Problems Related to OCD

Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)

BDD affects about 2% of the American population, manifesting at the same rate in men and women. People with BDD imagine that they have physical defects that others cannot see and/or focus excessively on minor defects, like a scar or high hair line, for up to eight hours a day. BDD preoccupations cause the individual significant distress in all areas of functioning. A subtype of BDD is muscle dysmorphia, which affects mainly men. Muscle dysmorphia is considered to be the reverse of anorexia because the person thinks that they are physically too small. This belief may lead people to engage in excessive exercise, steroid abuse and/or padding of their clothes.1

For more BDD information and treatment options, you may go to the Body Image Program at Butler Hospital website link:


is a disorder which involves individuals pulling hair from their scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows and/or pubic region. Trichotillomania occurs mostly in women, and in extreme cases may lead to baldness, causing an individual to have to wear a wig, hair extensions or fake eyelashes in order to cover up bald spots. Individuals claim that pulling hair feels good and is often the only way that one knows how to relieve stress.2

For more information, you may explore the Trichotillomania Learning Center Online website link:

Tourette’s Disorder

Tourette’s disorder is characterized by involuntary motor and vocal tics, which are rapid movements or sounds that are repeated in effort to relieve built up tension. Tics are sometimes referred to as a “psychic itch”. Examples of tics include: eye rolling, coughing, throat clearing, licking lips, squealing, yelling, leg jerking and many more. 11 Sometimes tics and compulsive behavior look similarly; however, they are not the same. Compulsions are performed in order to relieve anxiety created by an obsession. Tics are behaviors performed in order to relieve built up tension, like scratching an itch.

For more information on Tourette’s Disorder, referrals, support groups, and research studies you may access the Massachusetts Chapter of the Tourette’s Syndrome Association website link:


  1. Wilhelm, Sabine. Overcoming BDD with CBT Strategies. Obsessive Compulsive Foundation of Greater Boston: Les Grodberg Memorial Lecture Series at McLean Hospital. Belmont, MA. April 3, 2007.
  2. Baer, L. (2000). *Getting Control: Overcoming Your Obsessions and Compulsions.* New York: Plume, 157.
  3. Tourette’s Disorder: Information, Support, Hope. (2004). Tourette Syndrome Symptoms. Retrieved August 28, 2007 from the World Wide Web: