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What are the Most Common Obsessions in OCD?

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  • Written By: Felicia Dye
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 04 December 2016
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Obsessions in OCD can cause people to worry about the cleanliness of themselves and their surroundings. They may have unwanted thoughts about sex. This could include fantasizing about perverse mental images or worrying about the consequences of sexual contact. They may also become worried about numbers, patterns, and other items being exact.

Being obsessed is one of the main OCD symptoms. Medical professionals tend to agree that people with OCD are generally aware of their obsessions. It is widely believed that these individuals want to stop having those thoughts and many are aware that their lack of ability to do so creates problems. Yet, the disorder overcomes many sufferers and they continue to have unwanted thoughts.

One of the common obsessions in OCD is cleanliness. Many people picture OCD sufferers as compulsive hand washers. Many do possess obsessions with bodily germs and uncleanliness. The obsession with dirt and contamination, however, often extends beyond concern for their own bodies. OCD sufferers are commonly concerned with their surroundings being unsanitary. Furthermore, these individuals tend to struggle with obsessions concerning bodily waste and other bodily fluids.

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OCD sufferers can have abnormal concerns about the results of their sexual relations. These obsessions in OCD can manifest in a number of ways. One of them is the fear of becoming pregnant or causing pregnancy. Other sufferers struggle with obsessions of contracting infections such as HIV and sexually transmitted diseases. This should not, however, be confused with hypochondria, in which people constantly believe they are already ill.

Recurrent sexual thoughts are one of the common obsessions in OCD. There is a wide range of thoughts or ideas a person with this condition could have. Among them, the International OCD Foundation lists inappropriate thoughts about children, obsessions about aggressive relations, and about perverse impulses and images.

Concerns about things being exact is another common and varied category of obsessions in OCD. People with the condition can become obsessed with sounds, including specific noises or manners of speaking. They may also obsess over items with parts of unequal lengths.

Numbers create numerous obsessions in OCD. A person may become obsessed with remembering certain numbers or determining the meaning of them. She may feel the need to count items she has already counted several times or she may have thoughts of counting certain items every time she encounters them. For example, a woman may think of counting all of the grapes in a bag after every purchase.

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Discuss this Article

ChanDawn
Post 4

@Anon243810: This is going to sound kind of stupid but I swear it will help you. When you turn off your car and you check your lights the first time, pat your head and rub your tummy.

I will tell you why this will work. You don't normally do this so you will remember patting your head and rubbing your tummy because it is not (yet) a part of your habit. Try it. What have you got to lose?

anon243810
Post 3

I have this routine where every night I turn my car off, I check to see if I turned my lights off, not once, but twice and sometimes 3 times. Every night. I know in the past I forgot a few times. My battery ended up dying and that was the beginning of what is now an ongoing curse of a habit. How do I stop this? Sad thing is I'm aware of this each and every time I do it, but I can't stop it

ChanDawn
Post 2

I, and indeed my entire family, suffer from OCD, as with the world at large, some more intensely than others.

There was a time when I could not use a crayon from a new box without first color coordinating them and then if anyone else used them and put one back in the wrong place, I would never use them again. I count my steps, I won't use soap with hair on it, I won't pull the drain plug from cold dishwater and no matter how hard I try, I can't stop hoarding paper products. I get high from the smell of a book store or library.

The good news is that I have gotten better about many things and it is all thanks to no one but myself. I actually developed a game that is so helpful to family and friends I'm thinking of marketing it.

anon155164
Post 1

Quite embarrassing, but I'm being honest here. I am OCD. I constantly am worried over hygiene and have become so bad that I've decided to just give up on myself in order to overcome the anxiety I get. (which isn't helping) I cannot do anything completely because it won't be perfect, so why complete a piece of crap?

I am constantly worried, and it's getting to the point that I can hardly concentrate on anything anymore. I am so out of it, and I blame this on trauma I underwent as a child. Ugh. Stressful.

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