The research paper by (Williams, Taylor, Himle, & Chatters, 2017), describes OCD to be a behavioral disorder and mental illness which leads to the development of a high degree of anxiety on the infected individuals. The anxiety as a result of OCD manifests itself in the form of compulsions and obsessions which takes control of the life of the affected individual. The study relates links to our topic of study as the document has a high probability of appearing in a psychiatric peer-reviewed document or a course on psychology. The research paper identifies and evaluates the affliction facilitated by OCD with the intention of understanding the mechanism of the disorder.
Importance of OCD
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a matter of importance as noted by the International OCD Foundation (IOCDF) to be a distressing and overwhelming feeling experienced by the affected individuals. According to the IOCDF, OCD is described as the mind of an individual constantly stuck on a certain image or thought which is continuously replayed in the person's mind no matter the action they take to avoid the thoughts. OCD consumes the majority of the patient's time leaving them with insufficient time to undertake other activities for their personal growth. That culminates to the patient not enjoying their life to the fullest, hence leading a rather dull and low-quality life. Presence of anxiety should work to alert an individual on imminent danger; therefore, the individual experiencing instances of anxiety can react accordingly and seek protection. OCD is significant as; usually, the anxiety trigger does not pose an actual danger to the patient; thereby, a sufficient amount of time is wasted to try and mitigate the virtual danger. The disturbing preoccupation of thoughts and images in the patient's mind may include intense emotions which are negative. The intense negative emotions include; a) Fear, b) Disgust, c) Constant feeling of things not going according to plan, and d) Doubt. OCD is a manifestation that the system in the patient's brain is working abnormally, hence the matter needs to be addressed with the contempt that it deserves.
The study carried out included samples of Black Caribbeans, non-Hispanic Whites, and African Americans. The field work was undertaken by the Institute of Social Research in collaboration with the Program for Research on Black Americans. The sample from the African American participants was the primary sample used during the study. The primary sample units from the African Americans made up 64 primary sampling units.
Majority of the interviews in the study were undertaken in a face-to-face manner, comprising 86 percent of data collection. The rest of the interview, 14 percent, was undertaken remotely by the use of telephone calls. The mode of instruction during the interview was the English language which was facilitated by personal interviews assisted by a computer. Either of the interviews undertaken lasted about two and a half hours. The total number of interviews conducted was 6,082, and the participants included 891 non-Hispanic Whites, 1621 Black Caribbean, and 3,570 African Americans. The final responses of the two-phase design were evaluated by the use of the American Association of Public Opinion Research guidelines.
The Dependent Variables in the diagnostic assessment of mental disorders was undertaken by the use of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-IV). However, since no previous records of OCD were present due to the diverse manifestations of the illness, the CIDI-SF diagnostic module was used instead. Here, the questions evaluating the presence of compulsions and obsessions are considered as the dependent variables. Independent variables include demographic variables such as gender, age, income, marital status, and self-rated oral health.
The median age of the respondents was found to be 42 years, whereby 44 percent were male. The average age of education by the respondents was determined to be 12.43 years, and the median income per family was $36,832. The percentage of the married individual or those engaged was identified to be 42 percent. Based on African Americans, 1.6 percent met the characteristics of OCD illness. However, the amount of obsessions varies from one individual to another. In general, 12.5 percent of the African Americans were identified to be having some obsession, whereas, 15.3 percent reported to be experiencing some compulsion.
I agree with the author's sentiment that the persistence of OCD is higher in African Americans as compared to any other race. That is due to the socio-economic discrepancies building barriers, hence hindering the access to quality medical care by the African Americans suffering from OCD. From the findings, there exists a lower rater of OCD illness among the elderly population. I agree with the author as OCD illness is associated with high mortality rates. Therefore, the elderly population is less prone to OCD when compared to the younger demographic.
The point of concern about the study include; lack of sufficient investigation on all common OCD symptoms, the study was not undertaken by a medical practitioner and the comprehensive evaluation of the symptoms of OCD in African Americans. Research on various topics is done to bring forth information which can be beneficial to society. Therefore, the lack of sufficient investigation on OCD does not provide enough knowledge to develop the previously current diagnosis and treatment techniques of mental illness. Moreover, since a clinician did not conduct the research, the integrity of the entire study is questionable and not sufficiently reliable. However, the research is significant since it is the first of its kind to thoroughly study OCD prevalence across different races, especially among the African Americans where such a study has never been undertaken.
Williams, M., Taylor, R., Himle, J., & Chatters, L. (2017). Demographic and health-related correlates of obsessive-compulsive symptoms among African Americans. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6072272/
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