There are various treatment for obsessive compulsive disorder available to individuals. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and medication are two main approaches. According to the American Psychiatric Association practice guideline for treating OCD, exposure and response prevention (ERP) CBT is highly recommended; ERP involves gradually confronting your obsessive thoughts without engaging in compulsive behaviors, ultimately decreasing anxiety over time.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an established approach for treating OCD. CBT employs various procedures, such as exposure and ritual prevention. Exposure can break the link between objects or situations that trigger feelings of distress and overwhelming anxiety; also helping individuals learn that confronting these situations won’t result in unbearable anxiety levels. Ritual prevention trains you to resist performing rituals and change beliefs such as those that telling oneself something will make it come true.

Neurobiological rCBF data suggest that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) may produce improvements in OCD symptoms and curb avoidance behaviors, in addition to improving any coexisting depression or mood disorders.

CBT involves engaging in guided activities and tasks designed by your therapist to help ease anxiety. For instance, these may include writing down thoughts throughout the day in a journal and participating in behavioral experiments wherein you face fears such as entering public spaces.


An individual with OCD experiences recurrent and unwanted thoughts or images that cause anxiety and interfere with daily living (obsessions). To ease anxiety they perform repetitive behaviors like hand washing or checking over and over (compulsions). Compulsions may attempt to counteract their obsessions, or they could simply be unrelated.

Medication may be prescribed if talking therapy doesn’t bring enough relief or the symptoms are particularly severe. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), such as Fluvoxamine (Fluvox), are particularly helpful at alleviating OCD symptoms; other drugs like Venlafaxine (Effexor) or Mirtazapine (Remeron) may also be used to treat OCD.

Psychotherapy combined with exposure and cognitive behavioral therapy is often the best treatment option for OCD. People suffering from the disorder report improvements in their daily lives and development of healthy relationships following psychotherapy sessions. People can also enjoy greater positivity, higher self-esteem and a greater sense of control over their own lives as a result of therapy sessions.

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

Utilising targeted magnetic stimulation, psychiatrists can alter nerve activity and neural circuit activity within the brain using targeted magnetic stimulation. For patients who have not responded well to initial treatments, this therapy could offer hope.

TMS utilizes a small device worn against the head that contains a coil of wire that, when electricity flows through it, creates a magnetic field that alters activity levels in parts of the brain known to be related to symptoms associated with mental illnesses – including OCD.

rTMS is a noninvasive procedure, and people don’t require anesthesia. It is typically conducted in a doctor’s office or clinic and takes place over six weekly treatments; many insurance policies cover its cost; it is best to confirm this with your specific carrier before starting treatments. Multiple research studies have demonstrated its efficacy for alleviating OCD symptoms; however, more evidence must be accumulated before reaching definitive results.

Support Groups

An individual’s treatment plan often includes joining a support group. Many find it difficult to describe their condition to friends and family members, so spending time with people who understand can provide great comfort.

People suffering from OCD often find comfort by knowing they’re not alone; “misery loves company” certainly applies here! Additionally, groups can provide an accountability that may be hard to attain via individual therapy alone.

Support groups often include psychosocial education that equips participants with new coping mechanisms they can use to manage their disorder. While support groups may provide valuable support, it should not be seen as a replacement for cognitive behavior therapy or medication regimens; additionally, sessions must be run by someone trained in ERP (Extended Response Protocol) so as to maximize effectiveness of sessions. For help finding one near you visit the International OCD Foundation Resource Directory.