Intrusive songs looping in head - My OCD Community

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Intrusive songs looping in head

Jill717 profile image

Hi, I’m new here. I have depression & anxiety & I’m under a lot of big stress recently and my sleep is terrible. But the killer is that I have songs repeating in my head constantly. At times I can’t get it to stop. I don’t know what this is. OCD, anxiety or both?. It’s so debilitating. It escalates as my stress escalates. I have resorted to taking Ativan which helps. But that’s my main strategy & don’t want to get addicted. Trying to look for other resources. Have talked to my therapist about it but haven’t really gotten anywhere. Anyone relate? Have u experience like this? I do all the things like walking/ excercise, acupuncture, I meditate too. Just have so much noise in my head. Want to cry sometimes. Thank you.

14 Replies

Do the songs have any particular personal meaning associated with them? That could be what’s causing them to loop in your head.

I frequently have a song or multiple songs stuck in my head when I am stressed and I understand how that can become overwhelming. I think of it as my brain being in some sort of overdrive.

Have you ever tried listening to different music (maybe a completely different style or genre that is more peaceful) when this happens? It might not clear your head completely but actually hearing music vs. having the same songs play on repeat in your head could help you push the “stuck” songs out.

Jill717 profile image
Jill717 in reply to wordbrain

Thank you for your reply. The songs don’t have any relevance. My brain just sort of picks up whatever it heard last or recently. And the intensity increases with my stress level. The best my doc could figure out is I hit some kind of threshold w/ stress & my brain is trying to distract me. But we can’t figure out if it’s an ocd thing, a pure stress thing or what. Really sucks & it kind of embarrasses me. I don’t talk about it with anyone except my doc. People w/ out anxiety issues think it’s kind of funny or odd and I end up feeling alienated. So I just keep it to myself. I know that’s no good.

Surreylady profile image
Surreylady in reply to Jill717

Sorry to hear. I have the same problem but I call out to names of people I don't know in my head lol, I am sensitive to reading or hearing people's names. I then say horrible stuff like burn in hell and kill so and so! It's horrible and it's like my OCD or anxiety wants me to be nasty and I'm not a nasty person. My ex was who put me through this!

Hi! It’s just our OCD brains!! I have this happen all the time. Just ignore it! I truly know it’s easier said than done, but if you focus on it, it will grow bigger. Just say “yep that song is in my head- oh well I’m going to live my life”!!!

Really? Ok. I do t have any other ocd symptoms so not sure. I have bad anxiety so wondered if it was ocd or anxiety or both. Thank you.

Anxiety and ocd go together- that’s what fuels the thoughts- it’s how you respond to them. If the songs are driving you “crazy” your anxiety won’t let them go. You have to just let the anxiety sit there. It will eventually pass

Thank you very much. I appreciate your input. God it sucks.


This seems to me like OCD is perpetuating the repetition of songs inside of your head.

I completely understand the fact that you can’t get the repetition to stop. I am suffering from that as I type this. I am wondering if I messed up a previous transaction and am now worried that I will have to pay the price.

It is extremely debilitating. I understand what you are saying.

I, too, do not want to get addicted to anything.

I can definitely relate. While my experience is not with songs, I definitely know 100% what you are talking about here.

I understand. The noise in my head is unbearable. It’s truly insane.

I want to cry too.

Thank you for sharing.

I wish you the best!

I’m sorry to hear you are having the same kind of trouble. ☹️ I hope you get relief very soon.

I have the same thing. I think it's my brain trying to calm me down. What actually helped me, although I didn't plan it that way, is when I joined a community chorus. Singing helps me a lot with stress & I end up having a greater variety of songs looping in my head! It's freaky how our brains work, isn't it? Glad it's not just me!

I’m glad that helps you. I’ve been trying to draw & paint to distract myself. Helps a bit. Take care.

I have had this problem my whole life. I have found that even listening to a song to block out the other multiple songs playing in my head does not help, however, after the first 20 years I discovered that I could choose the song that was stuck in my head, by forcing myself to mentally repeat a song that I know well and enjoy. Eventually it replaces all of the other songs that are playing and it is much more peaceful to have one song, especially if it is lyric free. I find that because piano and violin have strong sounds, they are the best at replacing songs with lyrics. One really cool feature of OCD (Yes, see it as a gift for organizing your life and being SUPER motivated) is that our brains are meticulous at remembering every note of a song! Take your favorite song with piano or violin and play it in your head three or four times until it replaces all the other songs that are looping. You can do it! Then you can go on with your life and it will have a soundtrack instead of discordant noise. Ten years later it's still working. Good luck!

Listening to soothing music is what helped get the hell out of the voices now i am able to control it. Key is to not be scared. The OCD mind will kill you dont be scared. Be the bigger mind.

Want to laugh??? I have this and when I tell you what happens I hope you get a chuckle out of it. I have a looping song that comes into mind at least once a year and then continues over and over. I have a few songs like this and sometimes I have to sing them as well. But this one song is the most embarrassing (and I make sure not to sing it).

The song Blurred Lines comes into my head in a loop but to make it worse instead of being sung by Robin Thicke it’s sung by the cast of Peewee’s Playhouse. Chairy gets most of the lines but Peewee peppers it with his laughs and dog growls, Butch and others chime in too if the song goes long enough but usually it doesn’t it repeats after the Hey Hey Hey which a multitude of characters chant together. It’s happening now as I write this accompanied with visuals!

I don’t even like the song - how did this idea even come about!

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