TMS Therapy for OCD

Struggling to find a treatment that is effective can be difficult for some people.  TMS Therapy for OCD is a great alternative to traditional talk therapy and prescription medication. 


Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a groundbreaking treatment for conditions such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, an estimated 1.2% of U.S. adults had OCD in the past year, highlighting the importance of effective treatments like TMS. This non-invasive therapy uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain, providing relief from distressing symptoms. Specifically for OCD, TMS therapy offers a promising alternative when traditional treatments fall short.

What is OCD?

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental health condition characterized by persistent, intrusive thoughts (obsessions) and repetitive behaviors or mental rituals (compulsions). Individuals with OCD feel compelled to carry out these actions to alleviate the distress or fear associated with their obsessions. These compulsions, though temporarily relieving, can dominate daily life, making routine tasks challenging.



Obsessions are thoughts that cause fear and anxiety. These obsessions cause people to have trouble going about their day without anxiety.

While people without OCD can experience some kind of obsession, they are eventually able to get over it more quickly than people with OCD.  Obsessions can be any thoughts that cause distress.

  • Examples of obsessions:
  • Contamination
  • Taboo behaviors
  • Harm
  • Perfection

These are just a few of the many obsessions that people suffer with.


When someone wants to relieve these obsessions, they may complete a certain action, which is the compulsion.

Compulsions are typically repeated to find relief from whatever obsession the person is dealing with.

Types of compulsions:

  • Checking compulsions
  • Mental compulsions
  • Repeating compulsions
  • Cleaning compulsions
  • Symmetry and ordering

Any behavior that someone acts out to get rid of fear from an obsession is a compulsion.

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How TMS Helps with OCD

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is often linked to hyperactivity in certain brain regions, such as the Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex, Orbitofrontal cortex, and the Pre-Supplementary Motor Area. These areas play crucial roles in our reactions to anxieties and ritualistic behaviors characteristic of OCD.

TMS targets and modulates these specific regions, recalibrating their neural activity. By doing so, TMS can alleviate obsessions and compulsions, breaking the cycle of obsession, anxiety, compulsion, and temporary relief, offering a new avenue for managing OCD.

When Should You Get TMS for OCD?

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) can be a profoundly challenging condition to live with, and finding the right treatment can sometimes be a trial-and-error process. While traditional treatments such as medications or cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) are effective for many, they might not work for everyone. TMS emerges as a revolutionary alternative under the following circumstances:

  • Disruption of Daily Activities: If your OCD symptoms are so overpowering that they interfere with your daily tasks, work responsibilities, social interactions, or overall quality of life, it might be a sign to seek alternative treatments.
  • Medication Intolerance: Many people discontinue certain OCD medications due to intolerable side effects, ranging from drowsiness, dizziness, and weight gain, to more severe reactions. If you’re among those who can’t bear or don’t wish to endure these side effects, TMS might be a suitable choice.
  • Limited Efficacy of Traditional Therapies: Some individuals undergo various treatment regimens, including extensive therapy sessions, only to find the relief is temporary or insufficient. If other treatments haven’t provided the long-term relief you desire, TMS can be an option.
  • Preference for Non-invasive Treatment: Unlike some other treatments, TMS doesn’t require sedation, surgery, or any invasive procedure. If you prefer a treatment that operates externally, TMS could be your answer.
  • Rapid Symptom Relapse: If your symptoms return quickly after stopping medication or between therapy sessions, TMS may offer a more sustained relief given its direct approach to modulating brain activity.

According to a study from 2020, 65.3% of individuals who experienced OCD symptoms reported severe disruptions in their daily roles. Considering TMS could be vital if you’re among those feeling significantly impacted. Especially when other treatments seem ineffective, always engage with a healthcare expert to ascertain if TMS aligns with your unique requirements.

Benefits of TMS Therapy For OCD

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) has rapidly gained traction as an innovative treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). This is largely due to its unique advantages, which differentiate it from other available treatments:

Non-Invasive Nature

One of the most significant benefits of TMS is its non-invasive approach. Patients need not undergo surgery, have implants placed, or face the challenges typically associated with more invasive procedures. This feature makes it particularly appealing for those who might be apprehensive about surgical treatments or the potential complications they might entail.

Minimal Side Effects

While all treatments come with their set of side effects, TMS stands out for its minimalism in this regard. The most commonly reported side effect is a slight discomfort at the treatment site, which usually diminishes with time. This contrasts sharply with other treatments, especially medications, which can sometimes lead to many systemic side effects.

Quick and Convenient Treatment Sessions

In today’s fast-paced world, lengthy medical procedures can be a deterrent. TMS therapy addresses this concern with its relatively short sessions. Typically lasting 18-37 minutes, these sessions can easily be scheduled during lunch breaks or between daily tasks, ensuring minimal disruption to a patient’s routine. Additionally, there’s no recovery period post-session, allowing patients to immediately resume their activities.

FDA Approved

Achieving FDA approval is a testament to a treatment’s efficacy and safety. TMS has not only been recognized by the FDA but has also been approved for the treatment of both OCD and depression. This approval provides patients and clinicians alike with the confidence that TMS is a credible, effective, and safe treatment option.

TMS Therapy Treatment for OCD at Clearwave Mental Health

At Clearwave Mental Health, we prioritize your holistic well-being. Our TMS treatments are tailored to your specific symptoms and needs. Starting with an in-depth consultation, we assess your medical history and the severity of your OCD, and a custom treatment plan is developed, typically spanning 36 sessions.

During each session, our team ensures your utmost comfort, allowing you to relax, read, or even watch TV. Furthermore, recognizing the financial concerns surrounding treatments, we collaborate with various insurance providers and offer flexible payment options. Your journey to an OCD-free life is just a consultation away. Contact us today to learn more about TMS therapy for OCD.

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Valhalla, NY

Poughkeepsie, NY

Poughkeepsie, NY

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Clearwave Mental Health is New York's premier TMS and Psychiatric Provider servicing Poughkeepsie, Valhalla, Middletown, Nanuet, Westchester, New York, and the Hudson Valley. Our mission is to provide compassionate, personalized, individualized, and effective mental health care for our community.

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370 Violet Ave Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

115 E Stevens Ave, Suite 108, Valhalla, NY 10595

75 Crystal Run Road, Suite 103, Middletown, NY 10941

25 Smith St, Suite 314, Nanuet, NY 10954