How does a therapist help in the treatment of OCD?
Therapy can help with gradually reducing the anxiety and distress of the person’s obsessions that may lead to compulsions, challenge their irrational obsessive thoughts, and teach them coping strategies to deal with their emotional distress.
What are the different approaches that therapists use for OCD treatment?
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based, effective treatment approach used for OCD treatment. CBT focuses on changing the negative meanings attached to the person’s obsessive thoughts and thereby reduce the distress and anxiety associated with them. Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) is another treatment approach, which is a type of CBT most commonly used for OCD. In this, the person is exposed gradually to their obsessions that evoke the compulsive behaviours, and prevented from performing those compulsions.
Do therapists need to be specialized for treating OCD?
Therapists can be specialized in Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). However, most therapists in their course of training can conduct Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) and ERP that are effective in treating OCD.
What forms of therapy can benefit a person with OCD?
Individual psychotherapy would be the most beneficial for an individual in the treatment of OCD as it focuses on the particular triggers, obsessions, and compulsions of the individual and provides them a safe environment to learn techniques for distress tolerance associated with the OCD symptoms. Group therapy can also have an added benefit of support, learning coping strategies, and getting constructive feedback from other members which individual psychotherapy cannot provide. Family therapy is another added treatment option that can benefit the person with OCD by involving other family members and helping them become a support system for the person to overcome OCD.