8 Types of Obsessions In Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

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3 min readDec 13, 2022


Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

The nature of obsessions in OCD people can be different from one person to another, however, there are some common elements among OCD sufferers. For instance,

1) Contamination

The obsession with contamination can be with dirt, germs, bodily fluids, disease, environmental contaminants, or chemicals.

2) Harm

People who are obsessed with causing damage may be terrified of doing it purposefully, unconsciously, or both. They may also be scared of doing it to others or themselves.

Those with OCD who have obsessions about doing damage don’t always worry about doing it on purpose. Rather, they can be terrified of carelessly hurting someone, which could result in controlling impulses.

3) Unwanted Sexual Thoughts

Individuals with OCD may have invasive, unwanted, inappropriate, or deviant sexual ideas. These obsessions might manifest as visions or urges related to homosexuality, child sex, incest, rape, or aggressive sexual behaviour.

4) Religiosity/Scrupulosity

Obsessive thoughts, fears, or concerns regarding moral judgment and behaviour are common among OCD sufferers. They can be concerned about offending God or committing blasphemy if they practice religion.

5) Losing Control

Some OCD sufferers worry that they may become uncontrollable. They are concerned about hurting themselves or other people by impulsive physical actions like theft or using violence, as well as through thoughtless verbal actions like degrading someone or saying something impermissible. These obsessions may include violent or even horrifying mental images.

6) Perfectionism

Obsessions with “perfectionism” qualities include a need for something to feel exactly right, precision, symmetry, a need to know or remember something, and a need to follow strict rules or regulations.

7) Physical Illness

People with OCD may develop obsessions different to contamination-related germ obsessions…



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