What Is Existential OCD? Signs, Causes, And Treatment

Existential OCD

Existential OCD is a type of OCD that is focused on the fear of death and the meaning of life. This type of OCD can be extremely debilitating, as it can cause a person to obsess over the most basic aspects of life. In this blog post, we will discuss existential OCD and how to deal with it. If you are struggling with this type of OCD, please know that you are not alone. There are many people who are fighting this battle every day. You can get through it.

What Is Existential OCD?

Existential OCD is a form of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) that focuses on the fear of death and the meaning of life. It can cause people to obsess over questions such as, “What is the point of living?” or “Am I going to die soon?” These types of questions can become overwhelming and cause a person to feel like they are stuck in an endless cycle of worry and doubt.

Difference Between OCD Of Existence And Philosophical Question

It is common to think about philosophical questions such as ‘What is the purpose of life?’ or ‘Why do we exist?’. However, it is important to note that there is a difference between pondering philosophical questions and having OCD of existence. With existential OCD, the thought process can become obsessive, leading to anxiety and fear. The individual may feel like they will never find the answers to their questions, leading to a sense of hopelessness. It is the point that makes the condition worst and that person got encounters anxiety and depression.

Signs That Shows A Person Is Suffer From Existential OCD

Existential OCD can manifest itself in multiple ways, but some common symptoms include:

  • Obsessive thoughts about death or the meaning of life.
  • Intense fear of mortality or the unknown.
  • Feelings of hopelessness, depression, and anxiety of life and death cycle.
  • Fear of making decisions due to the fact that life is short.
  • Difficulty concentrating and sleeping due to constant worrying.
  • overthinking about one’s life existence and purpose.
  • Fear of making mistakes or an inability to find joy in anything because they feel like it doesn’t matter anyway.

Obsessions And Compulsion Of Existential OCD

Obsessions Of Existential OCD

Here are some thoughts and activities with which people got obsessed:

  • Fear of death.
  • Worrying or overthinking about mortality.
  • Obsessing about the meaning and purpose of life.
  • Feelings of worthlessness or insignificance.
  • Doubting one’s own existence in comparison to others.
  • Ruminating on the idea that life is meaningless
  • Comparing oneself to others.
  • Urge to know about the universe.
  • Indulge in meta-physics and try to know about, where it all started.

Overall their obsession runs around with existential crisis.

Now, check some of the repetitive activities that people got used to in response to suppressing their anxiety and depression:

  • Avoiding situations that involve death such as funerals, cemeteries, etc.
  • Research topics related to mortality and philosophy.
  • Asking friends, family, or strangers questions about death.
  • Reassuring themselves by repeating mantras or affirmations.
  • Spending an excessive amount of time trying to find the.

What Triggers Existentialism OCD?

What Causes OCD Of Existentialism?

The exact cause of existential OCD is still unknown, but it is believed to be due to a combination of biological and environmental factors. For example, some research suggests that there could be an imbalance in the brain’s serotonin levels or a genetic predisposition for developing this type of OCD. Additionally, life experiences such as traumatic events or feelings like stress, anxiety, and depression can trigger this type of OCD. This condition is sparked by the fear of death and the afterlife. In some cases, it can also be caused by a deep-seated fear of not finding the meaning of life.

How Do You Calm Existential OCD?

How To Deal With Existential OCD?

The first step in dealing with existential OCD is to recognize that your thoughts are not necessarily true and that you have control over them. We have mentioned some of the possible treatments for this condition:


  • Exposure and Response Prevention: ERP is a form of cognitive-behavioral therapy that focuses on gradually exposing an individual to obsessive thoughts or activities related to existential OCD and then helping them learn how to cope with them effectively. It includes some homework assignment that allows the person to confront and challenge their obsession.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: CBT is another type of therapy that helps individuals identify and change negative thought patterns. CBT also focuses on teaching relaxation techniques to help reduce anxiety. The mindfulness-based CBT is a part of this therapy that helps one to accept their thoughts and feelings without judgment.
  • Metacognitive Therapy: Metacognitive Therapy is a type of psychotherapy that focuses on the thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes behind obsessive behaviors. In this form of therapy, patients learn how to recognize negative thinking patterns and challenge them with more rational and realistic thought processes.


Medical strategies including antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, and other psychiatric drugs may be prescribed by a doctor or therapist to help reduce the symptoms of OCD. Additionally, it can help to stabilize moods and provide relief from intrusive thoughts.

Mindfulness Activity

Mindfulness activities such as yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises can be highly effective in managing the symptoms of OCD. These activities help to bring the focus back to the present moment and reduce ruminating thoughts. Additionally, these activities also help to increase awareness of one’s feelings and emotions, which can be helpful for people with Existential OCD.

Self-Help Strategies

Self-help strategies such as progressive muscle relaxation, journaling, and self-compassion exercises can be beneficial for people with Existential OCD. Additionally, learning how to manage stress and worry can also help reduce the symptoms of this disorder.

Finally, it is important to remember that everyone experiences existential anxiety in some way.

It is important to seek professional help if the thoughts and worries become too overwhelming or if they are interfering with everyday life. Additionally, speaking to trusted loved ones about one’s worries can be helpful in alleviating any feelings of fear or anxiety related to mortality and philosophy.

Does Existential OCD Go Away?

Stats in this matter differ and vary from person to person. Some people almost easily recover from their intrusive obsession and compulsion after a time with going through therapy and other treatments. It is about suppressing and managing the disturbing obsession and actions rather than totally curing the condition.


We have touched on everything related to OCD of existentialism. Along with its causes, signs, obsession, compulsion, and treatment. We hope this article has provided insight into this condition and how to manage it. It is important to remember that Existential OCD is a treatable disorder, with the right help and support. It’s also important to consider professionals if the symptoms become too intense or debilitating.

Take care, and don’t forget that you are not alone! OCD is a mental health disorder characterized by obsessions and compulsions. If you have any queries regarding OCD treatmentERP therapy experienced therapists at OCDMantra can help: Book a trial OCD therapy session