How to Deal with OCD Racing Thoughts

If you have OCD, you know that the thoughts that go through your head can be incredibly intrusive and overwhelming. It can be challenging to focus on anything else when constantly bombarded with them. Racing thoughts are a common symptom of OCD, and they can be tough to deal with in most cases. This blog post will discuss some strategies for dealing with racing thoughts in people with OCD.

Can OCD cause racing thoughts?

Yes, OCD can cause racing thoughts. People with OCD are constantly obsessing over things and trying to control their thoughts. 

One of the hallmark symptoms of OCD is what we call “intrusive thoughts.” These are unwanted, persistent, and often disturbing thoughts that seem to pop out of nowhere. 

They can be about anything from harm coming to ourselves or others, sexually inappropriate images, to worries about things that are completely irrational. And because these thoughts are so distressing and seemingly random, they can cause a lot of anxiety, leading to even more racing thoughts in a never-ending cycle. Therefore, If you’re stuck in this cycle, it can feel like there’s no way out.

Why do OCD thoughts feel real?

There are a few reasons why OCD thoughts can feel real.

One reason is that our brains are wired to pay attention to things that feel threatening. When we have a thought that feels threatening, our brain will automatically focus on it and try to figure out what to do about it.

Another reason why OCD thoughts can feel real is that they may contain some element of truth. For example, if you’re worried about getting sick, there’s a chance that you could get sick at some point. This possibility makes the thought seem more real and believable.

Lastly, OCD thoughts can feel natural because we often ruminate or obsess over them. We might keep thinking about the same thing repeatedly, which can make it feel like it’s true.

Racing thoughts or constant worry

Racing thoughts are a common symptom of OCD. They are repetitive, intrusive, and unwanted thoughts that cause anxiety or distress. Many people with OCD worry about things that are unlikely to happen, such as getting sick or in danger.

Constant worry is a feeling of unease, nervousness, or dread about something with an uncertain outcome. Every person experiences anxiety and worries at some point in their lives.

There are a few key things that distinguish racing thoughts from constant worry.

First, racing thoughts tend to be more persistent and intrusive than worry. They can feel like your mind is constantly running in circles, and it can be challenging to focus on anything else. 

Then, physical symptoms often accompany racing thoughts, such as increased heart rate, sweating, and difficulty breathing. 

On the other hand, constant worry is more of low-level background anxiety that doesn’t usually interfere with your ability to function. 

Are OCD sufferers dangerous?

The answer is no. People with OCD are not dangerous. However, their obsessions can lead to some very self-harmful behaviors. 

It can feel like your mind is going 100 miles an hour in racing thoughts, and you can’t turn it off. Racing thoughts can be about anything that worries you. For example, you may worry about making mistakes or being perfect. 

Furthermore, someone with OCD might become so fixated on the idea of germs and contamination that they avoid all human contact and eventually become isolated from society. Or, someone with OCD might compulsively hoard items because they are afraid of losing them or throwing them away. 

People with OCD are usually very aware that their thoughts are irrational and do not want to act on them. Nevertheless, these intrusive thoughts can significantly impact the sufferer’s quality of life.

How to stop racing thoughts OCD?

If you’re dealing with OCD racing thoughts, it can be tough to know what to do. The first step is to understand that these thoughts are symptoms of your OCD, and they’re not necessarily natural. 

Therefore, try to focus on the present moment as much as possible. Obsessing over future events or dwelling on past ones will only worsen your racing thoughts. If you find yourself getting caught up in a thought, take a deep breath and try to let it go. It takes practice, but eventually, you’ll better manage your thoughts.

There are also some specific techniques to calm down when you’re feeling overwhelmed by OCD racing thoughts. One is visualization, which involves picturing yourself in a peaceful place. Another is to use affirmations or positive statements about yourself that can help counter the negative thoughts.

If you are dealing with OCD racing thoughts, there are a few other things you can do to try and calm them down:

  • Understand that your thoughts are just thoughts. They are not reality. Just because you think something does not mean it is true.
  • Let go of any perfectionistic tendencies. Accept that there will be some messiness in life and that this is okay. 
  • Practice mindfulness and focus on the present moment as much as possible. It can help to ground you and stop your mind from racing. 
  • Reach out for professional help if you are struggling to cope with your OCD thoughts on your own. A therapist can provide you with additional support and guidance.
  • Join a support group either locally or online. It would be an excellent way to ask fellow members any questions that might interest you. In this way, your journey to overcome OCD will be easier and more enjoyable. 

You are welcome to join our community, where we discuss topics related to OCD and share our own experiences battling with the disorder.

Notable Replies

  1. Can I have racing thoughts because of other conditions than OCD? I often have thoughts about harming those who made me feel uncomfortable at some point but have no clue what is the reason for those thoughts.

  2. I was doing ACT and learned to accept the thoughts that come to my mind. I think that is the first and best thing you can do as a start. Accept the thoughts as guests that will eventually leave, say hi to them, and continue doing your tasks.

  3. There are a bunch of disorders associated with racing thoughts. I believe that talking with a specialist is the best solution for you.

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