Obsessive compulsive disorder is characterised by obsessive thoughts that we know are irrational e.g., of germs (which we attempt to reduce by hand washing), of causing harm to someone (when we may seek reassurance that we haven’t), hugely distressing thoughts or acts which are repulsive to us such as fears that we may commit acts of paedophilia or seriously hurting a loved one.

We often feel a great need for reassurance that we have not done the things we fear and our lives can be disrupted from one hour each day to many. CBT and anti depressant medication are the treatments recommended by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE), the advisory body to the NHS.