It is normal, on occasion, to go back and double-check that the iron is unplugged or your car is locked. But in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors become so excessive that they interfere with daily life. And no matter what you do, you can’t seem to shake them. OCD is an anxiety disorder characterized by uncontrollable, unwanted thoughts and repetitive, ritualized behaviors you feel compelled to perform. Like a needle getting stuck on an old record, OCD causes the brain to get stuck on a particular thought or urge.
Individuals suffering from OCD may exhibit the following behaviors:
- Fear of being contaminated by germs or dirt or contaminating others
- Fear of causing harm to yourself or others
- Intrusive sexually explicit or violent thoughts and images
- Fear of losing or not having things you might need
- Order and symmetry: the idea that everything must line up “just right”.
- Superstitions: excessive attention to something considered lucky or unlucky.
By working with one of our professional therapists, you can learn to change your thoughts and behaviors. You can also learn new coping techniques and problem solving skills so that you can control your OCD symptoms.