OCD Medication Guide

OCD Medication Guide

This quick guide will help you understand OCD medication and what are the most effective medications for OCD. 

If you have recently identified that you have OCD through an OCD test, you probably have a lot of questions. You are most likely wondering what form of treatment is the most effective for obsessive-compulsive disorder to eliminate intrusive thoughts and help you to stop performing compulsions.

Is there a cure for OCD?

Unfortunately, at this time there is no cure to completely eliminate obsessive-compulsive disorder. But, there is effective treatment for OCD. There are forms of psychotherapy and medications that can help individuals suffering from OCD get relief from scary thoughts and the need to perform compulsions.  

What are the causes of OCD?

What causes this condition is still not fully understood. There are signs that point to genetic factors, which are at least partially responsible for the onset of OCD. There is also evidence that stressful, traumatic events may initiate the genetic process of OCD. In spite of OCD’s challenging nature, getting treatment, and learning to manage symptoms is possible. There are several methods of treatment for OCD.

If you are still wondering if it is OCD, take this online, free OCD test

How Common is OCD?

It is estimated that 2.3% of the world’s population is suffering from OCD. One in every one hundred children suffer from OCD. H

OCD Symptoms

Uncontrollable, unwanted intrusive thoughts 
Repetitive thoughts
Feeling the need to perform certain tasks, actions, or behaviors
Feelings of guilt, shame, and embarrassment 

For more information about OCD symptoms visit our OCD Survival Guide.

Treatment for OCD

According to the International OCD Foundation, there are two common forms of treatment for OCD; exposure response prevention (ERP) and anti-depressant medications (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). 

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP)

The primary form of therapeutic treatment is cognitive and behavioral therapy (CBT), specifically exposure and response prevention (ERP). 

During the ERP therapy process, patients will be asked to face their obsessions head on (exposure) while abstaining from compulsive behavior (response prevention). Facing obsessional fears help patients to habituate to the fearful obsession. 

Learning to abstain from compulsive behaviors provides further relief from OCD symptoms, although this is completely counter to what individuals suffering from OCD want to do. It is so much easier to give in and perform a compulsion but, this is at the expense of reinforcing OCD. Therefore, clients will learn the ways in which they perform compulsions and how to abstain from giving into compulsions. 

OCD & Medication 

The second most common form of treatment for OCD are psychiatric medications. Medications for OCD, like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) have been long established to be an effective way to help treat OCD. 

Best Medications for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Common OCD/SSRI medications:

Zoloft (Sertraline)

Prozac (Fluoxetine)

Lexapro (Escitalopram)

Celexa (Citalopram)

Luvox (Fluvoxamine)

SSRI’s are the only form of medication that has been FDA approved drug for treating obsessive-compulsive disorder in children. It must be noted though that SSRI do not work for everyone. And even in cases when it does improve the condition, getting off them may and in many cases will cause an OCD relapse. This is why exposure response prevention remains the gold standard OCD treatment

If you or someone you love is still trying to identify if OCD is present in their life, we encourage them to take an OCD test