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  • Writer's pictureAli Iverson, Psy.D.

What To Expect at Your First Visit

We understand that seeking help for your OCD may be very difficult and anxiety provoking.

To put some of the fear aside, let's go over the basics of what to expect at your first visit!

Step 1: Schedule a FREE treatment consult

At this consult, the provider you selected will call you by phone at the time scheduled. The provider will structure this free consult - so don't worry about having to plan for this. She will first ask about your symptoms, then briefly discuss treatment so you make sure you feel comfortable and like she is a good fit for you before scheduling your intake. She will also be screening to make sure you are a good fit for the level of care we provide (meaning, some people may benefit from more intense treatment, like an Intensive Outpatient Program that offers more hours of therapy).

Step 2: Schedule and complete the intake

During the intake, you will not be starting any exposures, so don't worry about feeling stressed. Your therapist will be collecting background information, symptom information, and lifestyle information to create a personalized treatment plan. She will ask questions about:

  • Your developmental milestones

  • Your upbringing

  • Family medical history and mental health history

  • Your relationship history

  • Your educational history

  • Your mental health history

  • History of substance abuse or current substance use

  • Your lifestyle (diet, exercise, and sleep)

  • Your OCD Symptoms (the nature of your thoughts and compulsions)

Step 3: Create Treatment Plan

After completing the intake, your therapist will briefly review your treatment plan. She will discuss this plan in more detail at your first visit.

Of important note - when you create a list of exposures with your therapist, please know, that they are successive approximations. That means, your therapist WILL NOT make you face your worst fear the first session. You will slowly build overtime to get to this point. For example, if my obsession was about germs, I would start by visualizing touching a garbage can before actually touching one. You will not move to higher up exposures until the distress drops enough, and YOU are in control of your therapy process.

Have more questions or would you like to schedule a free treatment consultation? Contact us HERE.

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