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Chelsie

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Hi 

I feel guilty as I’m very sporadic on this forum - I just rear my head when something causes me anxiety and I’m looking for some good sense advice. 

My ocd is related to contamination and, in particular, blood. I have a particular concern about touching anything with blood on and then catching a virus such as hepatitis etc. The summer tends to be a bad time, as lots of people seem to put plasters on their feet when new sandals rub and then they drop off onto the floor. I find myself constantly looking down to check that I’m not stepping on anything that is s likely source of contamination. Now autumn’s here, there are far fewer plasters dropped, but they seem to have been replaced by the plastic tooth flossers. I now spend my time attempting to avoid stepping in any of these, as they are likely to have blood on them. 

This morning, I was walking from the car park to the shop with my daughter, who was walking a little in front of me. I stepped to one side to avoid a discarded flosser, but didn’t see if my daughter trod on it. I’m now panicking that she has blood on her shoes and has tracked it into the house. Everything feels contaminated, especially as I have 2 cats who obviously walk on the floor and then sit in the sofas, beds etc. 

I am doing my very best to cope with this - I’ve put the tv on, sat down with a drink and doing my best to distract myself. However, I have done a lot of handwashing, cleaning sofas and surfaces etc. since we returned home and I know I’ve started a cycle that I need to break. I’m repeating the mantra that ‘this too shall pass’ and am concerned that this should be a one off bad spell and not the beginning of another period of anxiety. 

Words of wisdom please? 

Edited by Chelsie
Misspelling

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The cycle started with you scanning the ground. That's your first, big compulsion. Yes the extra cleaning is also a compulsion. I know you ruminate a lot and I'll bet you've become an expert on blood borne diseases from all the Googling you've done.

The above is keeping you stuck.

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Thanks for the reply. I did actually google ‘contamination from floss picks’ last night, but of course it didn’t tell me what I was looking for. I also know that, whatever it had said wouldn’t have been enough, even if it had categorically said there was no danger. 

I have woken up feeling grotty this morning - first time for about 3 monthis, so feeling cross with myself. Restless legs, hot/cold sweats the lot. I am taking my daughter and a friend to London for an event today - the last thing I feel like doing as it involves crowds of (potentially contaminated) people, public toilets etc. I would give anything for a quiet day at home! However, good thing about going out is that I am away from the easy access to a sink, hand soap etc and I also know that distraction is my best friend at times like these. 

 

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Years ago before I knew this theme was OCD too, I had a fear of blood contamination etc. In the end I had a couple of incidents take place where I was in a panic as I had been ‘exposed to contamination’ and I was in a real state. One being about 12 years ago now where a repair man cut his finger repairing our dish waster and I happened to cut mine too at the same time. 

I think now that theme went as I had no choice but to just tolerate the uncertainty (which was so hard) and get on with my life, and realise it’s really not that easy to be contaminated and catch something! If it was we’d all be walking around in masks etc!! 

Enjoy your day in London and the best you can try and develop a whatever attitude to the OCD thoughts x

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