Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a chronic mental health disorder that can cause significant distress and impaired functioning. OCD is characterized by overpowering thoughts, or obsessions, and intrusive behaviors, which are known as compulsions.
Many people experience the occasional urge to check that they’ve locked the car or turned off the stove. However, managing these day-to-day worries is different from living with OCD. People who have OCD often struggle with unwanted thoughts and behaviors that become so time-consuming that they interfere with daily life.
At CenterPointe Hospital, we offer high-quality, compassionate OCD treatment at our main location in St. Charles, Missouri, and our outpatient locations in St. Louis, Missouri, and Maryville, Illinois. By getting treatment, someone who is struggling with OCD can learn to manage the symptoms that are causing distress and live a happier and more rewarding life.
Signs & Symptoms of OCD
OCD symptoms typically include both obsessions and compulsions, but it’s possible for someone to experience either obsessions or compulsions alone. Possible signs and symptoms of OCD can include:
- Efforts to suppress unwanted thoughts
- Repeated physical or mental acts such as hand-washing, counting, or praying
- Attempting to reduce anxiety with repetitive behaviors
- Fear of germs and illness
- Intense discomfort when something doesn’t feel “right” or complete
- Fear of hurting others
- Managing fears by avoiding certain situations
- Having a low tolerance for uncertainty
- Hoarding objects
Many people who struggle with OCD are aware that their obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors may not be rational, but they still find it very difficult to stop engaging in them. Additionally, as someone continues to struggle with OCD symptoms, they can become stuck in a vicious cycle that ultimately leads to greater distress and worsening symptoms.
If you may be suffering from OCD symptoms, you can improve your mental well-being and take back control of your life by getting effective care at a professional treatment place like CenterPointe Hospital.
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) reports the following statistics on OCD prevalence in the United States:
- Around 1.2% of adults struggle with OCD each year.
- Among adults, the estimated lifetime prevalence of OCD is 2.3%.
- In a survey of adults who had OCD, 50.6% suffered from serious impairment, 34.8% experienced moderate impairment, and 14.6% had mild impairment.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), OCD symptoms typically appear before age 35. The DSM-5 also notes:
- The average age of onset for OCD symptoms is 19.5 years.
- Among people who struggle with OCD, 1 in 4 experience symptoms by age 14.
- Adult women are slightly more likely to suffer from OCD than adult men. However, males more commonly experience OCD symptoms in childhood.
Potential Effects of OCD
Without treatment, OCD can have a devastating impact on your life and may hold you back from a wide range of important life experiences and opportunities. Harmful effects of OCD can include:
- Lower quality of life
- Social difficulties
- Avoiding relationships that may trigger OCD symptoms
- Trouble completing work or school projects
- Poor work or school performance
- Failing to get care due to a fear of doctors or hospitals
- Lack of financial independence
- Family conflict
- Thoughts of suicide
OCD is a treatable mental health condition, but it is important to receive a proper diagnosis and seek care as early as possible. If you seek treatment at CenterPointe Hospital, our experts will work with you to evaluate your specific needs and recommend the appropriate level of services for you.
Benefits of OCD Treatment
One of the main forms of treatment for OCD is therapy, but medication can also be helpful for some people.
Participating in therapy during OCD treatment can be immensely valuable because it can help you identify difficult thoughts and feelings and discover healthier and more effective ways of responding to them. During therapy, you can also receive valuable support that can help reduce any feelings of isolation or shame you may be struggling with.
Another important outcome of OCD treatment may be an enhanced ability to handle stress and navigate daily challenges while managing OCD symptoms. Learning how to reduce stress and implement healthy habits can go a long way toward improving your well-being and supporting your healing process.
Therapies Used to Treat OCD
At CenterPointe Hospital in St. Charles, Missouri, we understand that each person’s struggles are unique, and we create individualized treatment plans that can address a broad range of patient needs.
At our inpatient OCD treatment center, your care plan can include:
- Medication management services
- A focus on cognitive therapies and return-to-life strategies
- Group therapies on topics such as coping skills, relationships, and discharge planning
- Experiential activities such as yoga and mindfulness
- Support for co-occurring conditions, including addictions
- Individual and family therapies on an as-needed basis
Choosing the Right OCD Treatment Center
If you have decided to seek professional care for OCD, you may be wondering how to choose a treatment place that’s right for you.
To help ensure that you receive the most effective services and support, it may be helpful to look for an OCD treatment center that has the following features:
- Care provided by a multidisciplinary treatment team
- The ability to provide care at the level that’s right for you
- The ability to provide care for any co-occurring concerns you may have
- Comprehensive aftercare planning
At CenterPointe Hospital, we offer a full continuum of mental healthcare with specialized treatment tracks for adolescents, adults, and senior adults. Our qualified staff includes psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, licensed professional counselors, mental health technicians, art therapists, and more.
In addition to offering personalized care for a wide range of mental health concerns and addictions, we also work with each patient to create a personal aftercare plan. This plan can allow for a more seamless transition out of care and to the next phase of your healing journey.
To learn whether our OCD treatment center may be right for you or a loved one, we encourage you to contact our friendly assessment staff today.
This content was written on behalf of and reviewed by the clinical staff at CenterPointe Hospital.