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Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is when individuals have obsessive thinking patterns, including unwanted thoughts, images, or urges that make them anxious or distressed. Other examples of OCD can include fear of contamination, doubts about completing a task, or thoughts of aggression. Individuals with OCD often have significant difficulty pushing away or ignoring these thoughts.

Because OCD is chronic and debilitating and can impact daily life, family and social relationships, and overall quality of life, our OCD treatment center at TRUE Addiction and Behavioral Health can help.

Why OCD Treatment is Important

OCD is a public health concern in Tennessee, and its prevalence in Atlanta continues to grow. OCD affects people of all ages and backgrounds. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), close to 1.2% of adults in the U.S.

Even with leading OCD treatment centers, such as TRUE Addiction and Behavioral Health, less than half of the people who have it seek any treatment.

Tennessee Voices explains that even though OCD can impact people’s lives from all backgrounds and walks of life, it tends to be more commonly diagnosed in boys than girls. One in every 100 adolescents has OCD. It can be quite debilitating when it comes to carrying out daily tasks.

Several other mental health disorders frequently co-occur with OCD. Our trained mental health professionals can diagnose and provide appropriate treatment for pre-existing mental health disorders and OCD.

Why Choose Us for OCD Treatment?

Our individualized treatment programs and approaches focus on each client’s specific needs. Working with a therapist, you will develop an individualized plan to meet your needs using evidence-based practices.

Because OCD affects each person differently, a customized approach must be considered. We can then uncover underlying issues that increase the chances of long-term recovery, whether through therapy, holistic methods, or a combination of services.

Research has found a correlation between substance abuse and OCD, and those with mood disorders tend to develop substance abuse disorders at a higher rate. The severity for each person depends on the nature of their anxiety disorder and other underlying or pre-existing conditions.

Several statistics support the need for effective treatment resulting from OCD and co-occurring substance abuse. In 2023, 37.3% of Tennessee adults reported mental health disorder symptoms and substance use disorder (SUD), which indicates the need for effective treatment.

Our Approach to OCD Treatment

At TRUE, we offer several therapies in the form of individualized treatment. Our comprehensive programs target all aspects of distress within the individual in a structured and flexible way.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Our therapists provide evidence-based cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in individual therapy, group therapy, or family/couples interventions. There are various methods in behavioral health for which CBT is utilized, including:

  • Positive CBT is a form of CBT that focuses on the steps that our clients take to work out their OCD tendencies. From there, we build on those actions to create a toolbox of measures.
  • Trauma-focused CBT addresses the underlying trauma that is often the cause of OCD and co-occurring substance abuse. Trauma-focused CBT can be sensitive for some clients because they have to recall the traumatic experiences or memories that led to OCD disorder.
  • Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) focuses on helping our clients develop strategies to adapt to changing situations and shift their perspectives when responding to challenges. When adding this approach to our client’s OCD treatment plan, we can better provide the tools to navigate life, manage stress and anxiety, and maintain positive social relationships.
  • Mindfulness CBT focuses on meditation to help clients consciously focus on their thoughts and feelings. Mindfulness CBT identifies negative thought patterns that spark obsessive-compulsive tendencies and develop ways to work through them.

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy

Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is a cognitive behavioral and psychological practice used to treat OCD. DBT effectively treats many other disorders, such as substance dependence, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), that may be underlying factors for OCD.

DBT helps clients who struggle with managing their emotions and relationships and those considering self-harm. This treatment service is ideal for individuals with emotion regulation, impulse control, and social difficulties brought on by OCD.

Group Therapy

Group therapy occurs in a supportive environment with others who have OCD. Our therapists understand the importance of having a support system so each person takes turns expressing their struggles, feelings, experiences, and goals. The therapist facilitates the conversation and ensures that participants address the issues, not each other.

In group therapy, we tailor the sessions to specific topics that benefit each client. Those topics include avoiding triggers, handling social settings and relationships, and developing and maintaining relationships, among other issues.

Holistic Therapy

Holistic therapy is an alternative treatment service that focuses on the whole person, not just specific addiction-related symptoms. Our therapists consider our clients’ physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being, allowing them to achieve balance and develop coping skills. Our holistic options include music therapy, art therapy, yoga, fitness, animal therapy, movement therapy, and acupuncture.

Our OCD Treatment Programs

For individuals struggling with OCD, substance abuse, or other conditions, we offer comprehensive programs that target all aspects of distress within the individual in a structured and flexible way. We can approach various needs with varying levels of care with our treatment options.

Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)

Our intensive outpatient program (IOP) allows clients to have a flexible treatment schedule where they can continue daily activities and still receive care. Our clients choose the plan that works with their outside obligations. IOP provides more support than traditional outpatient programs because therapy sessions are more frequent, and clients can participate in more support group activities.

Our outpatient treatment also costs less since the commitment isn’t full-time. While the cost may be lower, access to quality treatment remains the same. Our clients at Southeast Addiction Center will receive access to services, including cognitive behavioral therapy, courses on coping skills, dialectical behavior therapy, medication management, and other forms of mental health treatment.

Our IOP program includes access to group therapy, holistic therapy, and trauma-informed care. These are all effective for treating OCD symptoms. Trauma-informed care is a form of treatment that provides clients with accurate and current information about mental health issues, which allows our clients to have a say in making informed decisions about their treatment plans.

Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP)

Our treatment center’s partial hospitalization program (PHP) benefits individuals struggling with OCD and related anxiety disorders. This program is ideal for patients needing more than outpatient care without 24/7 inpatient treatment.

Our PHP program and clinicians help individuals with symptoms of OCD by providing a safe and structured environment with access to medical supervision, including therapy with family members and one-on-one and group therapy with individuals with the same mental health disorder and substance abuse issues.

PHP is ideal for addressing the symptoms of OCD and co-occurring substance abuse because it includes individual and group therapy, medication management, and other experiential therapies. Our clients can access care during the day and return home in the evenings to continue their routines. You can practice new behaviors, overcome anxiety, and build social connections in a supportive community.

Identifying High-Risk OCD Factors

OCD is a disorder that impacts people of all ages and backgrounds worldwide. The causes are unknown, but risk factors include:

  • Genetics: Close relatives are more likely to develop the disorder themselves.
  • Brain Structure: Brain imaging has found structural differences in the brains of people with OCD. The parts affected are those responsible for processing emotions, decision-making, and impulse control.
  • Brain Functioning: Individuals with OCD have abnormalities in specific brain areas. These abnormalities present as difficulty in decision-making and impulse control and interfere with motor movements and cognitive processes.
  • Environment: Air pollution, noise, and chemical exposure can trigger compulsive behaviors and intrusive thoughts in individuals with OCD. Cluttered environments can play a role as well.

Forms of OCD Treated at TRUE

We treat five different forms of OCD at our treatment center. Regardless of the type our clients are experiencing, our intensive treatment produces results that lead to long-term recovery while keeping each person’s needs at the center of what we do.


Checking is an obsession with causing damage or harm from being careless. Checking can lead to making sure the door is locked, the stove is off, or items are still stored in their wallet, such as cash, cards, and identification. Individuals who perform checking rituals will check for their items multiple times or even stare at the things for long periods to feel a sense of ease.

Contamination / Mental Contamination

Contamination is the fear that one is near illness or viruses that can be easily spread to them. Some individuals also experience contamination of everyday things and people, which makes them feel unclean. This results in obsessive hand washing to stop the spread of possible contamination. These behaviors lead some individuals to avoid certain people, objects, or places for fear of getting sick.

Symmetry and Ordering

One of the most recognizable forms of OCD is the obsession with objects being in a precise position, which usually involves making sure things are organized with symmetry.

For example, wall hangings need to be positioned the same way, or canned goods in a pantry must all be turned the same way. If the person doesn’t perform the compulsions to make everything just right, they might experience distress or thoughts that harm or danger will ensue if they aren’t corrected.

Ruminations / Intrusive Thoughts

When a person with OCD gets something stuck in their head, it can be distressing. Individuals who experience ruminations tend to get stuck on a topic for a long time and ignore personal obligations while fixating on a solution to the problem. In addition, when they focus on a topic for too long, they feel unsatisfied or empty.

When individuals experience intrusive thoughts, they typically happen randomly and can involve self-harm or harming a loved one or stranger. To silence these obsessive thoughts, an individual might resort to compulsive behaviors or repeated words to calm down.


The excessive and compulsive cumulation of items characterizes hoarding. The result is a cluttered living space that interferes with daily life. When hoarding, individuals continue to have patterns of intrusive thoughts and other unwanted behaviors.

Get the Help You Deserve Now

If you’re ready to break the mental entrapment of obsessive-compulsive disorder and co-occurring substance use disorders, call us. Our team understands each person has a unique set of needs, and we have an obsessive-compulsive disorder treatment team equipped to handle each. Our treatment team is ready to help you or your loved one.