OCD Germ Cross Contamination.
Germs are all around us and we would not be able to live without them.
But for sufferers of contamination OCD the thought that germs can potentially harm people, OCD sufferers are more vigilant and will avoid germ contamination to safe guard themselves and others.
The wording ‘Germs’ refers to the microscopic bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa that can cause disease. There are good germs and bad germs. The germs also know as (bacteria) help keep our digestive system in working order and keep harmful bad bacteria from moving in. Some bacteria are used to make medicines and vaccines. We also have good bacteria in our bodies to help fight bad bacteria. Scientists from the University of Georgia estimate the number of bacteria on our planet to be five million trillion trillion. Most People Encounter Roughly 60,000 Germs per day and germs live all around us in the air, in soil and water, and on food, plants, and animals (including on and in our bodies).
With an OCD germ contamination sufferer it is not always about washing and about keep things clean, it may be more to do with the intrusive thought and the prevention of germ cross contamination and the spread of germs.
An OCD germ contamination sufferer may avoid touching things that have not been disinfected or sterile, as everything that has been touched by someone else and not disinfected could possibly carry harmful germs.
An OCD germ contamination sufferer will avoid touching things that have been touched by someone else without taking measures to eliminate the possibility of cross contamination. This may include touching door handles with tissue, elbow or gloves which could also include toilet seats, handles and sink taps.
Anything that has been touched by another person potentially could have harmful bacteria including Door Handles, Public Chairs, ATM machines, Petrol Station filling up Nozzles and Card Machines,
When shopping several people may have handled a product before you, these people may be the ones that stack shelves with products that have been shipped from warehouses where other people have touched the same item before it ends up in your shopping basket and then in your home.
Imagine from the factory the item has come from may have been packed by person (1) and then shipped by another person (2), collected by another person (3) and then stacked by another person (4), with a total of four or more people handling the same item you have just purchased. This is just an example but once a product leaves a factory and goes on its journey it will be handled by multiple people.
Lets face it people are not doing as they are told and are not maintaining social distancing and are basically spreading germs.
If we all did as we were told and we all disinfected everything and stayed our distance the virus would be under control but its not.
For people especially teenagers who won’t be told, try keeping two teneages madly in love apart. Intermingling is happening under radar and until a vaccine is found this virus will continue to persist. Imagine two people living apart who are in a relationship, teenagers and adult alike how do you stop them from meeting up, you can’t and you won’t? Also try keeping bored teenagers in under lockdown. You would literally have to tag everybody. Maybe that is their master plan but I am not going to go into conspiracy theories on here right now. 🙂
For me social distancing is second nature to me and especially now my social anxiety is increased and am even reluctant to even meet and greet the delivery drivers let alone anyone else. I am at arms length when I have to collect a parcel and make them put it down on a wall until they are at a safe distance away from me.
I suffer with germ contamination OCD and the fear of touching things that have been touched by someone else without being disinfected is not incomprehensible to me. Hence I will avoid touching things and will handle items in a safe manner including removing all outer packaging carefully. The same goes for envelopes imagine how many people have touched that envelope before you and the saliva that stuck it down. How many letters have you opened that could be be licked by someone. Imagine the tons of post that is being mailed worldwide on a daily basis. How come no one has thought about this other than me? Licking envelopes and stamps is the equivalant to sending anthrax in the post.
Nothing gets touched with my bare hands that has not be made sterile or disinfected. I get it I cannot disinfect everything around me and would have to live in a sterile bubble if that was the case, but I try to maintain a sterile environment as much as possible.
I use over 1000 pairs of disposable gloves per month and about 6 litres of Dettol Antiseptic Disinfectant Liquid. Thats a small penace to pay if you want to keep your family safe.
Not everything that one washes can be washed at high temperatures as most professionals are suggesting for facemasks. Hence an alternative method of using Dettol Antibacterial Laundry Cleanser helps to kill 99.9%% of germs at low temperature in your washing machine.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic I am even more careful what I touch and am more vigilant especailly after I had intrusive thoughts about a takeout that was made up by someone else. I fought my thoughts but started to feel uneasy when I developed a mild sore throat which has now eased off thankfully. But the paranoia started to set in and it took some doing to overcome these unwanted thoughts.
Being labelled a germaphobe is not a laughing matter and one should not put labels on people. OCD is a mental health disorder and in my case it has flactuated since this Covid-19 Pandemic.
If you are to use disposable gloves only use them once and then immediately replace with a fresh pair (They are for one use only).
Always get rid of disposable masks carefully and never wear any mask twice, even if it is a washable cloth mask, as the pathogens could have landed on your masks whilst you were out (if you can’t see them how do you know they are not there).
Never share anything with another person, such as pens, keyboards etc without disinfecting them first.
Don’t worry about what people think, they should be more understandable especially in this present climate.
Always maintain social distancing and in the case of people you work with where you cannot maintain social distancing do not shake hands with them, especially if you do not want to whip out the hand santitiser straight after, as not to offend the individual and always wear your masks wherever posible and disinfect everything prior to use.
If anything do fist bumps, air hugs & kisses.
Germs could be on surfaces avoid touching public surfaces wherever possible and disinfect things before touching them.
Be vigilant of your environment and where pathogens can land on surfaces if they are airborne.
My recommendations for protecting yourselves and the products I use are as follows:
Do take a moment to watch the videos and the link I have attached to give you a better understanding about Germ Contamination.
If you found this post helpful please share and leave a comment. If you are finding things over whelming right now and simply want to chat just send me a message.
Stay Safe and Stay Strong.