Serving the community since 1999

Specializing in OCD and related conditions

Three Locations in Southern California:

Los Angeles • Woodland Hills
Newport Beach

Exposure and Response Prevention: Is It Effective Via Telehealth?

Chanel Taghdis, LMFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles, discusses the efficacy of Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) for OCD and related conditions when conducted via teletherapy.


Exposure-Response-Prevention-OCD-Anxiety
Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) conducted via teletherapy is effective for OCD and related conditions.

The year of 2020 presented challenges that no one anticipated. A new and misunderstood virus created a world-wide pandemic resulting in shutdowns across the globe. Schools were closed. Restaurants and businesses were closed. Offices were closed. With social distancing becoming the new standard, employees transitioned to working from home. What did this mean for therapists and clients? A pause in treatment? Panic? Uncertainty? Maybe at first, but technology quickly came to the rescue. It is now 2022 and treating clients for a variety of mental health disorders online has become the new normal. At the OCD Center of Los Angeles, we have offered teletherapy for OCD and anxiety disorders for many years, but never at this magnitude. After two years of this transition, the question is: Is online therapy for these conditions as effective as face-to-face, in-person treatment?

What is teletherapy and how does it work?  

Teletherapy is essentially therapy conducted over the computer using a webcam. It is the exact same treatment that is done with clients in person and the only difference is that it is done via camera. The platform we use for online therapy is very similar to Zoom, but it has a higher level of security meant for health care professionals. It includes multiple features and provides a sense of safety that the client’s confidentiality is protected due to the high encryption. 

Is there any benefit to doing therapy online?

The current main benefit of doing therapy online is being able to receive the treatment you need without fear of a virus, especially for those who are immunocompromised. However, there are many other benefits as well. Online therapy provides people with easy access to treatment and some people have reported staying in treatment longer due to the convenience. It is easier to find a time that works for treatment when one is not worried about the commute, traffic, and parking. This is also helpful for people who live far away or don’t have a specialized therapist living in their area. All that is required is a quiet environment and a computer or phone!  

What is Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP)? 

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), which is a type of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), is the gold standard treatment for OCD. When doing ERP, a client confronts their fear in a gradual manner (exposure) and does not engage in their usual compulsive or anxiety reducing behavior (response prevention). Some examples can include touching a doorknob without washing hands after, using the stove without checking if it is off again, driving without turning around to check if anyone was hit or reading about a triggering topic without seeking reassurance after. The possibilities are endless, and the hope is that by gradually exposing yourself to the fear, you will become less afraid or more tolerant of these fears over time. 

At the OCD Center of Los Angeles, we treat all the following conditions online using ERP:  

What these conditions have in common is that there is some obsession (a recurring thought, image or fear that is distressing or uncomfortable). The person then attempts to use compulsions as a response to these thoughts in an attempt to make the obsession go away or relieve anxiety. Compulsions can be observable behaviors, avoidance, reassurance seeking or mental rituals. Exposure and Response Prevention is ideal for these conditions because there are clear obsessions and responsive behaviors that are addressed in a structured format. 

Is ERP effective/beneficial online? 

Many studies have already proven the effectiveness of teletherapy. Research from  Jeanine Turner, PhD, a professor of communication, culture, and technology at Georgetown University who has followed telehealth’s growth over the past two decades, has shown that both patients and providers who use telehealth generally view it favorably. 

Cognitive Behavioral Therapies are specifically very easy to implement online because they are more structured than other types of therapies. At the OCD Center of Los Angeles, we use a step-by-step treatment manual that can easily be shared with our clients and used online.

There are many research studies that support the efficacy of online treatment for OCD and anxiety disorders, including the following:   

  • One study in Australia measured the effects of receiving online Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Response Prevention for OCD in an 8-week online program. The results showed that all participants had a reduction in symptoms and maintained progress after a 3 month follow up. 
  • A study in 2021 in Sweden compared 16 weeks of treatment for OCD in person versus 16 weeks of treatment online for children and adolescents. All study participants were all treated using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with an emphasis on Exposure and Response Prevention. The results showed that there was no difference in progress when comparing the two groups, even at a 6 month follow up. The study also showed that the therapists were able to treat more clients when working online.
  • A 2013 study in Germany randomly assigned clients with OCD to a group receiving online CBT and ERP or a waitlist group not yet receiving treatment. The results revealed the efficacy of online treatment as 90% of those receiving online treatment stated that they have noticed improvement and showed a reduction in symptoms.
  • Another study in Australia studied the effects of online therapy for people with panic disorder and agoraphobia. Due to a lack of mental health treatment, many people turn to their primary care physicians for help with these conditions. In this study, participants who received CBT and ERP online were compared with participants who received in person support from general practitioners. The results demonstrated that the group receiving online therapy showed a higher reduction in symptoms. 

For more examples of studies that demonstrate the efficacy of online therapy for OCD and Anxiety Disorders, you can read this article: https://ocdla.com/telephone-online-therapy-ocd-anxiety

In addition to these studies, many OCD and anxiety specialists, as well as I personally, have witnessed the effectiveness of ERP online over the past 2 years. At first, I was not sure how I felt about this transition, but I soon realized that the online format allowed me and my clients to do exposures together that we would not have been able to do in the office. When speaking with coworkers and other fellow therapists in the field, I noticed a collective pattern as many therapists are discovering the efficacy and even the advantages of doing ERP online. I have compiled a list of examples in which online Exposure and Response Prevention was not only effective, but perhaps even more beneficial than in person therapy. The names and identifying information of these clients have been changed for confidentiality purposes.  

Contamination OCD: Mel experiences fears of getting sick (particularly getting COVID) and spreading it to others. She also fears exposure to fecal matter on doorknobs. Some of her compulsions include avoiding doorknobs and public restrooms, rewashing her hands after she touches a door and separating outside vs. inside clothes. While doing exposure therapy online, Mel walks around her home touching doorknobs and cabinets, sits on the furniture with her “outside” clothes and goes into a bathroom she shares with roommates and touches items without washing her hands. Having her in her home has been a great advantage because most of her compulsions take place in her home and we were able to do the exposures together over video, leading to quick progress. 

Anna lives at home with her mother and fears touching items that belong to her mother who works at a hospital. Anna avoids using any plate/silverware/pans that her family uses, avoids touching her mother and avoids certain foods deemed unsafe. During virtual exposure therapy, Anna can walk around her home and touch the silverware, touch her mother’s belongings as well as her mother, and eat food from their plates. These items would not be so readily available had we been in the office. 

Hoarding: Mark has been hoarding many items such as clothing he has not worn for 10 years as well as any information that he feels he may need one day (including old textbooks, notebooks from school, receipts and thousands of photos and digital files). During session, we have been able to throw items away, working our way up from easiest to most challenging. In the office, we would not have access to all of client’s belongings. 

Harm OCD: Sammy experiences intrusive thoughts about harming herself and fears that she may one day lose control and stab herself. Client attempts to distract herself from violent thoughts, avoids knives unless she is cooking and sometimes checks her body for cuts. During virtual exposure therapy, Sammy began holding different knives from her kitchen during sessions. She has access to plastic knives, butter knives and various sizes of sharper knives in her home. She practiced holding the knife to different parts of her body without checking to see if there is bleeding. While it may be possible to bring knives to the office, client was able to conveniently access whichever knife we were ready for in that moment.  

Hit and Run OCD: Jen experiences intrusive thoughts about having hit a pedestrian while driving or while parking. Client’s compulsions include checking underneath the car after she has parked and turning her car around to make sure she did not hit anyone. Client was able to meet for online therapy through her phone a few times which gave us the opportunity to do exposures while she is driving. Client practiced driving on a street with pedestrians and parking her car all without checking. This example highlights that exposures that are usually conducted in the field can also be possible virtually. Of course, this will require motivation and willingness from clients to go to those places.  

Phobias: Kylie is a teenager who experiences fear of getting locked in an enclosed space such as bathrooms, cars, and elevators. Through virtual exposure therapy, we had Kylie practice going into different bathrooms in her home and locking the door. We also had her practice sitting in the car while locking the door. As the sessions continued, we increased the amount of time client spent in each area and worked our way up to the rooms with scarier locks. Meeting from her house provided client with an advantage as she was able to practice most of her exposures during sessions. 

Panic and Agorohobia: Margo experiences agoraphobia and does not leave her house due to fear of getting hurt or experiencing a tragedy. Margo also avoids going in the yard or the front lawn for an extended period of time. During online exposure therapy, we were able to have client practice sitting in her yard with the gate open for extended periods of time as well as gradually walking from her front door to the end of her block. By using her mobile phone for our meetings, we were able to have the client go further from her home as well. This client would not have been able to do in-person therapy at the beginning stages due to her agoraphobia. 

Checking/Doubting: Alex often doubts if he has turned off the stove and fears being responsible for a tragedy in which his pet dies in a fire. Alex also often doubts if he has locked the car door. His compulsions include double checking the stove every night and having his wife check as well. During online exposure therapy, we had Alex practice turning on the stove and unlocking and locking his car without double checking after. This is another example of how utilizing the client’s home surroundings is an added benefit to online therapy. 

POCD/Sexual Intrusive Thoughts: Miguel experiences sexual intrusive thoughts about children, family members and pets that he finds disturbing. Some of Miguel’s compulsions include avoiding reminders and other people when these thoughts arise as well as researching OCD. During virtual exposure therapy, we were able to come up with many creative exposures such as staring at photos of family members, touching the child’s items, and cuddling with the dog. While it is possible to bring items or even pets to therapy sessions, it was extremely convenient to utilize any items we could in the client’s environment in the moment. This way, the therapist does not have to depend on the client recounting his experience of the exposure but can witness it firsthand. It also might be difficult for someone to bring their dog to the office when they are rushing to therapy after work! 

HOCD: Cameron experiences intrusive thoughts about homosexuality and fears that he does not truly know his sexuality. Some of his compulsions include avoiding any media with homosexual content and examining if his clothing makes him look gay/straight. During online therapy, I was able to share my computer screen with client and look at images, watch movie clips, and read articles or stories. Client also practiced putting on clothes that he was ambivalent about. While many of these exposures can be done in an office with internet connection, this example highlights that there seemed to be no limitation when meeting online. Any document that needs to be shared with a client can be done through screen sharing and links can be sent easily as well through a secure platform.  

These are just a few examples from my personal experience that highlight the benefits and advantages of doing Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) online instead of in the office. Of course, therapists must always assess if a client is a good fit for online therapy and it may not be appropriate for everyone.   

While online therapy has been implemented throughout the past few decades, it had never been used at this extent. It may have taken a global pandemic to force some therapists into utilizing telehealth, but I believe telehealth is here to stay. Even if therapy returns to being face to face, I would argue that adding some online sessions to the treatment plan is beneficial when clients need practice doing exposures involving their home environment. While it is possible to have clients do exposure utilizing their home environment solely for homework on their own time, clients seem to be more courageous and willing to try exposures when there is a therapist present. This allows them a chance to practice doing exposures with some support and direction and they can and should continue to do these exposures on their own for homework. During this pandemic, countless clients have made substantial progress and experience less distress in their life after doing ERP online. In conclusion, the therapist’s presence does not need to be physical for there to be effective treatment and online therapy can even provide advantages to in person therapy. 

• Chanel Taghdis, LMFT, is a licensed psychotherapist at the OCD Center of Los Angeles, a private, outpatient clinic specializing in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for the treatment of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related anxiety based conditions.  In addition to individual therapy, the center offers eight weekly therapy groups, as well as online therapy, telephone therapy, and intensive outpatient treatment.  To contact the OCD Center of Los Angeles, click here.

Leave a Reply

Note: Comments are limited to a maximum of 750 characters. Your email address will not be published.

You have to agree to the comment policy.

Recent Articles

  • Response Prevention for OCD and Anxiety-300Mindfulness-Based Response Prevention for OCD and Anxiety
    Chris Cincotta, LMFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles, discusses how to implement an effective mindfulness-based response prevention approach for the treatment of OCD and anxiety, and how to prevent mindfulness from becoming just another compulsion. […]
    10 Comments
  • OCD Center of Los Angeles - 2021 Online OCD Conference2021 Online OCD Conference
    Kelley Franke, Lauren McMeikan Rosen, Elena Fasan, and Mary Sponaugle of the OCD Center of Los Angeles will be giving three presentations at the Online OCD Conference being held October 8-10, 2021. […]
    No Comments
  • Trichotillomania: My Journey to Treatment and RecoveryTrichotillomania: My Journey to Treatment and Recovery
    Trichotillomania is a condition in which sufferers repeatedly pull out their hair. Chanel Taghdis, MA, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses her personal experience with, and recovery from, Trichotillomania, and how she treats clients struggling with this condition. […]
    22 Comments
  • Skills for managing COVID-19 and OCDHow Learning to Live with COVID-19 Can Help Kids Manage OCD
    Parents can teach kids skills to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic that have the added benefit of helping them cope more effectively with OCD. […]
    No Comments
  • When OCD Comes Between Us: Relationship OCD and RecoveryWhen OCD Comes Between Us: Relationship OCD and Recovery
    Laura Yocum, Lauren McMeikan, and Kelley Franke of the OCD Center of Los Angeles discuss Relationship OCD (ROCD) at the Online OCD Conference on August 2, 2020. […]
    No Comments
  • Online therapy for OCD and anxietyQ&A: Online Therapy for OCD, Anxiety and Related Conditions
    An interview with Tom Corboy, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles, about the use of online therapy for the treatment of OCD and related conditions. […]
    12 Comments
  • Making Peace with Uncertainty: Living in the Midst of a PandemicMaking Peace with Uncertainty: Living in the Midst of a Pandemic
    When it comes to uncertainty and anxiety related to COVID-19, most of us don’t want to feel it. But resistance just makes things worse. […]
    23 Comments
  • Debra Dalton Stein, MFT ~ OCD Center of Los AngelesMy Journey to Becoming an OCD Specialist
    Debra Dalton Stein, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles describes her journey as a psychotherapist from working primarily with eating disorders, to becoming an OCD specialist. […]
    10 Comments
  • OCD vs. GADOCD vs. GAD and How to Tell the Difference
    OCD is often misdiagnosed as Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). The OCD Center of L.A. reviews diagnostic & treatment differences between these conditions. […]
    20 Comments
  • Pure OPure O 101
    People with Pure Obsessional OCD ("Pure O") often feel overwhelmed by intrusive, distressing thoughts. Tom Corboy, MFT of the OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses Pure O and its many permutations. […]
    86 Comments
  • Excoriation (Skin Picking) Disorder, aka DermatillomaniaExcoriation (Skin Picking) Disorder, aka Dermatillomania
    Excoriation (Skin Picking) Disorder is an obsessive-compulsive spectrum condition in which sufferers repeatedly pick at their skin. Crystal Quater, MMFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses her personal experience with, and recovery from, Excoriation Disorder, and how she treats clients struggling with this condition. […]
    78 Comments
  • OCD is Fake News: The brain is a machine for jumping to conclusionsOCD is Fake News
    OCD obsessions are just fake news that your brain makes up. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. Helping clients in California and around the world since 1999. […]
    65 Comments
  • HOCD - 30 Things You Need To KnowHOCD: 30 Things You Need To Know
    HOCD is a type of OCD in which the individual obsesses about their sexual orientation. Here are 30 things you should know about HOCD. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    508 Comments
  • Doubt, Denial, and OCDDoubt, Denial and OCD
    A discussion of "The Denial Obsession" in OCD, in which sufferers obsess that they don't really have OCD, but are merely "in denial". By Lauren McMeikan, MA, and Tom Corboy, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    164 Comments
  • Dermatillomania: A Skin Picker's Guide to the DermatologistDermatillomania: A Skin Picker’s Guide to the Dermatologist
    How one woman with Dermatillomania finally opened up to her dermatologist about her longtime struggle with skin picking. […]
    44 Comments
  • Imaginal Exposure for OCD and Anxiety - OCD Center of Los AngelesImaginal Exposure for OCD and Anxiety
    Imaginal exposure for the treatment of OCD and anxiety is discussed by Tom Corboy, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    232 Comments
  • ROCD - Relationship OCDROCD: Relationship OCD and The Myth of “The One”
    ROCD (Relationship OCD) is an often misunderstood variant of OCD. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    694 Comments
  • Moral Scrupulosity in OCDMoral Scrupulosity in OCD: Cognitive Distortions
    A review of cognitive distortions seen in Moral Scrupulosity OCD, and a discussion of how to effectively challenge them. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    65 Comments
  • OCD in the Family
    One mom's story of her son's battle with OCD and its profound impact on their family, as told to Elizabeth Kassel, MSW, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    5 Comments
  • Scrupulosity in OCD: Cognitive Distortions
    A discussion of cognitive distortions in the religious Scrupulosity subtype of OCD. Part two of a multi-part series. […]
    40 Comments
  • OCD and Eating Disorders
    Diagnostic similarities and differences between OCD and eating disorders are discussed by Kimberley Quinlan, MFT, Clinical Director of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    6 Comments
  • Harm OCD treatment with ERPHarm OCD Treatment With ERP
    Harm OCD treatment using Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) is discussed by Tom Corboy, MFT, Executive Director of the OCD Center of Los Angeles . […]
    186 Comments
  • My Life with OCD
    The impact of OCD and related anxiety based disorders on the family is often overlooked. In this multi-part series, we present first-hand accounts of the ongoing impact of OCD, BDD, and Bipolar Disorder on one man and his family, as told to Elizabeth Kassel, MSW, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    18 Comments
  • Scrupulosity OCDScrupulosity: Where OCD Meets Religion, Faith, and Belief
    The Scrupulosity sub-type of OCD is discussed by Kevin Foss, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. Part one of a four part series. […]
    222 Comments
  • Mindfulness for OCD and Anxiety
    Using mindfulness to enhance traditional CBT for OCD and anxiety is discussed by Kimberley Quinlan, MFT, Clinical Director of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    21 Comments
  • Hoarding, Cluttering, and Compulsive Shopping: My Childhood Story
    One woman's story of her life as the child of multiple generations of hoarders. […]
    12 Comments
  • Thought Action FusionOCD and Thought-Action Fusion
    Thought-Action Fusion is a frequent problem for those with OCD. This issue is discussed by Laura Yocum, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    27 Comments
  • OCD, Anxiety, and Resistance
    Resistance and acceptance in OCD and related disorders is discussed by the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    21 Comments
  • Harm OCD Treatment: Cognitive Restructuring
    Harm OCD is often misunderstood, but it can be effectively treated using an integrated treatment plan that includes Cognitive Restructuring. Part three of our ongoing series that explores "Harm OCD" and its treatment . […]
    102 Comments
  • OCD & Anxiety: Five Common Roadblocks to Treatment
    Learn the five common mistakes that interfere with successful treatment of OCD and anxiety. By Kimberley Quinlan, MFT, Clinical Director of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    26 Comments
  • Harm OCD Treatment: Mindfulness Based CBT
    Harm OCD is an often misunderstood condition that can be effectively treated using Mindfulness integrated with CBT. Part two of a multi-part series from the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    100 Comments
  • Skin Picking Disorder / Dermatillomania TreatmentDermatillomania / Skin Picking Disorder Treatment
    Treatment of Dermatillomania (Skin Picking Disorder) with CBT. Part two of a series from the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    164 Comments
  • Harm OCD: Symptoms and Treatment
    This is the first installment in a series of articles in which The OCD Center of Los Angeles demystifies both the symptoms and the treatment of Harm OCD. […]
    461 Comments
  • Orthorexia: Where Eating Disorders Meet OCD – Part 2
    Kimberley Quinlan, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Mindfulness for the treatment of Orthorexia. Part two of a two-part series. […]
    18 Comments
  • Casey Anthony, Reasonable Doubt, and OCD
    Harm OCD and 'reasonable doubt' are discussed in relation to the Casey Anthony murder trial. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles.unbearable. […]
    10 Comments
  • ABCs of DermatillomaniaThe ABC’s of Dermatillomania / Skin Picking Disorder
    Symptoms and treatment of Skin Picking Disorder, also known as Dermatillomania. From The OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    208 Comments
  • HOCD / Gay OCD: Challenges to Treatment
    Common challenges seen in the treatment of HOCD / Gay OCD are discussed by the OCD Center of Los Angeles. Part four of a four-part series. […]
    439 Comments
  • Orthorexia: Where Eating Disorders Meet OCD
    Orthorexia is an eating disorder in which people obsess about eating only "pure" and "healthy" foods. By Kimberley Quinlan, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    12 Comments
  • Thought Suppression and OCD
    Thought suppression is a common feature of OCD, especially for those with Pure Obsessional OCD (sometimes called "Pure O"). […]
    23 Comments
  • HOCD / Gay OCD: Common Subtypes
    Common subtypes of HOCD / Gay OCD are discussed. Part three of a four part series. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    409 Comments
  • Social Anxiety / Social Phobia: Alone With Witnesses – Part 2
    Treatment of Social Anxiety is discussed, along with its relationship with other OC spectrum disorders. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    10 Comments
  • Social Anxiety / Social Phobia: Alone With Witnesses – Part 1
    Many people mistakenly think of Social Anxiety as nothing more than shyness. In this two-part series, the OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses Social Anxiety and its treatment with CBT. […]
    9 Comments
  • Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) Research – Year in Review
    Tom Corboy, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles reviews research studies published in 2010 related to Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). […]
    4 Comments
  • Binge Eating Disorder / Compulsive Overeating and Its Treatment
    Binge Eating Disorder, also known as ‘”compulsive overeating”, can perhaps best be described as a condition in which one periodically consumes extremely large amounts of food. Kimberley Quinlan, MFT, Clinical Director of the OCD Center of Los Angeles, discusses Binge Eating Disorder and its treatment with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). […]
    7 Comments
  • Gay OCD / HOCD Treatment
    Treatment of Gay OCD / HOCD / Sexual Orientation OCD using CBT and Mindfulness is discussed by the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    196 Comments
  • Gay OCD / HOCD / Sexual Orientation OCD
    Symptoms & treatment of Gay OCD, also known as HOCD, or Sexual Orientation OCD. From The OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    744 Comments
  • Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) and Teens
    Increasing numbers of teens are having elective cosmetic surgeries to address body image issues, without fully considering the physical and psychological risks involved. […]
    No Comments
  • Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) and Body Image in the News
    A discussion of BDD and recent news reports about the condition. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. Serving clients in California and internationally. […]
    1 Comment
  • Treatment of OCD and OC Spectrum Disorders in Children
    The OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for the treatment of OCD and anxiety in children and adolescents. […]
    No Comments
  • Trichotillomania, Skin Picking Disorder, and the Resistor’s High
    The OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses treatment of Trichotillomania (Hair Pulling Disorder) and Dermatillomania (Skin Picking Disorder). […]
    8 Comments
  • Memory Hoarding in Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
    Many people with OCD engage in 'memory hoarding', a mental compulsion to over-attend to the details of an event, person, or object. Memory hoarding is done with the belief that the event, person, or object carries a special significance, and may be important to recall exactly as-is at a later date. […]
    263 Comments
  • OCD and the Law – Part 3
    An Australian pro boxer assaults a 70-year old man on a ferry boat and claims his OCD made him do it. Last of a three part series on OCD and the law. […]
    No Comments
  • OCD and the Law – Part 2
    A Kentucky man murdered his wife and then tried to claim that his OCD led him to kill her. Part 2 of a 3 part series. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    4 Comments
  • OCD and the Law – Part 1
    A Scottish man claims his massive child pornography collection is due to OCD. Part 1 of a 3 part series from the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    1 Comment
  • OCD Stockholm Syndrome
    Something akin to the Stockholm Syndrome occurs in some people who struggle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder ( OCD ). […]
    2 Comments
  • Athletes With Anxiety
    Mental health has long been shrouded in secrecy and shame. So when public figures like professional athletes actively seek help for anxiety, it is a sign of cultural progress. Here are some who have gone public with their struggles. […]
    1 Comment
  • Social Anxiety in Baseball Revisted
    This past week marked the arrival of the 2010 Major League baseball season. And as with last year, this season already has three developing stories of athletes dealing with Social Anxiety. […]
    No Comments
  • Treatment of OCD and Anxiety: A Brief History
    A look at how the treatment of OCD and related anxiety disorders has changed over time, especially the development of CBT and mindfulness for OCD. […]
    3 Comments
  • Tiger Woods, Sex Addiction, and OCD – Part 2
    Sex addiction is misconstrued by many to be a type of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). This article reviews various factors relevant to determining what diagnosis might be more appropriate. Second of a two part series. […]
    4 Comments
  • Tiger Woods, Sex Addiction, and OCD
    Many people, including professional psychotherapists, incorrectly think of sex addiction as a type of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). This article reviews the essential differences between these two conditions and, how therapeutic strategies used for the treatment of OCD are unlikely to be successful when treating sex addiction. First of a two part series. […]
    18 Comments
  • Latisse and Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)
    The drug Latisse is prescribed to lengthen eyelashes, but it has significant, under-reported side effects. This raises two questions - is Latisse safe, and does its marketing exploit women's body image concerns? […]
    2 Comments
  • Proposed DSM-5 Changes for OCD and Anxiety Disorders
    The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has proposed significant revisions to its "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fourth Edition" (DSM-IV). Tom Corboy of the OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses changes planned for the new DSM-5, specifically those relevant to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related anxiety-based conditions. […]
    7 Comments
  • Reassurance Seeking in OCD and Anxiety
    Those with OCD and other anxiety based conditions often seek reassurance that their unwanted thoughts and feelings are not a threat. The OCD Center of Los Angeles discusses the problem of using reassurance seeking as an anxiety management strategy. […]
    92 Comments
  • Phobia Treatment in Unconventional Settings
    Traditionally, phobias have been treated in a therapist's office. But effective help for phobias can now be found in some very unexpected places. […]
    No Comments
  • Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) and Cosmetic Surgery
    Many with Body Dysmorphic Disorder turn to cosmetic surgery in an attempt to alleviate their insecurities. Unfortunately, there are plenty of cosmetic surgeons who are more than willing to cash in on those with this serious psychiatric condition. […]
    No Comments
  • OCD & Anxiety: The Year 2009 in Review
    OCD and anxiety were in the news throughout 2009. Here are our votes for the top stories of the year about OCD and related anxiety based conditions. […]
    2 Comments
  • Bizarre, Disturbing, Weird, and Unwanted Thoughts in OCD
    Everybody has bizarre thoughts. But people with OCD respond differently to these thoughts. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    26 Comments
  • Emetophobia treatment at the OCD Center of Los Angeles with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)Emetophobia and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
    Emetophobia is the fear of vomit and/or vomiting. Tom Corboy, MFT, Executive Director of the OCD Center of Los Angeles, discusses Emetophobia and its treatment. […]
    85 Comments
  • OCD and Mental Checking
    People with OCD often struggle with 'mental compulsions'. The OCD Center of Los Angeles explores how to manage this sometimes baffling problem. […]
    186 Comments
  • Cyberchondria: Health Anxiety in the 21st Century
    The twin explosions of television and the internet have spawned a sharp increase in Hypochondria, and spawned a new mental health issue - 'Cyberchondria'. […]
    8 Comments
  • Is Compulsive Overeating OCD?
    A discussion of compulsive overeating (aka binge eating) and how it differs from OCD. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. Serving clients internationally. […]
    No Comments
  • Cy Young, Zack Greinke, and Social Anxiety
    Zack Greinke has overcome his Social Anxiety to become a superstar in major league baseball. […]
    No Comments
  • Exposure Therapy for OCD and AnxietyExposure Therapy for OCD and Anxiety
    Exposure therapy for OCD and other anxiety conditions is discussed by Tom Corboy, MFT, of the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    46 Comments
  • Social Anxiety Research
    Recent Social Anxiety research is discussed by Tom Corboy, MFT, executive director of the CD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    No Comments
  • OCD Awareness Week
         […]
    No Comments
  • CBT and Evidence Based Psychotherapy
    Unfortunately, many psychotherapists dismiss evidence-based treatments such as CBT, instead choosing to do what feels comfortable for them. […]
    No Comments
  • OCD, Mental Health, and the National Health Care Debate
    A look at the national health care debate, especially as it pertains to OCD and related anxiety based conditions. […]
    No Comments
  • Childhood OCD, Strep Infections, and PANDAS
    There is a growing body of research that indicates strep infections are related to rapid-onset OCD in children. […]
    No Comments
  • OCD and the Swine Flu – Part 2
    Panic about the Swine Flu continues, despite facts that suggest there is no cause for increased concern. […]
    No Comments
  • 2009 Obsessive-Compulsive Foundation Conference
    A review of the 2009 Obsessive Compulsive Foundation conference. […]
    No Comments
  • New Trichotillomania Research
    A look at recent research related to Trichotillomania. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    No Comments
  • Parenting a Child With OCD
    Parenting any child is a full-time job. But parenting a child with OCD can be particularly challenging. From the OCD Center of Los Angeles. […]
    No Comments
  • Social Anxiety in Baseball
    A look at the recent rash of pro baseball players struggling with Social Anxiety Disorder. […]
    No Comments
  • Michael Jackson and Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)
    A look at the sad tale of Michael Jackson and his mental health issues. […]
    No Comments
  • OCD and the Swine Flu
    The past few months have seen an avalanche of news stories on the Swine Flu, despite its relatively low impact in the US. […]
    No Comments
  • Meet the OCD Center of Los Angeles Staff
    Meet the OCD Center of Los Angeles Staff […]
    No Comments
  • Welcome to the OCD Center of Los Angeles Blog
    Welcome to the OCD Center of Los Angeles Blog […]
    No Comments

    
OCD Center of Los Angeles

We're Here to Help

During the coronavirus emergency, our 12 staff therapists are available for telephone therapy or online, webcam-based therapy.