While there is no cure for OCD, other options can help manage the symptoms of obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors. However, TMS might be the next step if you find some ineffective.

tms-therapy-for-depressionResearch shows 1.2% of the United States population has obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). OCD is a mental health disorder that causes obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors. While there is no cure for OCD, many different management options are available for your symptoms. Some of the most common include prescription medications and therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and exposure-response therapy (ERT).

However, the first type of treatment you try may be ineffective. In fact, many people don’t find the first treatment helpful in managing their symptoms. Thankfully, modern-day technology has developed new ways of treating mental health disorders, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), which helps many people with treatment-resistant mental health disorders, including OCD.

At Colorado Recovery Solutions in Colorado Springs, Colorado, Ashley Johnson, DO, and the rest of our team offer TMS therapy as an alternative treatment for your OCD. Here, we explore more information about this procedure, how it works, and if it’s effective for treating OCD.

Understanding TMS

TMS is a non-invasive procedure approved by the FDA. It sends electromagnetic pulses to your brain through a coil encased in a helmet. Your brain is electrically active, and the neurons respond well to these electromagnetic pulses.

The goal of TMS is to either encourage more activity from dormant portions of your brain or inhibit overactive portions. TMS works on targeting the sections of your brain that are causing your mental health disorder. Your TMS treatment plan varies widely depending on the severity and type of symptoms. Dr. Johnson helps to cater a plan that works best for you and your goals. Studies demonstrate that TMS works effectively for those who struggle with anxiety, OCD and treatment-resistant depression.


When used to treat OCD, TMS typically aims at your supplementary motor cortex (SMA). An overactive SMA can cause the obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors that define OCD. By inhibiting the activity in your SMA, you should be able to start breaking away from those thoughts and behaviors of your OCD.

While targeting the SMA is typically the first option to try, if unsuccessful, there are other areas of the brain we can try treating. Most patients with OCD find significant relief after TMS therapy.

What happens during a TMS session

During a TMS session at Colorado Recovery Solutions, you can relax in a comfortable chair during the treatment and will be attended to by a TMS technician the entire time. Each treatment takes about 20 minutes and is repeated five days a week for six weeks to see optimal results. You don’t experience discomfort and can resume your regular activities right after the procedure.

To see if you’re a good candidate for TMS therapy, contact our team to book a consultation by phone or online today.