Most of us have found ourselves in an urgent state of motivated cleaning at some point, as we feel compelled to clear the sink of dirty dishes or organize an entire closet.
Social media users have now dubbed this sudden urge to tidy up "manic cleaning," and the term has picked up attention on TikTok.
Many users have posted videos showing their own manic cleaning sessions, expressing how the "high" of productivity tends to wear off as suddenly as it arrived.
One video posted by user @b0btaildog shows her vacuuming and suddenly falling to the ground with the caption, "When ur manic cleaning and not eating or drinking all day finally hits."
The video currently has two million likes — with lots of reactions from other users.
"Manic cleaning is the only way I can get the job 100% done, I swear," TikTok user @szafanatic commented below the video.
"MANIC CLEANING IS REAL," another user said in response to the same video.
TikToker Jessica Roof posted a similar video that’s been viewed over eight million times.
The TikTok, where Roof is seen walking into a room and dropping a full basket of laundry, is captioned, "When you’ve been manic cleaning for the past 8 hours and go to tackle the 3 baskets of laundry but then feel the switch flip."
Viewers seemed to relate, including a TikTok user named Sophie, who commented, "It’s the dishes for me. I could be on my knees, scrubbing the bathroom tiles, but the second I think of dishes, I’m done."
Another user, @sydbran, said, "For me, it’s remaking my bed after washing my sheets/manic cleaning everything in sight."
Experts caution against ‘inappropriate’ term
While manic cleaning seems to be a shared experience for some, it may not be fair to consider it "manic" at all, according to experts.
Nilou Nekou, a licensed marriage and family therapist and chief clinical officer at Alter Health Group in California, emphasized the difference between "manic" and "impulsive."
"I think the word ‘manic’ is attention-seeking," she told Fox News Digital in an interview.
"It does draw a negative component to it, because if somebody is really dysfunctional, or they have that diagnosis, this could be a dangerous label [to use] on social media," the therapist added.
"No one should be manically cleaning in the hours [when] they’re supposed to be asleep."
Dr. Aron Tendler, a board-certified psychiatrist and chief medical officer at BrainsWay, a provider of neurostimulation treatments, also discourages the term "manic cleaning."
"It’s an unfortunate use of the word ‘manic,’" said the expert. "When people use these terms inappropriately, it kind of minimizes the struggle."
Tendler, based in West Palm Beach, Florida, said mania indicates an increase in "goal-directed activity" in people with conditions like bipolar disorder.
A hypomanic period lasts at least four days, according to Tendler, with increased energy for most of the day.
"You have to have a distinct period of an abnormally, persistently elevated, expansive or irritable mood," he said. "And during that period of time, you generally are going to have a change in your normal behavior."
While manic cleaning can sometimes resemble a hypomanic period, Tendler said a crash in energy and mood tends to follow it.
This "compulsive cleaning" can be compared to a similar condition called obsessive-compulsive disorder, otherwise known as OCD, he noted.
"But that’s not really what the trend is," Tendler said. "OCD is more of a chronic illness, which may have varying severity across a person's lifespan."
"When people have OCD, they have unwanted, intrusive thoughts and concerns … They usually have some things that they're excessively focused on worrying about."
The doctor said he considers cleaning a "common focus of concern" in OCD, as rituals such as handwashing and house cleaning often arise.
"Someone with OCD would constantly be cleaning, doing laundry, wearing gloves all the time," he said. "It wouldn't be like a burst of cleaning for a few hours once a week or twice a week."
Other mental disorders, such as ADHD, could also be a factor in manic cleaning, Tendler said, as prescribed stimulants can cause hyper-focused behavior.
"No one should be manically cleaning in the hours they’re supposed to be asleep," he said.
Instead of cleaning in bursts for several hours at a time, Nekou recommended creating a weekly schedule for various household tasks.
In her work at residential treatment facilities, Nekou said she teaches individuals not to act on their impulses and to strive for a "structured schedule and environment."
Tendler agreed that it’s "good to have [a] structured, focused amount of time spent on cleaning."