ICBT: Another Great Treatment for OCD!

Another fantastic treatment for OCD is available at Epiphany Center for sufferers of OCD. Inference-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (ICBT) differs from ERP (Exposure and Response Prevention) both in how it views the core problems that drive OCD and in how it approaches the resolution of these problems. For some people with OCD, this shift in approach can offer a wonderful new perspective and a fresh set of tools to help them overcome their struggles. 

Traditionally, ERP has been considered the primary treatment for OCD. ERP views obsessions as intrusive thoughts that are distressing (but in and of themselves unremarkable) and incorrectly interpreted by the sufferer as being both important and threatening. This, in turn, creates anxiety and distress that result in compulsive behaviors to neutralize the anxiety.  Treatment involves gradually reducing avoidance of feared situations while eliminating compulsions. This process therefore teaches sufferers that their fears are excessive and not congruent with the actual level of threat. Tolerance of uncertainty is typically viewed as a core objective of the treatment process and the therapy is largely behavioral in nature. 

ICBT views OCD differently:

Obsessions are doubts that the individual forms through a process of logic and reasoning. This process results in confusion between possibility and reality. ICBT therefore addresses this faulty reasoning process to help the individual use normal reasoning (which sufferers use all day when OCD is not in charge!) in situations that OCD previously controlled. This approach aims to help restore trust in one’s self, senses, and common sense. Exposures are therefore not a primary component of therapy and the primary objective is to teach people how obsessional reasoning can gradually be replaced with normal reasoning in order to eliminate the obsessional doubts that drive OCD. The approach is delivered in 12 modules that teach these concepts, along with practice of skills in and out of session. 

ICBT enjoys solid empirical evidence that it is effective in the treatment of OCD at levels of success that are comparable to ERP. Another tool that can help people with OCD is a wonderful opportunity and we are proud to be able to offer you this approach to aid in your recovery! 

author avatar
Rachel Tombaugh
Rachel has devoted her professional life to helping others heal and reclaim their true potential, working as a psychotherapist and Licensed Professional Counselor in Arizona since 2011. Her therapy approach utilizes a unique combination of compassion, warmth, humor, and clinical excellence. Rachel believes that therapy should feel hopeful and connected, yet maintain focus on clinical sophistication and excellence. Equipped with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Arizona State University and earning her Masters of Professional Counseling from Ottawa University, Rachel’s education inspired her to build a career devoted to helping people live with purpose, confidence, and joy. An accomplished writer and editor, Rachel has contributed to several publications devoted to education and advocacy with respect to OCD and anxiety. Rachel has extensive experience working in renowned treatment facilities in both the public and private sectors of healthcare, serving as Primary Therapist at an inpatient treatment facility for eating and anxiety disorders, developing specialty trauma and anxiety programs as a Clinical Director, and training and developing other therapists as Clinical Supervisor. Most recently, Rachel has worked within the private practice setting and has dedicated her efforts exclusively to the treatment of OCD, anxiety disorders, and PTSD. Offering a clinical repertoire that creates change and ensures meaningful results, Rachel has achieved advanced training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), and Inference-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (ICBT) for the treatment of OCD and anxiety, and extensive training in trauma-focused modalities including Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). Each of these treatment approaches benefits from substantial evidence that it is effective, efficient, and creates positive change that can be trusted. Rachel brings great compassion, warmth, enthusiasm, humor, fun, and innovation to her therapy for each client and is passionate about working with people who have suffered from the traps of anxiety and trauma. Rachel is licensed in both Arizona and New Mexico and offers therapy in person and virtually in Arizona, and via telehealth in New Mexico. When not working with her clients, Rachel loves spending time outdoors with her family, her horse (“Gabriel”), several rescue pets, and a family of screech owls who live at her home in north Phoenix.

Similar Posts