There is a difference between being a perfectionist and having OCD. Perhaps you keep the floors in your house so clean that you could eat off them. Or you like your knick-knacks arranged just so. That does not necessarily mean that you have OCD.
In OCD, your quality of life can decrease dramatically as the condition dictates most of your days and you become consumed with carrying out compulsive behaviors and rituals. Most adults can recognise that their obsessions and compulsions do not make sense. Children, however, may not understand what is wrong. But the lives of both children and adults can be severely affected by OCD. Children may find it difficult to attend school, and adults may find it difficult to work. Relationships may suffer. When the symptoms have such an influence on your daily functioning, it is more likely that you are suffering from OCD.
If your obsessions and compulsions are affecting your life, talk to your healthcare professional, such as your primary care doctor or a mental health professional. It is common for people with OCD to be ashamed and embarrassed about the condition. But even if your rituals are deeply ingrained, treatment can help.
Most OCD specialists agree that a combination of medicines and a specific behavioural type of psychotherapy is the best treatment for OCD.
Several medications have been proven effective in helping people with OCD, such as anti-depressants (for example clomipramine, fluoxetine, fluvoxamine and paroxetine). If one drug is not effective, others should be tried. A number of other medications are currently being studied.
A type of behavioural therapy known as "exposure and response prevention" is very useful for treating OCD. In this approach, a person is deliberately and voluntarily exposed to whatever triggers the obsessive thoughts and is then taught the techniques to avoid performing the compulsive rituals and to deal with the anxiety.