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Behaving abnormally and getting irritated. What is causing this feeling?

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Practicing since : 2003
Answered : 2189 Questions
HI ,

I have problem with my day to day habbits.

I pay attention to small irrelevant things like if time in my watch is even or odd, door mat should be straight.

If someone does some work for me ,i never get satisfied and redo it again.(Like cleaning,laundry.. almost everything)

i have 2-3 diff rent hand writings and keep switching in between them(for a time being i feel its good but then i tear of page written and change it again).

I check door and windows again and again ,to see if its lock or not. Even if i have small health issue i start to worry and think about worse , for ex: i had sore throat , and i got cancer scare .

I am even too protective about my 2 yr old kid,i check again and again if she is having fever or not.If she cries i immediately take her to hospital and most of time it just nothing.

i clean my floor again and again trying to make it 100% germ free and clean but never satisfied. I am 6ft tall , 77kg ,with 32 waist but i always feel i am getting fat and try new new things to loose weight ...

This all activity is not only time consuming and also sometime irritating(If someone leaves doormat turned or is unclean or many small thing ,i get very irritated.

Please advice i know i have problem but can't help to do these things again and again.I don't have any depression or anything , i am able to give good output at work,i run/jog, cycle to office but all this things come in my mind at home/free time.

My father and grandfather had problem of getting irritated/angry but nothing more.

Posted Wed, 25 Jul 2012 in Mental Health
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 1 hour later
Welcome to Healthcare Magic and thanks for your question...

You have given a fairly good description of your symptoms. Your symptoms seem to be indicative of an Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). OCD is a type of anxiety disorder where persons have repeated, unwanted thoughts or acts or behaviours which they are aware of doing but are unable to control, thus resulting in distress. These repeated thoughts are called 'obsessions' and the repeated actions or behaviours are referred to as 'compulsions'.

You seem to have multiple obsessions and compulsions. For example, obsessive thoughts like symmetry (wanting the doormat to be straight), contamination (worrying about germs and cleanliness), etc. and compulsive actions like various forms of checking, washing / cleaning repeatedly, etc. The typical nature of OCD is that the person is aware of what he is doing, also feels that it is irrational or unnecessary, but still is unable to control it.

Since you mention that these symptoms are consuming a lot of your time and causing you distress (and I'm sure resulting distress to others around you as well), I think you need help. I'm not sure how long you have been suffering from these symptoms, but usually persons with this problem seek help only after a few years because they dont realise their problem initially and moreover, feel embarassed about it.

Now, if you are thinking that you have a rare problem, then you are mistaken... OCD is present in about 2 to 3 percent of people and so it is not uncommon. The other good news is that there are several forms of proven and effective treatment options available and the response is generally good. The options are medication (called SSRIs) or psychological therapies (like CBT).

I would suggest that you consult a psychiatrist who would be able to assess you more in detail and advise you the appropriate treatment plan. Please do not hesitate thinking that it will be embarassing or worry that you will be branded as a "psychiatric patient". You dont have to keep suffering in silence when there are good treatment options available.

Wish you all the best.

- Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Consultant Psychiatrist
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