Hello, I would like to help you with your question. It does sound like you have OCD. Obsessions of any kind can interfere in your ability to function in daily life. OCD can be controlled and managed well with medications and therapy. Medications and therapy can provide you with the coping mechanisms you need to deal with your thoughts. And medications can help reduce the thoughts or possibly eliminate them. Talk to your doctor about a referral. You mentioned that you are already on medication. Often, medications can take up to 6 weeks to begin to work. If you feel that you should already feel better, contact your doctor and ask about how long you can expect to wait until you feel better or if you should be on a different medication. There are many things you can do to help yourself cope with these thoughts and compulsions. The trick is trying many things to find what works for you. OCD thoughts can be handled through a variety of ways: Learn to relax- this helps a lot because one of the main issues with OCD thoughts and compulsions is the anxiety you experience with them, triggering the urge to act out. So learning how to keep calm when dealing with these thoughts can help. Here is a link to help you learn Progressive Relaxation, one of the best ways to control your anxiety: http://www.guidetopsychology.com/pmr.htm Write down your thoughts- by keeping a journal so you have a place to express your thoughts when they do bother you. It can also help to go back and see your progress or look at repeating patterns and how you handled them. Make a list of activities- things you can do to distract yourself when you do experience OCD thoughts. Exercise, calling someone or watching a movie for example. Give yourself a break- realize that OCD is caused by physical imbalances in the brain as well as anxiety. So telling yourself things like "This is just a physical response and it is not my fault" or "I can control this any way I want" and doing another activity instead of giving in helps as well. Do not give your obsession meaning- The more you focus on it, the more importance you give it. So treat it like it's nothing. "It's only my thoughts. It does not mean anything". Cognitive behavior therapy can help a lot as well. It assists you in "retraining" your brain to think other thoughts and calming yourself so you don't feel the need to respond to the thoughts as much. And a therapist can help with exposure response prevention as well. It helps to have the support. Read as much as you can about OCD and how to address it. The more you educate yourself, the better chance you will find things you can do to help yourself. Also, keep in mind that if you are worried about being mentally ill, you are more likely NOT to be mentally ill. Most people with a serious mental illness do not worry about it. Most of the time, they have little insight into it. Plus you have been checked out already for mental illness. The signs are usually obvious and the doctors you saw did not see any of those signs. That means you most likely are just dealing with OCD and anxiety, which with therapy and medications can be reduced or even eliminated. I hope this was helpful, Kate
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You may also find this resource helpful:
The OCD Workbook: Your Guide to Breaking Free from Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder by Bruce M. Hyman PhD LCSW and Cherlene Pedrick RN
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