Recently the wonderful (free!) app nOCD contacted me recently and asked to collaborate, and I did not hesitate to say yes. I love this app and what they are doing for the mental health community, and I’m so excited I get to spread the word about it.
In short, this is an app to help manage your OCD. As a disclaimer I do not have OCD, but I have family members who do. I personally have had depression off and on and some anxiety since my teens, so their team and I thought it would be good if I spoke from both of those perspectives! I’m not a certified psychologist and I don’t claim to be, so I speak only from experience when reviewing this app and the ways that I feel it helps.
nOCD, in short, is a free app meant to give you the power to self-soothe your symptoms, break the cycles that you fall into, monitor progress, and connect you with a community that understands. The more you use the app, the more it understands your patterns and can help you.
Getting started with nOCD is easy. Bob, the cute little purple mascot of nOCD, takes you through a simple to follow tutorial to set up your account. There are lots of things you can do once you’re set up, like completing CBT-based exercises, tracking your progress, and providing immediate care for yourself.
I want to talk about my favorite feature: the SOS function. When you’re having an attack, hit the “SOS” button. The app breaks down OCD-related issues into two predictable categories: obsessions (distressing/anxiety producing thoughts) and compulsions (doing something to prevent those thoughts from coming true), put together into hierarchies.
Let’s talk about obsessions first. When you enter an obsession, you can then add the compulsion that’s triggering you to get to that obsession. It will then take you to a screen with a stopwatch, compulsion prevention messages, and options to add a distraction app to go to. Your goal is to resist your compulsion for five minutes.
When the five minutes are up, you get a little congratulatory screen with two options: you can either finish your distraction session or keep going if you feel you need some more time. Compulsions are similar, except once entering your compulsion it will ask what obsession caused the compulsion, then ask for the trigger that caused the obsession. Then you’ll go to that same stopwatch.
I have a loved one with OCD who would compulsively open and shut drawers over and over again, or would go through doorways repeatedly to go inside it “just right.” An app like this when they were at their worst would have helped them for sure. Like I’ve mentioned before, I don’t have OCD, but I have issues with anxiety. My anxiety often comes with obsessive/worrisome thoughts, so using the SOS function is great for when I’m stuck on some obsessive thought, even if I’m not exhibiting any compulsions alongside that. It’s been helping me figure out the when, where, and why of my thoughts, and subsequently it’s been helping me break some of the “cycles” that I’ve found myself in when dealing with my anxiety.
Over time as you complete exercises and use the SOS function, the app will track your progress and let you see if you’ve been doing better or worse over time. You can also send this data to your therapist. This is incredibly valuable for tweaking your self-care plans, either by yourself of with the help of your counselor.
Overall, I think this app is incredibly helpful for mental health problems you may be facing, and it’s something I am happily using in my personal life. If you want to give it a shot yourself, you can download it here with my affiliate link.
Have you tried nOCD before? What do you think of it? Let me know in the comments!
Till next time,
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