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Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

We provide a range of psychological services related to obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).

What is obsessive compulsive disorder?

OCD is a mental health difficulty which involves repetitive, irrational and intrusive thoughts alongside the irresistible urge to carry out a compulsive action or ritual. OCD can lead to great disruption to the lives of people who experience it, and the people around them. OCD is more commonly found in adults than children.

Everyone has insistent thoughts at times, however in OCD when an individual has obsessive thoughts they become persistent and overwhelming and cause extreme anxiety. This anxiety leads the individual to feel as though they need to carry out a compulsion, and it is only when this compulsion has been completed that some relief is felt. Obsessive beliefs can become extremely rigid and problematic leading to a complete breakdown in functioning. OCD has similarities with a number of conditions, which is why it should be diagnosed following the ruling out of other conditions, including autistic spectrum conditions (ASC).

Common types of compulsive behaviour in people with OCD include:

  • Cleaning and hand washing
  • Checking – such as checking doors are locked or that the gas is off
  • Counting
  • Ordering and arranging
  • Hoarding
  • Asking for reassurance
  • Repeating words in their head
  • Thinking ‘neutralising’ thoughts to counter the obsessive thoughts
  • Avoiding places and situations that could trigger obsessive thoughts

Not all compulsive behaviours will be obvious to other people.

NHS, Symptoms of OCD (2016)

OCD: characterised by the presence of either obsessions or compulsions, but commonly both.

Symptoms can cause significant functional impairment and/or distress. An obsession is an unwanted intrusive thought, image or urge that repeatedly enters the person’s mind. Compulsions are repetitive behaviours or mental acts that the person feels driven to perform. These can be either overt and observable by others, such as checking that a door is locked, or a covert mental act that cannot be observed, such as repeating a certain phrase in one’s mind.

It is thought that 1–2% of the population have OCD, although some studies have estimated 2–3%.

Obsessive compulsive disorder, NICE Clinical Guideline 31 (2005)

Our process

At HSR Psychology we ensure that we meet the needs of children and young people. To achieve this we ensure that any specific assessments, intervention, or direct work, is only carried out following an initial discussion.

An initial discussion allows us to understand the background and your expectations of our involvement. Having an initial discussion ensures any services we provide appropriately identify or address needs.

Our process for any specific assessments, intervention, or direct work is as follows:

Step 1: Contact us

We will usually be contacted by the child or young person, parent or carer, or another professional (eg education or health).

You can contact us or complete a referral

Step 2: Arrange an initial discussion

An initial discussion allows us to understand the background and your expectations of our involvement. Arrange an initial discussion

Step 3: Review our recommendations

Following an initial discussion we will send you an email that includes:

  • Next steps recommendations - to provide a bespoke package of support. For example:
    • Assessments
    • Reports
    • Information gathering
    • Meeting
    • Interventions
    • Consultancy
    • Reviews
  • Costing - we will provide costings for any services recommended.

Step 4: Let's get started

On receipt of the next steps recommendations and costing you can decide how to proceed. Once you have decided contact us to arrange the chosen services.

How is obsessive compulsive disorder assessed?

Assessing for OCD can include the following components:

Clinical interview

A clinical interview is used to assess the impact that obsessions and / or compulsions may be having on an individual’s life, and what they involve.

Psychometric assessment

A psychometric assessment may be used to assess areas of thinking and rationalising, for example a short questionnaire asking about specific behaviours.


Individuals may have kept a journal of their obsessions and / or compulsions, if this is the case then it can be useful to look at the development of needs.

Which assessments do we use for OCD?

Due to the mental health associations of OCD we may use a variety of assessments according to an individual’s needs.

Examples of psychometric assessments we may use include:

  • CMOCS - Children's measure of obsessive compulsive symptoms covers these six areas; rituals, fear of contamination, intrusive thoughts, fear of mistakes/harm, checking, picking/slowing
  • SDQ - Strengths and difficulties questionnaire helps us to identify areas of need which therapeutic interventions may target
  • BECK youth inventories - These assessments provide a broad range of information relating to an individuals mental health

As OCD is a very individualised condition, the assessments chosen will be handpicked for an individual. If you have any questions relating to assessments then these can be answered during the Initial Discussion, or at any stage of the assessment process.

What are the interventions that we provide for obsessive compulsive disorder?

We provide the following interventions for OCD:

We provide the following interventions for OCD:

We are also able to provide interventions for children and young adults who have been prescribed medication for their OCD. 

Arrange an Initial Discussion

Arrange an Initial Discussion to find out how we can help. The initial discussion lasts 1-1.5 hours, comes with a written recommendation summary and is a starting point to identify needs. The cost is £300.

  • No waiting lists
  • Experienced psychologists
  • Includes recommendation summary

Find out more



What makes us different

Access to a named psychologist

Focus on mental health and wellbeing

Joined-up approach

Bespoke services to meet needs

Multidisciplinary team

Holistic approach

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Flexible, consistent, and competitively priced

We provide bespoke solutions to suit all budgets and requirements for children and young people aged 0-25 in homes, education settings and the community. Our clinical, educational and child psychology services are cost effective.

See our prices

Make a referral

To make a referral and arrange an initial discussion please complete our referral form.

Make a referral

Contact us

Ready to get started? The next step is to speak to our team to find out more about the services we provide and how we can help. Call us on 0161 820 9229 or email

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