of specific things. Furthermore, people with GAD do not exhibit the ritualistic compulsions as a way to cope with worrying as people with OCD do.

BellaVita
09-03-15, 02:20 PM
Yes - but you aren't always randomly dropping all of them and randomly getting lots of new ones, and the categories they fall into are pretty well defined. You have a recurring group of things that are fairly stable (at least in a medium-term sense) and even when you get new ones they tend to fit into categories that are predictable based on the ones you've had before.

Yeah its usually the same categories, checking locks, checking caps of different objects, repeated opening/closing of drawers and things that have that ability to open/close, checking for crumbs or dirt in different areas, opening and closing a bag or anything that has that ability over and over, checking corners in my room, tapping on something a number of times (can be different items), counting while I do different tasks etc.....

I hate it because when the anxiety gets worse, then the OCD gets worse.