Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Medically reviewed by Carina Fung, PharmD, BCPPS

OCD diagnosis

It can be challenging to diagnose OCD because its signs and symptoms often overlap with other conditions: namely, obsessive-compulsive personality disorder, other anxiety disorders, depression, schizophrenia, and other mental health conditions. It’s also possible to have OCD along with another mental health disorder.

Some steps that may be used to diagnose13 OCD include:

  • Asking you about your signs and symptoms, including their frequency and severity
  • Performing a physical exam to assess whether any health conditions or medications you’re taking might be triggering your symptoms
  • Conducting a psychological evaluation, including discussing your thoughts, emotions, symptoms, and behaviors. This might also include talking to your family and friends (with your permission). This is especially common in diagnosing children, who may not be able to evaluate their symptoms in a subjective manner.

Specialists will also likely consult the criteria14 listed in the most recent Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5, published by the American Psychiatric Association) to diagnose OCD.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1–800–273–8255 or text HOME to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.

You may also reach out to the Samaritans: Call or text (877) 870-HOPE (4673).

Disclaimer: The information on this site is generalized and is not medical advice. It is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your healthcare professional. Always seek the advice of your healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard seeking advice or delay in seeking treatment because of something you have read on our site. RxSaver makes no warranty as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of this information.

If you are in crisis or you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.