If left untreated, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) can seriously affect your daily functioning, relationships, success in school, ability to work, and mental health. OCD is usually treated with a combination of behavioral therapy (counseling) and medications. Behavioral therapy can help you gradually confront feared objects or ideas, either directly or by imagination. Medications are used to treat the obsessions, anxiety, distress, and other associated mental disorders.

Psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and specially trained primary care providers are trained to treat OCD. If your doctor doesn't have special training, ask for the name of a doctor or counselor who does.

Treatment involves the following:

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Surgical procedures are not a treatment option for obsessive-compulsive disorder. Although, researchers have examined a treatment called cingulotomy, a type of brain surgery. In one study, some patients, who were not responding well to medication and therapy, were partially better after surgery.