Steps 2 Wellbeing

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Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health condition related to anxiety that generally causes people to have obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours. Common obsessions can include:

  • touching a door handle and worrying that you may have picked up some germs that would make you ill, leading you to wanting to wash your hands again and again

  • leaving your house and worrying that you haven't turned off an electrical appliance leading to extensive checking of everything before you feel able to leave

  • driving a car and suddenly worrying that you may have knocked a pedestrian down without realising it, that causes you to turn your car round and go and check

  • experiencing unwanted violent, sexual or religious thoughts that lead you to worry that you are a mad/bad/dangerous person and need to keep others safe by avoiding them.

While actions and behaviours linked with the OCD might make you feel better and provide some relief, often this is short-lived before the next unwanted thought occurs.

OCD can have a very negative impact on a person's life because their behaviour (compulsions) can take up a lot of time, leading to the person avoiding those situations where they know they may experience the thoughts.

Although OCD can feel very persistent we offer support and treatment to help you to better manage the symptoms and improve your quality of life.