Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder that manifests itself through repetitive thoughts, creating a need to act on compulsions. Compulsions can include repeated cleaning, showering, washing hands, counting, arranging, checking door locks, switches, cookers, refusal to touch other people or objects, and eating foods in a specific order.
OCD thoughts and images are generally distressing and difficult to control, and tend to get worse over time. A lot of people with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) are aware that their thoughts are senseless and unrealistic, but find it difficult to stop them. OCD can significantly interfere with your life, with compulsions sometimes taking hours to complete.
What causes OCD?Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) can be the result of a number of anxiety disorders. It’s the anxiety caused by OCD that makes you have an urgent need to perform a particular routine or ritual.
These compulsions are performed to prevent the thoughts coming back and make them disappear. However, these thoughts tend to come back, and the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) cycle begins again.
How common is OCD?It is estimated 1-3% of adults suffer with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), and around 5% of children and teenagers.
How to overcome OCDI found that my symptoms of OCD became worse as my anxiety grew, with rituals becoming more frequent and demanding over time. Checking switches and locks developed into avoiding certain numbers and performing tasks, until OCD was implanted in my daily life and routine.
If you suffer from OCD as part of your anxiety it’s important you recognise the symptoms of OCD, especially if they’re getting in the way of you leading a free and healthy life. It’s very easy to allow OCD rituals to become part of your routine, but you shouldn’t just accept them - you should act to deal with them.
The key to your recovery and happiness is freedom, which means not feeling forced to do something or think something you don’t want to.
The only consequences to not performing a routine are those created by YOU.
What are the symptoms of OCD?I’ve highlighted some of the typical OCD symptoms to look out for:
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