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Counting Ritual - Zami - Aug 30th 2008

Question:

I also find myself counting constantly by fives. I break every object down into lines and count by fives. I have been doing this for as long as I can remember and I do not get headaches but I find it is almost a reflex action and I catch myself doing it without even realizing I am doing it. I find it calms me down when I am frustrated and for some reason the number 95 is to me the "perfect number". I cannot explain this and no one understands what I am talking about when I attempt to explain the situation. Please tell me what this is and explain to me why I am doing this.

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Answer:

Hi Zami,

The experience of counting over and again is a typical type of symptom of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). I would venture to guess that OCD is your diagnosis. As to why the nuber five fascinates you is more difficult to answer and has more to do with your personal history and individual mental dynamics than anything else. In other words, different people with OCD have different numbers and different variations of symptoms.

OCD is viewed as an anxiety disorder and the repetitive mental and behavioral symptoms an attempt to relieve anxiety. It is common for people with this disorder to experience depression along with anxiety.

There are several types of treatment that are effective and the choice depends upon the severity of those symptoms. For some people, OCD symptoms can be so severe that they are nable to to get out of the house because of the need to compulsively check and recheck things at home. For these people, medication is often the first line of treatment. The medication is one of the anti depessants known to relieve both depression and OCD.

The behavioral treatment with or without medication is behavior modification and cognitive behavioral treatment. These are done by a clinical psychologist who is specialized in doint this type of work.

I would urge you to get a referral to a clinical psychologist and begin your treatment.

I want to assure you that this disorder is now treated with a very high rate of success.

Best of Luck

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