The health body adds: “The compulsive behaviour temporarily relieves the anxiety, but the obsession and anxiety soon return, causing the cycle to begin again.
“It’s possible to just have obsessive thoughts or just have compulsions, but most people with OCD experience both.
Treatment for OCD
OCD can be treated but the treatment recommended will depend on how much it’s affecting your life.
The NHS explains: “The two main treatments are psychological therapy – usually a type of therapy that helps you face your fears and obsessive thoughts without “putting them right” with compulsions, and medicine – usually a type of antidepressant medicine that can help by altering the balance of chemicals in your brain.
“A short course of therapy is usually recommended for relatively mild OCD. If you have more severe OCD, you may need a longer course of therapy and/or medicine.
“These treatments can be very effective, but it’s important to be aware that it can take several months before you notice the benefit.
“You can get treatment on the NHS through your GP or by referring yourself directly to a psychological therapies service.”