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Are we all OCD now, with obsessive hand-washing and technology addiction?


06.16.2020

One of the hallmarks of obsessive-compulsive disorder is contamination fears and excessive hand-washing. Years ago, a patient with severe OCD came to my office wearing gloves and a mask and refused to sit on any of the “contaminated” chairs. Now, these same behaviors are accepted and even encouraged to keep everyone healthy.

This new normal in the face of a deadly pandemic has permeated our culture and will continue to influence it. Many stores now prominently post rules mandating face masks and hand sanitizer use and limit the number of customers allowed inside at one time. Walkers and joggers politely cross the street to avoid proximity to each other.

Only a few months ago, this type of behavior would have been considered excessive and certainly not healthy.

So, where do doctors draw the line between vigilance to avoid being infected with the coronavirus and obsessive-compulsive disorder that can be harmful?

This is an important question that I, a psychiatrist, and my co-author, a wellness and parenting coach, often hear.

Continue reading Are we all OCD now, with obsessive hand-washing and technology addiction? from The Coversation by David Rosenberg, M.D.



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