Discrimination and symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder among African Americans

Monnica T. Williams, Robert Joseph Taylor, Dawne M. Mouzon, Linda A. Oshin, Joseph A. Himle, Linda M. Chatters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


This study examined symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in a nationally representative sample of African American adults (n = 3,570) and correlations between OCD symptom dimensions and experiences of discrimination. Two categories of discrimination were examined, everyday racial discrimination and everyday nonracial discrimination (e.g., because of gender, age, and weight), to determine if racial discrimination had a unique impact on OCD symptoms. Results indicated that everyday racial discrimination was related to both categories of obsessions and all 4 categories of compulsions. Everyday nonracial discrimination, however, was not related to any of the categories of obsessions or compulsions. This indicates that racial discrimination is uniquely related to obsessions and compulsions for African Americans. The implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)636-645
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


  • African Americans
  • Discrimination
  • Microaggressions
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Symptom dimensions


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