Compulsive ear cleaning when trying to sleep


Live a Happier Life - Free from Picking

Stop picking with online therapy program, based on CBT.

avatar

October 01, 2017

This sounds like OCD. What is the fear behind him not wanting to or not being able to sleep on his ears? Has he told you his thought process behind the behavior? What compels him to have these specific routines? There is a book I just read which reminds me of your husband's behavior. The book is called Compulsive Acts: A Psychiatrist's Tales of Ritual and Obsession written by Elias Aboujaoude. Here is the link to it --- https://www.amazon.com/Compulsive-Acts-Psychiatrists-Ritual-Obsession/dp/0520259858/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1506896282&sr=1-1&keywords=compulsive+acts. The very first chapter on OCD has a story of a man who is dominated by obsessive thoughts of not having anything touch his nose. He goes to great lengths to prevent anything from coming in contact with his nose. Its a severe case...your husband seems to have a milder form of such a specific OCD. Do know that OCD can get worse with time, but it can also wax an wane in its intensity. Is your husband going through a particularly stressful time? OCD is usually triggered by a stressful event although other times it can materialize on its own.
avatar

October 02, 2017

Thanks Serene, I will ask him more specific questions. He is very stressed, as well we ha e been diagnosed undermethlyated and pyrroluria. I believe it manifests as s physic sensation, rather than an urge to clean his ears.hehas a physical sensation in his ears when he tries to sleep in them.cleaning them seems to help him but not good for his ears, sleep or mental health
avatar

October 02, 2017

Fear -it feels uncomfortable Thought process-again physically uncomfortable (but he knows there is no real physical discomfort it is in his head) Compelling process- to release the perceived discomfort
avatar

October 02, 2017

So its in imagined sensation of something in his ears? The closest disorder that it might mimic when it comes to skin picking is delusional parasitosis. I think some individuals who suffer from such a disorder tend to experience a feeling of something crawling under their skin. Does your husband feel as if something is crawling in his ears, as if there are little insects moving around?