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A brain region that is believed to play a critical role in OCD is the orbitofrontal cortex    (Kopell&Greenberg, 2008), an area of the frontal lobe involved in learning and decision-making (Rushworth, Noonan, Boorman, Walton,&Behrens, 2011) ( [link] ). In people with OCD, the orbitofrontal cortex becomes especially hyperactive when they are provoked with tasks in which, for example, they are asked to look at a photo of a toilet or of pictures hanging crookedly on a wall (Simon, Kaufmann, Müsch, Kischkel,&Kathmann, 2010). The orbitofrontal cortex is part of a series of brain regions that, collectively, is called the OCD circuit; this circuit consists of several interconnected regions that influence the perceived emotional value of stimuli and the selection of both behavioral and cognitive responses (Graybiel&Rauch, 2000). As with the orbitofrontal cortex, other regions of the OCD circuit show heightened activity during symptom provocation (Rotge et al., 2008), which suggests that abnormalities in these regions may produce the symptoms of OCD (Saxena, Bota,&Brody, 2001). Consistent with this explanation, people with OCD show a substantially higher degree of connectivity of the orbitofrontal cortex and other regions of the OCD circuit than do those without OCD (Beucke et al., 2013).

An illustration of the brain identifies the location of three areas and their associated disorders: the anterior cingulate cortex (hoarding disorder), the prefrontal cortex (body dysmorphic disorder), and the orbitofrontal cortex (obsessive-compulsive disorder).
Different regions of the brain may be associated with different psychological disorders.

The findings discussed above were based on imaging studies, and they highlight the potential importance of brain dysfunction in OCD. However, one important limitation of these findings is the inability to explain differences in obsessions and compulsions. Another limitation is that the correlational relationship between neurological abnormalities and OCD symptoms cannot imply causation (Abramowitz&Siqueland, 2013).

Conditioning and ocd

The symptoms of OCD have been theorized to be learned responses, acquired and sustained as the result of a combination of two forms of learning: classical conditioning    and operant conditioning    (Mowrer, 1960; Steinmetz, Tracy,&Green, 2001). Specifically, the acquisition of OCD may occur first as the result of classical conditioning, whereby a neutral stimulus becomes associated with an unconditioned stimulus that provokes anxiety or distress. When an individual has acquired this association, subsequent encounters with the neutral stimulus trigger anxiety, including obsessive thoughts; the anxiety and obsessive thoughts (which are now a conditioned response) may persist until she identifies some strategy to relieve it. Relief may take the form of a ritualistic behavior or mental activity that, when enacted repeatedly, reduces the anxiety. Such efforts to relieve anxiety constitute an example of negative reinforcement (a form of operant conditioning). Recall from the chapter on learning that negative reinforcement involves the strengthening of behavior through its ability to remove something unpleasant or aversive. Hence, compulsive acts observed in OCD may be sustained because they are negatively reinforcing, in the sense that they reduce anxiety triggered by a conditioned stimulus.

Suppose an individual with OCD experiences obsessive thoughts about germs, contamination, and disease whenever she encounters a doorknob. What might have constituted a viable unconditioned stimulus? Also, what would constitute the conditioned stimulus, unconditioned response, and conditioned response? What kinds of compulsive behaviors might we expect, and how do they reinforce themselves? What is decreased? Additionally, and from the standpoint of learning theory, how might the symptoms of OCD be treated successfully?

Summary

Obsessive-compulsive and related disorders are a group of DSM-5 disorders that overlap somewhat in that they each involve intrusive thoughts and/or repetitive behaviors. Perhaps the most recognized of these disorders is obsessive-compulsive disorder, in which a person is obsessed with unwanted, unpleasant thoughts and/or compulsively engages in repetitive behaviors or mental acts, perhaps as a way of coping with the obsessions. Body dysmorphic disorder is characterized by the individual becoming excessively preoccupied with one or more perceived flaws in his physical appearance that are either nonexistent or unnoticeable to others. Preoccupation with the perceived physical defects causes the person to experience significant anxiety regarding how he appears to others. Hoarding disorder is characterized by persistent difficulty in discarding or parting with objects, regardless of their actual value, often resulting in the accumulation of items that clutter and congest her living area.

Questions & Answers

what is general intelligence?
kiya Reply
there is no exact definition for intelligence. but some argues that it's organization of mental ability and how we use this ability in any particular situation..
gokul
what is application of humanistic theory of classroom
Afreen Reply
The humanistic learning theory developed further and harnesses the idea that if students are upset, sad, or distressed, they're less likely to be able to focus on learning. This encourages teachers to create a classroom
Dhwani
state the brief history of psychology
James
The history of psychology as a scholarly study of the mind and behavior dates back to the Ancient Greeks. ... Psychology as a self-conscious field of experimental study began in 1879, in Leipzig Germany, when Wilhelm Wundt founded the first laboratory dedicated exclusively to psychological research
Dhwani
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Shachi Reply
yes
Dhwani
please let me know
Shachi
sleep works in three hour stages. falling asleep rem, waking back up. do you have a spicific question?
Nathaniel
When thinking about getting the sleep you need, it’s normal to focus on how many hours of sleep you get. While sleep duration is undoubtedly important, it’s not the only part of the equation. It’s also critical to think about sleep quality and whether the time spent sleeping is actually restorative
Dhwani
sleep studies have proven that how you aproach your sleep sycle is important. people will constantly concern thwmselves with how much sleep instead of the quality of sleep they are getting. it is better to get 3 houts of sleepless rest then it is to get 6 of strained sleep
Nathaniel
I mean stages of sleep
Shachi
and it's explaination
Shachi
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Shachi
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Shachi
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Shachi
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Shachi
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Shachi
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Shachi
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Shachi
How brain power can be used to control physical things?
Ali Reply
can anyone explain sleep and it's stages?
Shachi
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for disorders of a circadian rhythm?
wazir Reply
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for disorders of circadian rhythm?
wazir
To study Abnormal Psychology means, to study mainly the nature of
Baddo Reply
abnormal psychology? can you explain please?
la
abnormal, this branch of psychology typically deals with behavior in a clinical context.
pakki
yo
Baddo
To study Abnormal Psychology means, to study mainly the nature of 1). Conscious Mind 2). Unconscious Mind 3). Subconscious Mind 4). Normal Mind
pakki
yo
Kylee
abnormal psychology- is the scientific study of Psychological disorders and their treatments
utkarsh
Utkarsh Verma can you help me pass out my exams? tomorrom
Baddo
10 - 11 MCQ test can you all or some help? the only subject I'm weak in is psychology
Baddo
which branch of psychology is the test on?
pakki
How Abnormal Behavior is Defined While it may seem that the definition of “abnormal” indicates a behavior that is considered outside of the human norm, it is actually a much slipperier slope. Therefore, abnormal psychology takes on the task of scientifically studying and classifying human behaviors
Anye
Yo
Monica
What is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for circadian rhythm disorders?
wazir
please I wish to find out how difficult/easy it is, for someone with a bachelor degree in philosophy to continue with masters and doctoral in psychology, specifically, I-O psychology.
Anye
do the individuals know that they are being researched on? and why does anyone speak up regarding the matter? is it "don't ask, don't tell" policy?
Stepphun Reply
examine any 5 perceptual principals of organization
kundai Reply
closure, pragnanz, proximity, continuity, similarity, inclusiveness
Shachi
Is it possible for a child to be schizophrenic?
Esther Reply
yes. early onset of schizophrenia starts at 13 to 18. very rare but possible.
Kristel
Good question
Mulder
It's uncommon for children to be diagnosed with schizophrenia.
pakki
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for circadian rhythm disorders?
wazir
is there a difference between age and romantic attachment style?
Alysha Reply
I don't think so. Well, not always. Certain things should be timeless.
Know
I'm 48 & he's 26 ...so we shall see?
Tanya
in my opinion if you both are comfortable with each other then definitely age is nothing but a number but then also there will be little difference in the cognition due to age
utkarsh
yes Utkarsh.I agree with you.We call it as generation gap. But there can be exceptions also...
Shailaja
yes generation gap can affect the relationship but this totally depends on the couple that how they settle up with each other
utkarsh
that is true, balance is needed. I spent a long time with an older man and I was more his child than his partner. power struggles are hard in relationships with generational gaps
Ashley
I think all it all depends on your comfort or braveness and attitude toward life, then age is just numbers.
Sujeet
new perspective n ones mindset towards life plays an important role... if the change is for gud.. go-ahead
Smitha
Yes romantic attachment styles change with age if that's what you are asking. here is where you can read more about it ***google.com/amp/s/qz.com/1206940/attachment-style-changes-with-age/amp/
krish
can empirical research be performed on people being diagnosed or people who have borderline personality disorder?
Stepphun Reply
yes it can
Angela
***pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/3711874/
Angela
thank you for the feedback
Stepphun
👍
Angela
yes?
Stepphun
discuss the three models of positional coding in working memory citing examples.Please help me with points to this question
jane Reply
can you clear me up a doubt that for to become a psychriatist what process are needed
Mimi Reply
What are the vocational choices for women in pakistan also discuss its aims and objectives.
Malik Reply
I want to research on Egocentrism and Autistic thinking on myself.
RAVI Reply
I want to research on Egocentrism and Autistic thinking on myself. Have you any suggestion for me?
RAVI
I want to research on Egocentrism and Autistic thinking on myself. Have you any suggestion for me?
RAVI
why do you think they correlate?
James
what is the role of psychology in the development of therapies for circadian rhythm?
wazir
what is Egocentrism
Ishfaq

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Source:  OpenStax, Psychology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 03, 2015 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11629/1.5
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