Not everything is OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder):

  • Concern or worry: it is not unreasonable or exaggerated; it is not an obsession.
  • Fixed ideas: they differ from obsessions in that they are not unpleasant or painful and are not always involuntary.
  • Manias or habits: these differ from compulsion in that they do not cause suffering and do not deprive one of the freedom to act without.

Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder is defined by the combination of at least four of the following:

  • Preoccupation with details, rules, inventories, organisation or plans to the extent that the main purpose of the activity is lost from view;
  • Perfectionism that hinders task completion;
  • Excessive devotion to work and productivity, to the exclusion of leisure and friendships;
  • Rigidity and scrupulousness about moral, ethical or value issues;
  • Inability to throw away worn out or useless items even if they have no sentimental value;
  • Reluctance to delegate tasks or work with others unless others submit exactly to the way one wants things to be done;
  • Stinginess with money for self and others: money is seen as something to be hoarded for future disasters;
  • Rigidity and stubbornness.

A tic is the involuntary contraction of a muscle or muscle group. Tics and OCD therefore seem quite different. But sometimes there are very strong links between them and the tic should be identified as a compulsion secondary to an obsessive stimulus.