Is OCD Genetic?
Obsessive-compulsive disorder, commonly abbreviated to OCD, is a mental disorder that greatly impacts those affected by it. More specifically, it is a mood disorder with many complex facets. Those who have obsessive-compulsive disorder must deal with intrusive thoughts and compulsive (often harmful, or at least not beneficial, counter actions). These symptoms are very disruptive to human functionality. There are many theories as to why some people get OCD, but a final answer has yet to be determined. One possible option that researchers consider is that the mental condition may have genetic components.
- Fear of hurting oneself or others
- Fear of germs (contamination)
- Violent intrusive thoughts
- Extreme religious preoccupation
- Need for symmetry and order
- Intense superstition
- Constant double-checking
- Excessive praying
- Counting, tapping, or word repetition
- Obsessive washing and cleaning
- Frequent, specific arranging of items
Obsessive-compulsive disorder has been examined to be genetic to some extent. Those who have close relatives with the disorder have a predisposition that increases the likelihood of developing OCD. Medicine News Today states that when individuals have a first-degree relative with obsessive-compulsive disorder, they have a 7-15% higher risk of having the mental illness themselves. Other research has estimated the rate to be even higher, with one study concluding it to be 32.5%, says Medicine News Today. Furthermore, another study found that those who had a relative with early-onset obsessive-compulsive disorder (before the age of 18) were 13.8% more likely to develop OCD than those whose family member(s) got the disorder after 18 years of age, notes Medicine News Today
Lastly, to try to answer the question, Is OCD genetic?, scientists studied the rate of occurrence in sets of identical twins. Apparently, genes play a greater role when the condition begins in childhood rather than adulthood. When a child who is an identical twin has OCD, the other twin has a 45-65% chance of developing OCD; this percentage decreases to 27-47% when the onset occurs during adulthood, says The International OCD Foundation.
Los Angeles OCD Clinical Research
As the source of obsessive-compulsive disorder is not fully understood, treatment for OCD does not include elimination of the condition altogether. Rather, medications for OCD, along with other management techniques, aim to reduce symptoms, as well as enable patients to gain control of their disorder. However, Los Angeles clinical trials are consistently underway and allow researchers to look for the best possible treatment for OCD, and perhaps even a cure. This portion of clinical research requires the assistance of volunteer participants, who act as test subject for various experimental treatments.
Taking part in clinical research may have many benefits for those with obsessive-compulsive disorder. The greatest of these benefits is the possibility that individuals may be among the first select few to receive an innovative treatment for OCD; whether it be new medications for OCD or other solutions. People who partake in clinical research have the chance of receiving a viable treatment before the general public. In the event that the treatment is not useful, people will still be under the care of medical professionals until the study’s end (as well as for follow-up assessments). Additionally, people who choose to volunteer take a proactive approach to their own health. Lastly, clinical trials are free to take part in, and people are often compensated, as well.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder is a complex disease that can be difficult to live with. There is a potential that the illness is, in part, due to genetic predisposition. For those who have OCD or have a relative with it, this information can be useful. Knowing the risks allows people to make pre-emptive, informed decisions about the health and wellbeing of themselves and loved ones.
If you are interested in enrolling in Los Angeles clinical studies for OCD, contact the Pacific Institute of Medical Research, which is an independent clinical research site specializing in psychiatry since 1982. Visit us online or call us at (310) 208-7144.