What It’s Like Using the Internet When You Have OCD


What happens when OCD symptoms express not in the physical world (for example, when a patient repeatedly, and in a way that interferes with their life, checks their oven to ensure that it’s off), but on the internet instead:

Saxena says he has patients who have trouble sending emails at all, concerned that they might write something offensive or use foul language, even though such modes of communication are totally out of character for that person. These “checking behaviors,” he says, “can sometimes take hours and hours and hours out of a day. Some folks say, ‘I’m getting my work done, but it takes four hours longer because I have to go back and check everything over again.’”


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