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APA Blogs

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5 Results

January 06, 2020

Brain Imaging Shows the Impacts of Psychotherapy

  • Depression, OCD, Trauma

Psychotherapy, or talk therapy, is an effective treatment for many mental health disorders. Advances in brain imaging are increasingly allowing researchers to observe the changes in the brain resulting from psychotherapy treatment.

October 31, 2019

Body Dysmorphic Disorder and a Culture of Perfection

  • Eating Disorders, OCD, Patients and Families, Women

Body dysmorphic disorder is an obsessive-compulsive related disorder that has garnered some media attention recently. Contrary to the offhand way it sometimes referred to in the media, body dysmorphic disorder is a serious mental health condition with potentially severe consequences. Individuals with body dysmorphic disorder are preoccupied with what they see as flaws in their physical appearance. They believe they look ugly or abnormal. These flaws are not noticeable to others or only seem to others as very minor.

September 19, 2019

Athletes’ Superstitions and Rituals

  • By Claudia L. Reardon M.D., Helen Tran
  • OCD, Patients and Families

Rituals and superstitions among athletes, and non-athletes, are very common and are typically harmless. In fact, they are at times helpful for athletes facing unpredictability in their sport and these rituals and superstitions can help them feel more in control. People may jokingly or offhandedly refer to these behaviors as OCD-like, referring to obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, they are not the same as OCD, a potentially debilitating mental health disorder.

June 25, 2019


  • Addiction, Anxiety, OCD

Most people are familiar with the term kleptomania, a real, but rare, mental health condition. The key feature of kleptomania is the repeatedly acting on impulses to steal items even though the items are not needed. A person with kleptomania does not usually preplan the theft and does not work with others. The stolen objects typically have little value and the person often gives or throws them away. Kleptomania is different from ordinary theft or shoplifting.

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