What Causes OCD?

Obsessive compulsive disorder which is known for short as OCD is a type of mental. The people suffering from it check on an activity all the time. They will usually keep on checking whether things are done correctly or not. For example, a normal person will double check whether the gas stove is off but the person with OCD will perform multiple checks. The disorder is generally characterized by uncontrollable thoughts and ritual behaviors.


The exact cause of OCD has not been identified yet but there are some triggers which are believed to cause it. Some of the triggers are:


Genetics are believed to play a major role in the onset of obsessive compulsive disorder. There are many research studies which suggest that it occurs due to the inherited genes, which affect the development of the brain. If OCD is known to run in the family then any person in the family will have high risk of suffering from this condition. The studies on genetics have also shown that OCD is related to other conditions like tics and Tourette’s syndrome.

Brain Abnormalities

People who are suffering from obsessive compulsive disorder will have some abnormalities in some parts of their brain. The list includes increased activity and also increased blood flow. Low levels of serotonin are also observed in patients diagnosed with the disorder. If specific areas of the brain are affected then the emotions of the person may get out of control. This condition can be treated however. A person can return to the normal behavior with the help of cognitive behavioral therapy.


Serotonin is the chemical which plays an important role in triggering OCD. It is the chemical which is present in the brain and is responsible for transferring the signals from one brain cell to another. It is also responsible for regulating many other functions of the body like mood, anxiety, memory and sleep. People with OCD tend to have a lower level of the chemical in their brain and this is the main reason for the symptoms of the condition including the behavioral ones. This problem can be treated with medications like antidepressants, which help for increasing the level of the serotonin chemical in the brain.

Life Events

Some important life events like break up with the family or sudden death of a loved one can trigger the onset of obsessive compulsive disorder. If people with the disorder have to go through such an episode, the symptoms of their condition will get worse. Another important trigger is the stress. This stress will make the symptoms of OCD worse and so people should try to reduce the stress in their lives.


There are many reports which state that children and young adults may get OCD after a severe infection. This is because the anti-bodies will react with the brain and will reduce the serotonin levels.

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