Memantine For The Treatment Of OCD: Does It Help

memantine ocd

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a common mental health condition characterized by intrusive and recurring thoughts and urges, as well as compulsive behaviours. OCD can severely limit a person’s ability to function in their day-to-day life. One of the most common treatments for OCD is cognitive behaviour therapy, but there are also medications that can help manage the symptoms of this disorder. One such drug is memantine, which has been studied extensively as a potential treatment for OCD. In this blog post, we will discuss memantine and its effectiveness in treating OCD. We will also explore other options available to people living with OCD and how to find the best treatment for you.

What is memantine?

memantine ocd

Memantine (Namenda) is a medication that has been approved by the FDA for the treatment of moderate to severe Alzheimer’s disease. Memantine works by blocking the action of a chemical called glutamate. Glutamate is a neurotransmitter that is involved in learning and memory. It is also involved in the development of OCD. Studies have shown that memantine can be effective in reducing the symptoms of OCD.

How Does Memantine Work For The Treatment of OCD?

Memantine is a medication that is used to treat OCD by reducing the levels of glutamate in the brain. Glutamate is a neurotransmitter that is involved in the development of OCD. Memantine works by blocking the NMDA receptor, which reduces the amount of glutamate that can be released. This helps to reduce the symptoms of OCD.
In addition to blocking the NMDA receptor, memantine can also help reduce anxiety and depression by modulating serotonin levels. This helps to improve mood and reduce symptoms related to OCD.
Overall, memantine can help reduce the symptoms of OCD by decreasing glutamate levels and modulating serotonin levels. It is important to speak with a doctor before beginning any new medication to ensure it is safe and effective for your individual needs.

What are the side effects of memantine?

The most common side effects of memantine are dizziness, headache, confusion, and nausea. These side effects usually go away after a few days of taking the medication. If you experience any of these side effects, it is important to contact your doctor. Some less common side effects of memantine include anxiety, depression, sleep problems, and weight loss. Contact your doctor if you experience any of these side effects.

When Should You Stop Taking Memantine?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of when to stop taking memantine for OCD. The decision should be made on a case-by-case basis, in consultation with a mental health professional. In general, however, it is typically recommended that people continue taking memantine for at least six to twelve months after their OCD symptoms have begun to improve. This allows for the maximum benefit of the medication to be realized and helps to prevent relapse. If you and your mental health professional feel that you are able to discontinue memantine after a shorter period of time, then this may be possible. Ultimately, the decision should be based on your individual needs and situation.

Is memantine an effective treatment for OCD?

memantine ocd

There is limited research on the efficacy of memantine in treating OCD, but available studies suggest that it may be beneficial. One study found that memantine was more effective than a placebo in reducing OCD symptoms, while another showed that it was as effective as the SSRI fluoxetine. However, more research is needed to confirm these findings.

What Are The Other Alternatives For Treating OCD

There are many alternative treatments for OCD, including psychotherapy, medications, and natural supplements. Psychotherapy is often the first line of treatment for OCD, as it can help patients understand their thoughts and behaviours, and develop healthy coping mechanisms. Medications can be effective in treating OCD, but they may have side effects that make them difficult to tolerate. Natural supplements may be a good option for people who want to avoid medications or are looking for a complementary treatment to psychotherapy. Some common natural supplements for OCD include omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics, and vitamin B12.

How long does memantine take to work for OCD?

It is unclear how long it takes for memantine to work for OCD. Some reports suggest that symptom relief may be seen within a few days, while others suggest that it may take up to several weeks of treatment before any benefits are seen. Either way, it is generally recommended that patients continue taking memantine for at least 12 weeks in order to see if it is effective for them.
It is important to note that memantine is not currently approved by the FDA for the treatment of OCD. Therefore, it should always be used in combination with other evidence-based treatments such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Additionally, patients should consult with their doctor before starting any new medication.

Risks And Precautions Of Memantine

memantine ocdMemantine is an atypical anti-depressant which is approved by the FDA for the treatment of moderate to severe OCD. While memantine has been shown to be effective in treating OCD, there are some risks and precautions associated with its use.

Patients taking memantine should be monitored for signs of worsening OCD symptoms or suicidal thoughts and behaviours. The use of memantine in children and adolescents has not been studied and is not recommended.

If you experience any of these side effects, do not operate heavy machinery or drive. Second, memantine may interact with other medications you are taking, so be sure to talk to your doctor about all the medications you are taking before starting memantine. Finally, because memantine is an NMDA receptor antagonist, it can increase the risk of seizures. If you have a history of seizures or if you are taking medications that lower the seizure threshold, be sure to talk to your doctor before starting memantine.


In conclusion, Memantine may be a helpful medication for those with OCD who are looking to reduce the severity of their symptoms. Although more research is still needed on this topic and side effects should always be carefully considered when taking any type of medication, Memantine can potentially provide relief from OCD symptoms. It is important to speak with your doctor if you think that Memantine could help your mental health condition in order to make an informed decision about trying it as part of your treatment plan.

For more information and guidance, please contact OCDMantra. OCD is a mental health disorder characterized by obsessions and compulsions. If you have any queries regarding OCD treatment, OCD Counseling, ERP therapy experienced therapists at OCDMantra can help: Book a trial OCD therapy session