The Most Successful Form of Treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: Finding Relief through Effective Methods

Choose the form you think is the most successful!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Apr 10, 2024 07:55
Welcome to StrawPoll, where your opinions matter! Today, we invite you to join thousands of others in ranking the most successful forms of treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). With a vast array of options from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to medication, holistic approaches, and more, we're on a mission to gather a global consensus and help individuals find the best solutions for their OCD journey. Don't see your top choice listed? Fear not, suggest your preferred option and let your voice be heard! So, dive right in and cast your vote, because together, we can tackle OCD and provide valuable insights for those seeking effective treatments. Your participation could change lives, so let the polling begin!

What Is the Most Successful Form of Treatment for OCD?

  1. 1
    CBT is a type of talk therapy that focuses on changing negative thought patterns and behaviors. It has been found to be highly effective in treating OCD.
    Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a widely used form of therapy that focuses on the relationship between thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. It aims to help individuals identify and challenge negative or unhelpful thought patterns and develop more positive and adaptive ways of thinking and responding to situations. CBT is based on the idea that our thoughts and beliefs influence our feelings and actions, and by changing these unhealthy or irrational thoughts, we can experience improved well-being and functioning.
    • Duration: Usually short-term, lasting 12-20 sessions
    • Structure: Structured and goal-oriented
    • Collaborative: Therapist and client work together to identify and solve problems
    • Evidence-based: Supported by extensive scientific research
    • Focused on the present: Primarily seeks to address current issues and difficulties
    Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) in other rankings
  2. 2
    ERP is a type of CBT that involves exposing the individual to their feared obsessions and preventing them from engaging in compulsive behaviors. It has been found to be highly effective in treating OCD.
    Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) is a form of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) commonly used to treat Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). It involves exposing individuals to their fears or obsessions and helping them resist engaging in compulsive behaviors or responses. Through repeated exposure and prevention of their usual rituals, individuals gradually learn to tolerate the anxiety triggered by their obsessions without resorting to their usual compulsions.
    • Therapeutic Approach: Exposure-based therapy with response prevention
    • Duration: Generally conducted over 12-20 weekly or biweekly sessions
    • Focus: Targeting obsessions and compulsions in OCD
    • Exposure Techniques: In vivo exposure (real-life situations), imaginal exposure (imagination-based), and virtual reality exposure
    • Response Prevention Techniques: Actively resisting or delaying engaging in compulsive behaviors
  3. 3
    Certain medications, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), have been found to be effective in treating OCD symptoms.
    The Medication is a specially formulated sleep aid designed to provide maximum comfort and rest during long flights. Taking this medication can help travelers fall asleep easily and alleviate discomfort associated with sleeping on planes.
    • Ingredients: The Medication contains a combination of natural sleep inducers, including melatonin, valerian root, and chamomile extract.
    • Dosage: One pill should be taken approximately 30 minutes before intended sleep time.
    • Sleep Duration: The Medication ensures a restful sleep for 6-8 hours.
    • Non-Drowsy Formula: The Medication is designed to provide deep sleep without causing grogginess upon waking up.
    • Travel-Friendly Packaging: The Medication is conveniently packaged in blister packs, allowing for easy and discreet travel.
  4. 4
    Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS)
    Hellerhoff · CC BY-SA 3.0
    DBS involves implanting electrodes in the brain to regulate brain activity. It has been found to be effective in treating severe cases of OCD.
    Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is a surgical treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) that involves the implantation of electrodes into specific areas of the brain to deliver controlled electrical impulses. These impulses help to modulate abnormal neuronal activity, reducing the symptoms of OCD and improving the quality of life for patients.
    • Targeted Brain Areas: The electrodes are typically implanted in the subthalamic nucleus (STN) or the anterior limb of the internal capsule (ALIC), both of which are associated with OCD symptoms.
    • Surgical Procedure: DBS involves a two-stage surgical procedure: lead placement, where the electrodes are implanted, and subsequent implantation of a neurostimulator device to deliver the electrical impulses.
    • Controlled Stimulation: The electrical impulses delivered by the neurostimulator device can be customized and adjusted by the patient and their healthcare provider to achieve optimal therapeutic effects.
    • Reversible Treatment: DBS is reversible, meaning that the electrodes and neurostimulator device can be removed if needed or if the patient experiences any adverse effects.
    • Efficacy: DBS has shown promising results, with significant improvement in OCD symptom severity and overall functioning in a large number of patients.
  5. 5
    Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)
    Eric Wassermann, M.D. · Public domain
    TMS involves using magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain. It has been found to be effective in treating OCD symptoms.
    Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive brain stimulation technique that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain. It involves placing a magnetic coil on the scalp, which delivers brief magnetic pulses to specific areas of the brain, causing small electrical currents that can modulate neuronal activity.
    • Non-invasiveness: TMS does not require any surgical procedure or direct contact with the brain.
    • Targeted stimulation: TMS can target specific areas of the brain by adjusting the coil placement.
    • Pulse characteristics: TMS allows for various pulse configurations, including frequency, intensity, and duration.
    • Depression treatment: TMS has been approved for the treatment of depression, especially in cases where other interventions have been ineffective.
    • Diagnostic tool: TMS can be used to probe and map brain function, aiding in the diagnosis of certain neurological conditions.
    Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) in other rankings
  6. 6
    Mindfulness-based interventions, such as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), have been found to be effective in reducing OCD symptoms.
    Mindfulness-Based Interventions (MBIs) are a form of treatment for OCD that incorporate mindfulness techniques and practices. They aim to help individuals with OCD develop a non-judgmental awareness of their obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors, allowing them to observe and accept these thoughts without reacting to them. By cultivating mindfulness, individuals can learn to detach from their OCD symptoms and reduce their impact on their daily lives.
    • 1: Introduced in the 1970s by Jon Kabat-Zinn.
    • 2: Based on the principles of mindfulness meditation, yoga, and cognitive therapy.
    • 3: Incorporates formal mindfulness practices, such as meditation or body scans, into daily routine.
    • 4: Focuses on developing a non-judgmental and accepting attitude towards OCD thoughts and behaviors.
    • 5: Teaches individuals to observe their thoughts without engaging in compulsive behaviors.
  7. 7
    ACT is a type of therapy that focuses on acceptance of thoughts and emotions and taking action towards values-based goals. It has been found to be effective in treating OCD symptoms.
    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a popular form of psychotherapy that aims to help individuals develop psychological flexibility and improve their overall well-being. The therapy focuses on promoting acceptance of thoughts and feelings, rather than trying to eliminate or control them, and encourages individuals to commit to behaviors that align with their personal values. ACT combines cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques with mindfulness and acceptance strategies to empower individuals to live a meaningful and fulfilling life.
    • Goal: To enhance psychological flexibility and well-being
    • Approach: Combination of CBT, mindfulness, and acceptance strategies
    • Techniques: Defusion, acceptance, mindfulness, self-as-context
    • Values-Based Action: Focusing on committed action aligned with personal values
    • Experiential Avoidance: Identifying and reducing avoidance of unwanted internal experiences
    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) in other rankings
  8. 8
    Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
    MargaritaJP · Public domain
    DBT is a type of therapy that focuses on mindfulness, emotion regulation, distress tolerance, and interpersonal effectiveness. It has been found to be effective in treating OCD symptoms.
    Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a type of psychotherapy that was developed specifically for individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). It combines elements of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and other therapeutic techniques to help individuals regulate their emotions, manage distress, and improve their interpersonal relationships.
    • Target population: Individuals diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)
    • Core components: Mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotion regulation, distress tolerance
    • Therapeutic techniques: Skills training, individual therapy, group therapy, phone coaching
    • Evidence-based: Supported by research and scientific studies
    • Collaborative approach: Therapist and client work together in treatment planning and goal setting
    Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) in other rankings
  9. 9

    Family-Based Interventions

    Dr. Eric A. Storch
    Family-based interventions, such as family-focused therapy (FFT), have been found to be effective in reducing OCD symptoms in children and adolescents.
    Family-Based Interventions is a type of treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) that involves the active participation of a person's family members or household members. It aims to improve communication, understanding, and support within the family unit to help the individual with OCD manage their symptoms more effectively.
    • Collaborative approach: Families work together with therapists to develop a treatment plan and implement strategies.
    • Psychoeducation: Family members learn about OCD, its causes, symptoms, and the role they can play in supporting recovery.
    • Communication skills training: Family members learn effective communication techniques to discuss OCD-related issues openly and empathetically.
    • Problem-solving techniques: Families are equipped with problem-solving skills to address challenges related to OCD within the household.
    • Exposure and response prevention (ERP): Family members assist the person with OCD in gradually confronting and resisting compulsive behaviors.
  10. 10

    Group Therapy

    Irvin D. Yalom
    Group therapy can provide a supportive environment for individuals with OCD to share their experiences and learn coping strategies. It has been found to be effective in reducing OCD symptoms.
    Group therapy is a therapeutic approach for treating Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) that involves regular sessions where individuals with BPD come together in a group setting to receive support, guidance, and treatment. The sessions are led by a trained therapist who facilitates the therapy process by providing structure and creating a safe and supportive environment for participants to explore and address their emotional and relational difficulties.
    • Treatment Duration: Group therapy sessions typically last for 1-2 hours, and the overall duration of treatment can vary depending on individual needs. It usually involves weekly or bi-weekly sessions over a period of several months to years.
    • Group Size: The ideal group size can range from 6 to 12 participants to ensure a balance between individual attention and group dynamics. However, larger or smaller groups can also be effective depending on the specific circumstances.
    • Psychoeducation: Group therapy often includes psychoeducation, where participants learn about BPD, its symptoms, causes, and coping strategies. This knowledge helps individuals better understand their condition and develop skills to manage their emotions and behaviors.
    • Interpersonal Learning: One of the core aspects of group therapy is facilitating interpersonal learning. Through interactions with other group members, participants have opportunities to gain insights into their own patterns of relating, receive feedback, and experiment with new ways of relating.
    • Support and Validation: Group therapy provides a supportive and validating environment where individuals with BPD can share their experiences, gain support from others facing similar challenges, and feel understood and accepted without judgment.
    Group Therapy in other rankings

Missing your favorite form?


Ranking factors for successful form

  1. Efficacy
    The extent to which a treatment is effective in reducing OCD symptoms. This can be measured by various measures such as the Yale Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (Y-BOCS).
  2. Side effects
    The potential for adverse side effects or discomfort associated with the treatment. Some treatments such as medication can produce undesirable side effects, and it is important to balance the benefits of the treatment with its potential downsides.
  3. Duration of treatment
    The length of time it takes for the treatment to be effective in reducing OCD symptoms. Some treatments such as exposure and response prevention may require several sessions over a duration of weeks or months to be effective.
  4. Accessibility
    The ease with which patients can access the treatment. Some treatments such as individual therapy may not be as easily accessible to patients who live in rural or remote areas.
  5. Acceptability
    The extent to which the treatment is acceptable or desirable to the patient. Patients may be less likely to participate in a treatment that they perceive as uncomfortable or intrusive.
  6. Cost
    The financial cost associated with the treatment. Some treatments such as medication or intensive therapy can be expensive and may not be covered by insurance or accessible to those with limited financial resources.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most successful form of treatment for OCD. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or form is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 151 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each form once every 24 hours. The rank of each form is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.


More information on most successful form of treatment for ocd

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It is characterized by intrusive thoughts, impulses, or images (obsessions) that cause anxiety, as well as repetitive behaviors or mental acts (compulsions) that are performed to reduce the anxiety. OCD can be a debilitating condition that interferes with daily life, relationships, and work. There are various forms of treatment available for OCD, including medication, psychotherapy, and self-help techniques. Medications such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) can help reduce the symptoms of OCD. Psychotherapy, particularly cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), is also an effective treatment for OCD. CBT helps individuals learn to manage their obsessions and compulsions by changing their thought patterns and behavior. Self-help techniques such as mindfulness, relaxation, and exercise can also be beneficial for managing OCD symptoms. It's essential to remember that everyone's experience with OCD is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. It's essential to work with a mental health professional to develop a treatment plan that is tailored to your individual needs.

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