ContaminationI wash my hands excessively or in a ritualized wayWashing your hands many times a day or for long periods of time after touching, or thinking that you have touched a contaminated object. This may include washing the entire length of your arms
ContaminationI have excessive or ritualized showering, bathing, tooth brushing, grooming, or toilet routinesTaking showers or baths or performing other bathroom routines that may last for several hours. If the sequence is interrupted, the entire process may have to be restarted
ContaminationI have compulsions that involve cleaning household items or other inanimate objectsExcessive cleaning of faucets, toilets, floors, kitchen counters, or kitchen utensils
ContaminationI do other things to prevent or remove contact with contaminantsAsking family members to handle or remove insecticides, garbage, gasoline cans, raw meat, paints, varnish, drugs in the medicine cabinet.
Contamination If you can’t avoid these things, you may wear gloves or use paper napkins to handle them.
CheckingI check that I did not harm othersChecking that you haven’t hurt someone without knowing it. You may ask others for reassurance or telephone to make sure that everything is all right
CheckingI check that I did not harm myselfLooking for injuries of bleeding after handling sharp or breakable objects. You may frequently go to doctors to ask for reassurance that you haven’t hurt yourself
CheckingI check that nothing terrible happenedSearching for news about some catastrophe that you believe you caused. You may also ask people for reassurance that you didn’t cause an accident.
CheckingI check that I did not make a mistakeRepeated checking of door locks, stoves, electrical outlets, before leaving home; repeated checking while reading, writing, or doing simple calculations to make sure that you didn’t make a mistake
CheckingI check some aspect of my physical condition tied to my obsessions about my bodySeeking reassurance from friends or doctors that you aren’t having a heart attack or getting cancer
Checking Repeatedly taking pulse, blood pressure, or temperature
Checking Checking your appearance in a mirror, looking for ugly features
RepetitionI reread or rewrite thingsTaking hours to read a few pages in a book or to write a short letter because you get caught in a cycle of reading and rereading
Repetition Worrying that you didn’t understand something you just read
Repetition Searching for a ‘perfect’ word or phrase
Repetition Having obsessive thoughts about the shape of certain printed letters in a book
RepetitionI need to repeat routine activitiesRepeating activities like turning appliances on and off
Repetition Repeating activities like combing your hair
Repetition Repeating activities like going in and out of a doorway
Repetition Repeating activities like looking in a particular direction not feeling comfortable unless you do these things the ‘right’ number of times
CountingI have counting compulsionsCounting objects like ceiling or floor tiles
Counting Counting objects like books in a bookcase
Counting Counting objects like grains of sand on a beach
Counting Counting when you repeat certain activities, like washing
Ordering/ArrangementI have ordering or arranging compulsionsWasting hours arranging things in your house in ‘order’ and then becoming very upset if this order is disturbed
Ordering/Arrangement Straightening paper and pens on a desktop or books in a bookcase
HoardingI have compulsions to hoard or collect thingsSaving old newspapers, notes, cans, paper towels, wrappers and empty bottles for fear that if you throw them away you may need them
Hoarding Picking up useless objects from the street or from garbage cans
MiscellaneousI have mental rituals (other than checking/counting)Performing rituals in your head, like saying prayers or thinking a ‘good’ thought to undo a ‘bad’ thought.
MiscellaneousI need to tell, ask, or confessAsking other people to reassure you, confessing to wrong behaviors you never even did, believing that you have to tell other people certain words to feel better
MiscellaneousI need to touch, tap, or rub thingsGiving in to the urge to touch rough surfaces, like wood, or hot surfaces, like a stove top
Miscellaneous Giving in to the urge to lightly touch other people
Miscellaneous Believing you need to touch an object like a telephone to prevent an illness in your family
MiscellaneousI take measures (other than checking) to prevent harm or terrible consequences to myself or familyStaying away from sharp or breakable objects, such as knives, scissors, and fragile glass
MiscellaneousI have ritualized eating behaviorsArranging your food, knife, and fork in a particular order before being able to eat
Miscellaneous Eating according to a strict ritual
Miscellaneous Not being able to eat until the hands of a clock point exactly at a certain time
MiscellaneousI have superstitious behaviorsNot taking a bus or train if its number contains an ‘unlucky’ number (like thirteen)
Miscellaneous Staying in your house on the thirteenth of the month
Miscellaneous Throwing away clothes you wore while passing a funeral home or cemetery
MiscellaneousI pull my hair out (trichotillomania)Pulling hair from your scalp, eyelids, eyelashes, or pubic areas, using your fingers or tweezers. You may produce bald spots, or you may pluck your eyebrows or eyelids smooth
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