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Mysophobia/Germaphobia help...

Hello all,

I am currently suffering from a pretty severe case of germaphobia. I know this is the "anxiety" forum, but this mental health issue creates a lot of anxiety and is seriously ruining my life... I need to resolve this now.

So, I am here to try and discern what is standard and normal hygiene that everyone should practice and what is overly  hygienic (which I should avoid).

The problem stems from "germs and bacteria". I can't stand them. I constantly use rubbing alcohol and windex over an area that has been "infected" to clean and sanitize it.

From this, I have my first question: Urine on the bathroom floor. I am a guy, and sometimes I miss, or sometimes I am standing too far and my stream loses power too fast and some urine drops on the floor in front of me.

Is this dangerous? Whenever this happens I get incredibly paranoid. I wipe it with toilet paper, spray the area with windex, wipe again, rubbinbg alcohol, wipe again, then more rubbing alcohol and let it sit until it dries by itself.

What should be the proper, normal, and healthy reaction to spilling urine on the floor? Is what I am doing obsessive? Should I simply wipe it up with a paper and maybe a wet wipe and be content that the surface is not contaminated?

Please help. Any replies could greatly solve this issue for me and let me get on with my life.

2 Responses
Avatar universal
The answer to your question is actually factually complex, but I don't think the question is your main concern.  Phobias, or OCD, are an anxiety problem, so you're in the right place, and you need to work on this in therapy.  Because even if you practice proper hygiene you're still going to have anxiety and it's the anxiety you most need to work on so you can at least attempt to alter the way you think.  As for your question, using too much of any antibiotic, including so-called disinfectants, weakens your immune system.  When you see people using those sanitation sprays and wipes every time they work out at the gym, for example, they are killing off beneficial organisms along with the harmful ones.  The germ theory of disease isn't without controversy -- even its inventor, Louis Pasteur, later in life decided the immune system was really more important since germs would always be able to mutate to survive no matter what we did but a healthy balanced immune system takes care of us all the time.  So, yeah, clean up your spills, but you can't avoid germs -- they're everywhere.  Take care of your immune system as best you can so your body can do its thing naturally to protect you from the unseen.  But the anxiety, that you need to work on, because now you're not only living in an insecure world but you're making yourself unhappy about it -- that's just doubling the trouble.  Good luck.
Avatar universal
I appreciate the reply.

I thought if I could compare the difference between normal sanitation and excessive, that could help.

Because if I say "f*** it" and stop obsessing, I might actually stop doing some standard sanitation things that everyone normal should practice.

Thanks for your help regardless
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