Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is a real medical condition which affects the patients both physically and mentally. However, the stigma surrounding this condition is too big that it’s hard for normal people to really understand what it’s like to have OCD.

OCD is not a personality trait

It’s not about being clean or organized. OCD is not a cute manner. It’s dark and painful. A woman with OCD may feel obsessed about locks. Every day, she has to go back to her house to check if she locks all the doors, which makes her late for work all the time. If she can’t go back to check, she will be flooded with fright and anxiety, so bad that she can no longer function at all.

People with OCD are not crazy

OCD is an anxiety disorder, not psychosis. People with OCD don’t lose connect with reality. They may be overwhelmed with scary thoughts and self-harm intention that others think they are crazy. But, they themselves know their fears are irrational. They just can’t help it.

OCD is not just about bacteria

OCD manifests itself in many forms. Some people dread bacteria and bodily fluids. Others are stuck with self-harm thoughts. Some have to keep everything in their life perfect or exact. Some are obsessively superstitious.

OCD can happen to anyone

Children have it. Adults have it. It may occur during preteen years or early adulthood. Some women develop an OCD during their pregnancy. Some get it after childbirth. Although kids may have OCD, many just stick to rituals or routines because they seem cool or soothing, not necessarily because they have OCD. So, don’t jump to conclusion just yet.

OCD is not an adjective

Don’t say things like “Oh, I’m so OCD” if you are not diagnosed with the condition. It’s not something to joke about. It deserves some sensitivity. OCD jokes are distressing to those who really suffer from it. If you haven’t spent hours lining up your stuff to a perfect shape with extreme fear that uneven stuff will kill you or your loved ones, you don’t have OCD and you are certainly not “so OCD” like you love to believe you are.

Don’t tell people with OCD to get over it

OCD is a medical condition. Even with proper treatment, it’s still hard to manage. Never tell someone with OCD to just get over it or turn it off for a while. It’s not a mode. They can’t turn it off. They can’t control it.

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Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

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