#OCD is more than just a hashtag

Saturday 10th October marks World Mental Health Day and it’s vital that today we focus on better access to treatment and support for people with OCD across the UK. In recent years there has been a huge shift in our awareness and understanding of mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression however we are failing to see this translate into quicker diagnoses and better treatments for people affected by OCD or a related condition.

Today we’re asking everyone to think about how they talk about OCD. The language we use matters. The dismissal of the condition as a “quirk” or that everyone “Is a little bit OCD” minimises the condition, adds to a sense of shame and stigma and reduces the chance that someone will be able to access treatment. By making sure that #OCD isn’t used as an adjective, we can work towards a world where everyone can access treatment and manage their condition.

People in the UK on average are still waiting 12 years between first having symptoms of OCD and accessing treatment. Nobody should have to deal with OCD alone. One reason why OCD has been underestimated in the past is that people with OCD are often afraid to seek help. People affected often worry that other people will think they are mad, and often do not know that their disorder is a recognised condition with effective treatments.

This week the World Health Organization has announced that 93% of mental health services across the world have been affected by COVID-19. The current pandemic makes it a particularly scary and uncertain time for everyone.

We are here to offer support and information for everyone with OCD or a related condition and we can only continue to be there for people through our support groups, forums and helplines with your support.

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