Abnormal Psychology

explanatory Essay
2413 words
2413 words

Lucinda, a twenty-year-old college female, has been performing time-consuming cleaning behavior. Her diagnosis is obsessive-compulsive disorder based on DSM IV-TR criteria. The essential features of this disorder are recurrent obsessions and compulsions that can be either of the following: a) severe and to the point of being time-consuming and taking up more than 1 hour of the day or b) causing significant lifestyle impairment that interferes with a person’s normal routine, occupational or academic functioning, or social activities and relationships (Barlow & Durand, 2012).
Lucinda’s case fits this criterion because she has impairment of academic functioning. She repeatedly is late to class, misses multiple class periods every semester, and ends up having to drop classes every semester due to her obsessional fear of germs and her compulsive cleaning of her house and bathroom delaying her arrival to class. In addition to the time-consuming cleaning rituals she performs, her relationships are beginning to strain and become impaired, as she has been secluding herself from social events with friends and family. She has a great concern that restaurants and her friends homes are not be clean enough and she fears she would come in contact with germs.
Lucinda suffers from one of the most common types of obsessions: fear of germs/contaminants. Her obsession with germs consumes most of her day in the form of anxiety and these intrusive and persistent thoughts fit the criteria for the obsession part of the disorder as stated in DSM-IV-TR. In addition she tries to calm these impulsive thoughts by cleaning extensively in an effort to suppress her fear of germs and contaminants. Even though she uses hand sanitizer multiple times throu...

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Foa, E. B., Liebowitz, M. R., Kozak, M. J., Davies, S., & al, e. (2005). Randomized, placebo-controlled trial of exposure and ritual prevention, clomipramine, and their combination in the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder. The American Journal of Psychiatry, 162(1), 151-61. doi: 10.1176/appi.ajp.162.1.151

Real, E., Labad, J., Alonso, P., Segalàs, C., Jiménez-Murcia, S., Bueno, B., Subirà, M.,
Vallejo, J. & Menchón, J. M. (2011). Stressful life events at onset of obsessive–compulsive disorder are associated with a distinct clinical pattern. Depression and Anxiety, 28, 367–376. doi: 10.1002/da.20792

Rosso, G., Albert, U., Asinari, G. F., Bogetto, F., & Maina, G. (2012). Stressful life events and obsessive-compulsive disorder: Clinical features and symptom dimensions. Psychiatry Research, 197(3), 259-264. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2011.10.005

In this essay, the author

  • Cites foa, e. b., liebowitz, m. r.
  • Explains that the american journal of psychiatry, 162(1), 151-61.
  • Explains that lucinda, a twenty-year-old college female, has recurrent obsessions and compulsions that consume most of her day in the form of anxiety.
  • Explains that stressful life events at onset of obsessive-compulsively disorder are associated with a distinct clinical pattern.
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