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Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Private treatment, support and therapy for OCD in London at Schoen Clinic Chelsea

Maintaining good hygiene habits like washing our hands and keeping our home clean is something we all do. However, if you feel a strong urge to repeatedly perform such activities, you may be suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).

At Schoen Clinic Chelsea, our OCD therapists are dedicated to helping patients find peace of mind through effective, evidence-based treatment and therapy for OCD in the shortest possible time.

Man with OCD looking at pencils

What is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder?

OCD is a chronic mental health condition which affects millions of people worldwide. OCD is a form of anxiety disorder involving the experience of obsessions, leading to compulsions. Compulsions are repeated actions or activities carried out to reduce the anxiety caused by the obsessions.

OCD can have an extreme effect on your life. Without treatment, you can be left feeling alone, distressed and overpowered by your obsessions and compulsions. It may be that the frequency and repetitive nature of your OCD interferes with you carrying out simple tasks.

How does OCD develop and what causes it?

There are many ways in which an Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) can develop to the point you feel anxious and low in mood. Perhaps you feel that something bad is going to happen unless you count to a certain number. You may seek reassurance from your friends, family or partner multiple times during the day to check that simple things you are doing are ‘OK’. Some of these behaviours do not impact your life too greatly although they cause you some distress.

However, if your need to repeat a number out loud repeatedly starts to affect your ability to concentrate or get to work, or if your persistent need for assurance over issues that other people might find trivial harms your relationships with others, you may have an OCD. If this stops you from doing things, it is restricting you. If any of these things sound like you - you may benefit from our therapies.

Experts are uncertain of OCD's precise cause. The environment, genetics, and anomalies of the brain are regarded to be contributing factors.

It frequently begins in adolescence or early adulthood but it can also begin in infancy. Both men and women are impacted by OCD and it often tends to run in the family.

According to research, communication issues between the frontal lobe and deeper brain areas play a role in OCD. The neurotransmitter serotonin is essentially a chemical messenger that is used by these brain regions. Additionally, images of the brain in action reveal that, in some individuals, serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SRIs) or Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) can help the brain circuits implicated in OCD return to normal function.

OCD may be accompanied by other anxiety issues, depression, eating disorders, or substance addiction.

For those seeking professional support in diagnosing and managing OCD, Schoen Clinic Chelsea in London is a highly specialised private outpatient clinic, offering tailored treatment plans with extensively experienced OCD therapists. Our team has been successfully treating patients with OCD for many years and has the expertise and understanding to support you in your recovery from OCD.

What are the symptoms of OCD?

Obsessions are irrational anxieties, fears, or thoughts. They frequently occur and can cause great anxiety.

Typical obsessions include:

  • A persistent focus on dirt or germs

  • Recurring feelings of doubt (for example, about leaving the iron on)

  • A requirement for everything to be in exactly the right sequence

  • Thoughts of violence or injuring someone

  • Touching or counting over extended lengths of time

  • Obsession with symmetry or order

  • Having doubts about one's personal religious beliefs.

These obsessions lead to compulsive behaviour. Often these behaviours can be time-consuming and obstruct the functionality of day-to-day life. These compulsions can be physical actions, mental rituals or involve a specific number. Sometimes people rationally know that it doesn't make ‘sense’ to carry out the compulsion but the obsessions cannot be controlled by reason.

Common compulsions include:

  • Repeatedly checking, for instance, that a door is locked or that the iron is off

  • Adhering to strict norms of order, such as arranging spices alphabetically, putting on clothes in the exact same order each day and being agitated if the order is disturbed

  • Frequently washing your hands (sometimes more than 100 times a day).

How is OCD diagnosed?

The diagnosis of OCD requires careful evaluation and assessment by an experienced OCD specialist. Our team of specialists follow a comprehensive approach to ensure accurate diagnosis and the development of an appropriate treatment plan.

  • The first step in diagnosing OCD an initial evaluation where one of our OCD specialists gathers information about the individual's symptoms, medical history and family history of mental disorders.

  • Our OCD therapists explore and establish the nature and severity of the individual's symptoms by asking questions concerning specific obsessions, compulsions, triggers, avoidance behaviours and the associated distress.

  • To meet the criteria for an OCD diagnosis, the individual must fulfil certain criteria. These include the presence of obsessions, compulsions, or both, which cause significant distress or impairment in functioning, consume a considerable amount of time and are not directly attributable to another mental disorder.

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Get in touch with our mental health clinic in London to find the right OCD support for you

If you need support to overcome OCD, please reach out to our caring team in London today. We have appointments available in as little as 24 hours so you can begin treatment with minimal wait.

To access private treatment as swiftly as possible, simply fill out our online pre-screening questionnaire at any time to suit you.

How much does OCD treatment cost?

The cost of different types of treatment, therapy or support will vary. See our full breakdown of our prices and funding options for more information or specific costs.

What are the best treatments for OCD?

At Schoen Clinic Chelsea, we offer a highly specialised approach to the treatment of OCD, employing a combination of therapies to ensure the best possible outcomes.

Our specialists offer invaluable counselling for OCD, recognising the individuality of each patient's experience. Our experienced OCD therapists provide a safe and non-judgmental environment, fostering a strong therapeutic alliance to support patients throughout their OCD treatment journey.

OCD therapy at Schoen Clinic Chelsea is highly personalised, relying on evidence-based interventions to help patients develop the skills necessary to overcome their obsessions and compulsions.

Our treatment approach emphasises long-term relapse prevention strategies, empowering individuals to maintain positive changes beyond the therapy setting.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for OCD

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is widely recognised as one of the most effective therapeutic approaches for treating OCD. Schoen Clinic Chelsea employs highly trained psychologists who specialise in OCD counselling, offering patients access to evidence-based CBT tailored to their unique needs.

Our primary goal of CBT is to challenge and modify the obsessive thoughts and accompanying compulsive behaviours that drive the OCD cycle.

Our clinicians at Schoen Clinic Chelsea utilise various therapeutic techniques within CBT to tackle OCD symptoms. These may include cognitive restructuring, where patients learn to identify and reframe irrational thoughts associated with their obsessions.

Additionally, our OCD therapists in London focus on behavioural techniques, empowering patients to incrementally confront their fears and reduce avoidance behaviours.

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) for OCD

One of the cornerstones of OCD therapy is Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP). Our OCD therapists at Schoen Clinic Chelsea employ ERP as a powerful tool to challenge and modify maladaptive thought patterns and behaviours that perpetuate the disorder.

ERP involves exposing patients to fear-inducing situations or stimuli that trigger their obsessions. Under the guidance of experienced OCD therapists, patients practice resisting the accompanying urges to engage in compulsions. By systematically and gradually confronting these fears, patients can learn to tolerate anxiety and recognise that their anxiety diminishes naturally over time without giving in to compulsions.

Our OCD therapists at Schoen Clinic Chelsea provide structured support during ERP sessions to assist patients in managing their anxiety and resisting the urge to perform compulsions. This exposure-based therapy approach, combined with CBT techniques, allows individuals to regain control over their lives and improve their overall wellbeing.

Medication for OCD

While medication is not the sole treatment for OCD, it can be effective for individuals with severe symptoms or those who have not responded adequately to CBT alone. At

Schoen Clinic Chelsea, we adopt a personalised and holistic treatment approach, considering each patient's unique circumstances to determine if medication is a suitable complement to their OCD therapy.

Our private clinic's experienced psychiatrists prescribe medication, typically selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which focus on boosting serotonin levels in the brain. These medications have been shown to be effective in reducing obsessions, compulsions, and overall anxiety levels associated with OCD.

Medication is carefully monitored and adjusted based on each individual's response, ensuring optimal dosage and minimal side effects.

Our approach to providing specialist treatment of OCD at our London clinic

Schoen Clinic Chelsea is renowned for its highly specialised focus on mental health conditions. In particular, our clinic prides itself on providing exceptional treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Our multidisciplinary team, state-of-the-art facilities, and comprehensive approach ensure that patients receive the highest quality of care and the best possible outcomes from their individual treatment.

Our private outpatient clinic for OCD in London boasts a modern and comfortable environment designed to promote healing and positive wellbeing. Our facilities include private therapy rooms, quiet spaces for reflection, and lounge areas to encourage relaxation. At the heart of our clinic is a team of experts who specialise in treating OCD. Our multidisciplinary team - OCD therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, and assistant psychologists have significant experience in dealing with this complex disorder and they collaborate throughout, utilising evidence-based approaches and offering counselling for OCD, to ensure a specialised treatment experience.

At Schoen Clinic Chelsea, we recognise the importance of involving family members in the treatment process, as they often play a significant role in a patient's support network. By involving family members, we aim to create a supportive, compassionate, and informed environment conducive to lasting OCD recovery.

The length of OCD treatment at Schoen Clinic Chelsea varies depending on the severity of symptoms and individual progress. Treatment duration is typically discussed during the initial assessment and is adjusted as needed throughout therapy. It is essential to understand that OCD is a chronic condition, and ongoing management is often required even after initial treatment goals are achieved.

While recovery rates vary for each individual, studies have shown that early intervention and appropriate treatment greatly improve the chances of symptom reduction and recovery. We strive to empower our patients by equipping them with practical coping skills and addressing maladaptive thought patterns that perpetuate OCD.

Our evidence-based therapies and counselling for OCD, combined with a supportive therapeutic environment and ongoing follow-up care, offer patients the best chance for recovery. Ultimately, our goal is to help patients regain control over their lives and achieve long-lasting recovery from OCD.

What to expect from OCD treatment

At Schoen Clinic Chelsea, OCD therapy typically begins with a thorough assessment to determine the severity of the symptoms and any co-occurring conditions. This evaluation helps inform treatment decisions regarding which approach will be most effective.

Different treatment options are employed based on specific symptoms. For instance, exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy is commonly used when individuals exhibit avoidance behaviours or perform repetitive actions in response to distressing obsessions.

OCD counselling also plays a pivotal role in addressing the specific challenges faced by patients, and counselling for OCD forms a significant part of most treatment plans.

Our specialist London-based OCD therapists

Our leading London OCD specialists have extensive experience in helping individuals to recover from obsessive-compulsive disorder. They work with you to identify how OCD affects you so that we can find the most suitable treatment to aid your recovery. Whether that's in a group or on a one-to-one OCD counselling basis, we have an award-winning team of OCD specialists available to help.

The treatment plan is created using a personalised approach based on your needs and symptoms, and it is regularly reviewed by a multidisciplinary team. They will work with you using a consistent and empathic approach and make sure to support you in all facets of your life.

Dr James Woolley

Consultant Psychiatrist | ADHD Specialist

Dr James Woolley

Dr Gil Myers

Consultant Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist

Dr Gil Myers

Gabriele Malinauskaite

Lead Psychotherapist

Gabriele Malinauskaite

Dr Lorena Dumitrache

Chartered Clinical Psychologist

Dr Lorena Dumitrache

Dr Tara Tofiq

Consultant General Adult Psychiatrist

Dr Tara Tofiq

Dr Edel McAndrew

Consultant Clinical Psychologist

Dr Edel McAndrew

Darja Lee

Integrative Psychotherapist

Darja Lee

Michelle Knowles

Highly Specialist Occupational Therapist

Michelle Knowles

Isabelle Nussbaum

Integrative Counsellor & Psychotherapist

Isabelle Nussbaum

Dr Daniel Masud

Consultant General & Addictions Psychiatrist | ADHD Specialist

Dr Daniel Masud

Dr Katherine Coutsoudis

Chartered Psychologist

Dr Katherine Coutsoudis
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