If you are struggling with symptoms of OCD, you may feel isolated and misunderstood, but it is important to remember that you’re not alone. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, there are over two million people in the United States that are currently living with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. You may have been suspicious that some of your behaviors are symptoms of the disease for months or even years. If you're worried that you may show any of these signs of OCD, talk to a therapist in your area as soon as possible to make sure the proper action is taken.
Obsessive hand-washing is one of the most common signs displaying OCD. If you feel like you’re washing your hands so that it inhibits other aspects of your daily life, it is time to talk to a mental health professional. Of course, washing your hands as much as you can throughout the day is a great way to stay healthy and free of airborne illnesses, but you’ll know that this is a symptom of OCD if your compulsion to wash your hands stems from an irrational fear of germs.
Checking or checking behavior is another highly prevalent symptom of OCD. This is most displayed when people feel a compulsive need to check their oven three, or even 20 times, just to make sure that it is, in fact, off. This type of behavior can stem from an irrational fear of being hurt or strong feelings of irresponsibility. This feeling out being out-of-control until you’ve triple or quadruple or octuple checked something could be interfering with your daily life. If your incessant need to check things has you late for work and appointments or causes you to miss out on normal activities, it is time to talk to a therapist about your options.
Counting may be less obvious than other OCD behaviors, but it is a very common behavior among people who suffer from the disease. Everyday things, such as walking up stairs or putting dishes away, may come with a compulsion to count every item or count each item in a numeric pattern. Some people count to seven while others count to ten and then repeat the pattern over and over again until the job is complete or the stairs have ended. There are many things and ways in which you may find yourself counting. The order of it may make you feel more in control, which is why it is associated with OCD.
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