Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder treatment

Treatment for obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) can help people with traits and behaviors that are distressful and impact social and occupational functioning. Patients with OCPD may benefit from psychosocial therapy and cognitive-behavioral therapy. Therapies enable the patient’s self-awareness and understanding of their disorder, so they can learn ways to be more adaptable. It reduces rigidity and the obsessive need for control. People with OCPD are generally resistant to change in the early stages of treatment, but this gradually improves with ongoing therapy.

A treatment plan may also incorporate acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and relaxation techniques to assist the person develop a feeling of balanced, valuable living. Drugs may help regulate specific symptoms only under specific conditions, such as when managing extreme anxiety, rage, or despair.

A woman with OCD looking in a mirror

Who and how we help

Treatment for obsessive-compulsive personality disorder in adults

Psychological therapies encompass a wide range of interventions but for this review may be broadly classified into behavioral interventions, including cognitive behavioral therapy and other interventions that are proven to be effective for OCPD. At the core of treatment for obsessive-compulsive personality disorder, is psychotherapy. Treatments can be administered in the form of individual or group-based therapy, or both. The emphasis is on getting the patient to question their fundamental beliefs and make connections between their past and present problems by reflecting on their internal thought processes. By enhancing abilities and the capacity to control different emotions, patients can also control their behavior. Drugs may be prescribed to supplement treatment.

Treatment for obsessive-compulsive personality disorder in adolescents

Teenagers with OCPD demonstrate problematic behaviors that often diverge greatly from social norms. And their attitudes and actions can frustrate and irritate others. The manifestation of OCPD will vary depending on the individual. Treatment assists adolescents in working through their concerns, learning how to manage responses to avoid conflict, and increasing their awareness of how they affect others. Mental health specialists work with youngsters using a combination of various therapies to alter obsessive behaviors and introduce positive actions and practices that will help them evolve. To develop the capacity to respond purposefully and under control to stress and problems in life, therapists also assist young patients in developing appropriate coping mechanisms.

Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder treatment steps

The first step in treating a personality disorder is to get a correct diagnosis and identify any potential coexisting conditions such as an eating disorder or anxiety. A trained mental health professional will devise a treatment plan consisting of one or more treatments that may include psychotherapy and behavioral therapy. The therapist will utilize different techniques to understand the patient’s subconscious motivations to identify the root cause. By targeting specific issues, therapy works to make gradual changes that have positive effects. Family and group therapy promote constructive dialogue and patients can create a new support network in group therapy while family therapy gives people the chance to fortify an already-existing support network.

woman sitting and explaining her symptoms

The benefits of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder treatment

The Good Health team offers a therapeutic environment designed to help teenagers and adults express their problems and improve their mental health. Our expert psychiatrists and psychologists use a range of effective therapies to encourage patients to question their self-criticism and replace it with respect for their intrinsic personal talents rather than viewing them as defensive or reactionary. The Good Health clinicians create and employ strategies for the treatment of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder and therapy is tailored to each and every patient to ensure the best outcomes. Perfectionism, desire, or self-control are ingrained characteristics that people have developed over time to gain acceptance and feel safer. Our team of therapists work with patients to combat emotions of shame and insecurity while establishing their deservingness of respect, inclusion, and connection.


How obsessive-compulsive personality disorder affects everyday life?

People with OCPD spend an unnecessary amount of time repeating certain compulsions and rituals and they may go to extreme measures to avoid situations that exacerbate their condition. It can also cause a lot of frustration and tension with family members and at work.

How do you know you need an obsessive-compulsive personality disorder treatment?

A pervasive obsession with orderliness, perfectionism, and control that impairs daily living and affects relationships are possible signs of having OCPD.  If you or a loved one suspect they have OCPD, getting a clinical diagnosis is crucial to determine the best obsessive-compulsive personality disorder treatment options.

What are the best obsessive-compulsive personality disorder treatment options?

Effective OCPD therapies include individual, family, and group talk therapy, exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy, and/or cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Treatments reduce associated symptoms while working on modifying unproductive behaviors.

What can OCPD lead to if not treated?

OCPD can impact relationships and lead to depression and isolation. People with OCPD may not attempt new endeavors or enjoy activities that do not provide instant reward and satisfaction, which can limit their potential. A relentless pursuit of perfection can result in anxiety, eating disorders, as well as other physical and mental health issues.

How many therapy sessions are needed for obsessive-compulsive disorder?

Generally, patients see reduction in symptoms after 12 therapy sessions. The individual’s health, age, severity of their condition, and co-occurring mental health illnesses are the main aspects that determine the duration of treatment.

How difficult is it to treat an OCP disorder?

Even when someone is willing to ask for assistance, treating OCPD can be difficult because of the patient’s need to exert control and desire to remain inflexible. However, over time, people with OCPD will significantly benefit more from treatment when they comply strictly with the therapist’s prescribed course of treatment.

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