Will my OCD get better over time?

It gets better over time if you do things that will help it get better and stop doing things that make it worse. Mental health is chronic, just like physical health. You will always have varying levels of health and you can always do things to improve or worsen your health. I don’t have any symptoms of OCD now, but I could always go back to having OCD if I chose to start engaging in compulsive behaviors again. I get lots of questions about curing OCD but “curing” OCD would be like curing slowness–you get rid of slowness by practicing running on a regular schedule, challenging yourself to push past your limits, and making changes throughout your life to support running. If you stop doing all of the healthy things to support your running program and you stop practicing running, then you’ll very quickly go back to being slow again. You won’t become a better runner by hoping that slowness goes away on its own, and you won’t get over OCD by hoping it’ll get better on its own. Health isn’t something you hope for, it’s something you need to do, every day. Unfortunately, when people wait for anxiety disorders to resolve themselves, they often end up avoiding the things that make them anxious or challenge them, progressively shrinking their lives, until they live in a tiny cage built from from their fears and unhealthy beliefs about what they can or can’t do. So get out there and get running up and over the OCD hill in front of you.

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