1. Compulsion- repetitive acts done out of anxiety.
2. Obsession- repeated unwanted intrusive disturbing thoughts.
3. Feelings of anxiety.
Many people have either obsessions or compulsive thoughts but most people with OCD usually have both.
But when it becomes persistent, unpleasant and you can’t do anything else, it’s a problem.
It’s normal to wash hands if u feel it’s dirty. But washing hands every hour shows a problem.
Common types of compulsive acts in people with OCD include:
*cleaning and hand washing
*checking – such as checking doors are locked
* repeated manual counting of things/money
* repeated ordering and re-arranging
* always asking for reassurance
* repeating words in their head
* compulsively hoarding and accumulating things they don’t actually need
* always washing even when clean
They are not the same and shouldn’t be confused.
OCD sets in when there’s anxiety, repeated meaningless acts and inability to function normally without doing compulsive activities.
Let’s not get misguided.
And it’s not a medical problem to maintain high standards of hygiene and personal care with regards to our personal space and things. That’s okay.
But when you keep going back to the wash hand basin every one hour to rewash your hands because you think some imaginary germs are still there, that’s a problem.
But if you keep showing up late to work because you spend four hours everyday going back six times to check if the same door was locked or the same gas was turned off, that’s a problem.
But when you keep all sorts of things, even useless things, that’s a problem.
You still have “Noisemakers List” dated 16/03/2000, why are u keeping it?
It’s difficult to point out really.
Sometimes it’s because of a painful past experience/trauma, maybe in childhood, so the OCD is a way to try to prevent it happening again.
For others, it’s learned from a parent who had OCD so that’s how they were raised.
Different things trigger it in different people.
1. Try some self-help resources. You could find books on dealing with anxiety and OCD, this is usually helpful.
You can google “OCD Action” if you are in UK. You can contact @MentallyAwareNG if you are in Nigeria.
They give good help.
Just someone you can count on, open up to and tell all your fears to, who will always listen and help you cope with the stress of the anxiety and OCD thoughts. That usually helps.
This may also help as well as long as they are quite supportive, not judgmental, not thinking that you are possessed or attacked by demons.
Try to be happy.
Get more sleep.
Drink more water.
Exercise as well.
Join a gym if you can, also.
There are some methods and medications that may be tried which you may find helpful.
But that will be up to you and your doctor to decide.
Thanks for this question. I hope this helped.