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Some authors have suggested that the emergence of the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, and the subsequent pandemic has meant that the constructs of pathological anxiety and depression are meaningless owing to widespread anxiety and depressive symptoms. This paper examines what is required to make a diagnosis of a depressive or anxiety disorder and how this may differ from fleeting symptomatology in response to specific situations or stimuli. All people experience the emotions of both anxiety and depression, but far fewer have a persistent anxiety or depressive syndrome which interferes with their quality of life and functioning. The pandemic and its issues are then discussed, and existing studies examining the reactions of people living through the pandemic are presented. Finally, the paper examines possible ways to cope at times of increased stress and how we can try to protect ourselves from long-term mental health sequelae of chronic stress.
Obsessive compulsive disorder affects between 1 and 3 per cent of the population. Ranging from relatively mild symptoms to being a profoundly disabling disorder, it is a condition that is amenable to modern treatments. This book examines the evidence for and potential role of a range of treatment methods, from CBT to pharmacological approaches. It asks what an individual can do to help themselves, and how friends and relatives can assist in the recovery process. Although firmly based in clinical research, it is written in a jargon-free and accessible style to help provide deep understanding of the disorder. Personal narratives and case studies of people living with OCD feature to illustrate points, and the book considers emerging research and the future of approaches to OCD. Built upon decades of experience, this guide will inform and support adults and young people living with OCD, as well as carers, families and health professionals.