Worried about OCD? Not these celebs

'It was like a panic would come over me and I had to do something, and once I did it, I was OK' - Jessica Alba

Apart from being famous, what do David Beckham, Victoria Pendleton, and Jessica Alba, have in common? They all have OCD and are extremely successful.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder. It involves unwanted and distressing thoughts that won’t go away called obsessions, which can lead a person with OCD to carry out certain rituals or behaviours to try and reduce their anxiety.

OCD can be a severe and debilitating disorder, taking up huge amounts of time each day and causing real distress.

In the spotlight
David Beckham claims that his OCD shows up in constant cleanliness and having things in pairs. David’s wife Victoria says “if there’s three cans of Diet Coke, he’d throw one away rather than having three – because it has to be an even number.”

According to The Mirror, gold medal-winning cyclist Victoria Pendleton has OCD that is characterised by excessive hand-washing, cleaning and perfectionism.

“It was like a panic would come over me and I had to do something, and once I did it, I was OK,” says actress Jessica Alba, who also admits to having suffered from the condition.

Cleanliness and perfectionism are two of the more common manifestations of OCD. The type (and severity) of obsessions and compulsions differ widely from person to person.

Reaching their goals
Around 1-2% of people in the UK have OCD – that’s one or two people for every 100 pupils in your school.

But there are ways to manage OCD and, if you are diagnosed with the condition, your GP can help you explore things like talking therapy (CBT) or medication.

The celebs that have come forward to say that they have OCD have all achieved great things, so it’s important to remember: the sky’s the limit!

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