Is There a Relationship Between Phobia of Germs and Substance Abuse?

For people who suffer from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, the effects of this condition can be crippling. One of the most common and notorious OCD conditions is mysophobia, or the fear of germs. This condition has many side effects, such as the compulsion to wash one’s hands dozens of times per day, or being deathly afraid to touch things that others have handled (car doors, buttons in an elevator or another person’s cell phone, among others).

Does Drug Use Aggravate Mysophobia?

While drug abuse hasn’t been shown to cause a person to suffer from the phobia of germs, it has been well-established that such abuse can aggravate this disorder, making it far worse than it was previously. In some cases, even after a person has gone into rehab and become free of addiction, this phobia of germs has remained an issue.

Can a Phobia of Germs Harm a Person’s Life?

While it’s always a good idea to be cautious of bacteria, it’s one thing to be careful and a whole other thing to live in crippling fear of touching other people’s car doors or cell phones, or even shaking a person’s hand because of the germs with which one may come into contact.

People with severe mysophobia may become so afraid to encounter other people and objects that they refuse to leave their homes. They may only venture outside after putting on a full surgical mask. They may carry a handbag or backpack filled with anti-bacterial spray and hand wipes everywhere they go.

Can Drug Addiction Make an OCD Condition Worse?

Addiction to drugs like cocaine or meth can make an obsessive compulsive condition, such as the phobia of germs, even worse. There are several reasons for this. For one, individuals using drugs might experience temporary feelings of liberation from their conditions. However, in order to keep this feeling alive, they’ll need to use more of the drug on a more frequent basis. This can very easily spiral into a full blown addiction before a person is even aware of it.

Those battling OCD symptoms by abusing drugs have probably noticed that their symptoms haven’t only returned every time they’ve come down from a “high,” but have also increased in severity. In some cases, even after a person has gone into rehab and beaten addiction, these OCD symptoms still remain behind at a somewhat higher intensity than when the individual first became addicted. Treatment and therapy will be required to help get this issue under control.

Do Not Let a Phobia of Germs Interfere With Addiction Treatment

If you’re suffering from an addiction to drugs, the best thing you can do is get into a program of rehabilitation as soon as possible. If you were suffering from mysophobia before you became addicted, chances are your drug abuse hasn’t helped at all, but only made things worse.

Your best chance to conquer your drug addiction and underlying phobia of germs is to get the proper treatment and therapy to deal with both conditions in a realistic and healthy manner. For more information, please call the drug addiction hotline at 800-447-9081 today.

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