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Old 12-13-2003, 04:53 PM   #1
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hilery79 HB User
Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Hi,
I know others have posted about this, but my health anxiety is really getting out of hand. I have no control over it. The other day my Dr. diagnosed me with a sinus infection. At the time, I was relieved to know this was the cause of my constant headache. I had(of course) been expecting the worst. I looked up every sort of horrible (and really rare) illness I could have that causes headaches. Anyway, I come home happy that all I have is a sinus infection. Then, I look it up on the net finding that in rare cases sinus infections can spread to the brain. Now, I'm scared to death thinking my sinus infection has spread to my brain. I know this is stupid for me to even think this. My husband thinks I'm crazy. Does anyone else go this extreme with their health anxiety's? I know how stupid I sound, but I can't help thinking this way. I spend most of my time worrying about my health. How can I stop doing this?
Thanks for any replys~
hilery

Last edited by hilery79; 12-13-2003 at 04:55 PM.

 
Old 12-13-2003, 08:48 PM   #2
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Some12 HB User
Thumbs up Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by hilery79
Hi,
I know others have posted about this, but my health anxiety is really getting out of hand. I have no control over it. The other day my Dr. diagnosed me with a sinus infection. At the time, I was relieved to know this was the cause of my constant headache. I had(of course) been expecting the worst. I looked up every sort of horrible (and really rare) illness I could have that causes headaches. Anyway, I come home happy that all I have is a sinus infection. Then, I look it up on the net finding that in rare cases sinus infections can spread to the brain. Now, I'm scared to death thinking my sinus infection has spread to my brain. I know this is stupid for me to even think this. My husband thinks I'm crazy. Does anyone else go this extreme with their health anxiety's? I know how stupid I sound, but I can't help thinking this way. I spend most of my time worrying about my health. How can I stop doing this?
Thanks for any replys~
hilery
Quit looking things up on the internet if you can't read bad and good things without thinking that you have them. I have had a sinus problem since I don't remember with my panic attack disorder. The word you need to get past is "Rare". Every illness has rare cases just like the medications that we take. Vitamins have rare cases. You just have to stop questioning everything. It is hard but possible. Read for knowledge and remember, that every symptom that you have has hundreds of illnesses to fit in rare cases. I don't beleive there is a symptom that can be named that is not possible caused simply by anxiety because the brain is creating it. You are just having panic symptoms, nothing wrong with you caused by your sinus infection or anxiety. You are fine, be healthy.

Sickman

 
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Old 12-13-2003, 09:20 PM   #3
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Riana HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

I kno exactly how u feel. I am constantly thinking i have some deadly illness. Everyday that is all thats on my mind. Everytime i get a headache i think im going to have a stroke...i always think the worst. My friends have nick named me HYPO as in hypochondriac............so dont worry...u'll be fine.

Riana

 
Old 12-13-2003, 10:08 PM   #4
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enoch HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

fear of death - sect of buddist monks taking there meals out of skulls - so that with each meal they are reminded of death - they live a life that they deem unimportant to reach death which they deem of the most importance - I have been around people dying in hospitals and seen their fear - fear of dying - they fear dying because they have not had a clue about what life was about - those that have bonded with a spiritual side - do much better.. I love god - yet I still have anxiety attacks and I have still worried about illness - but as I have gotten older and now well within dying range according to the ages of other male members in both my mom and dads family - I am less afraid - there is no way around it - death is the only real reality of the future. with panic attacks I have already died at least a 1000 times - my joke to my shrink is I don't mind dying just as long as I am not having an anxiety attacks at the time. I don't know if this is true - but I after seeing some of the terrible ways others have died - I have shifted the focus from not dying to dying in some sort of painless way - like attached to a morphine drip in a hospital somewhere - which would beat ripped opened on some cold highway after an accident.
You need to refocus your thoughts on illness - behavior modification techniques to get away from obsessive thinking - break the cycle - grab a pen and when you start to dwell on your health doodle and talk out loud away from your thoughts - usually three minute spurts is enough to move away from the thought - just keep the pen handy and when you talk talk about anything like someone was there listening to you - and tell them about your fears - and why those fears are so very real to you.

 
Old 12-14-2003, 06:55 AM   #5
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hilery79 HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Thanks so much for the replys.

I am finally starting to get over a lot of my physical anxiety symptoms and now it's all moving to my mind. Thanks for all the good advice. I have promised myself I am going to stop looking up any sort of medical problem on the internet. I am also having my husband take away all of my medical books from nursing school. It's funny-my rapid heart rate has slowed down since I stopped checking my pulse all the time. Maybe my health fears will start to subside as well, once I stop concentrating on them so much.

Thanks again~

 
Old 12-14-2003, 08:01 AM   #6
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Some12 HB User
Thumbs up Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by hilery79
Thanks so much for the replys.

I am finally starting to get over a lot of my physical anxiety symptoms and now it's all moving to my mind. Thanks for all the good advice. I have promised myself I am going to stop looking up any sort of medical problem on the internet. I am also having my husband take away all of my medical books from nursing school. It's funny-my rapid heart rate has slowed down since I stopped checking my pulse all the time. Maybe my health fears will start to subside as well, once I stop concentrating on them so much.

Thanks again~
I suggest that you do that for a while anyway until you really feel you are ready to cope with reading about things, if you ever do. I did the same thing at one point with an obsession with taking my blood pressure and temperature. These things are all controlled by the central nervous system, and when you are getting anxiety symptoms they jump all over the place and mean nothing. I think you are making a very good decision that will help you get past this. Good luck and be well

Sickman

 
Old 12-14-2003, 10:26 PM   #7
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lori j HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

hilery79, I can't remember if you have ever posted that you are on any meds for this. It is a type of OCD, I also obsess like that, but the AD meds I've been on for the past 7 years really helped me to stop obsessing about health & other issues.
Years ago, a doctor told me not to read articles or watch tv shows about medical things that I was too influenced by things I read or heard, it was good advice, even though at the time I nor he had any idea that I had depression or OCD in any form.

 
Old 12-14-2003, 10:41 PM   #8
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Madj HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sickman
I suggest that you do that for a while anyway until you really feel you are ready to cope with reading about things, if you ever do. I did the same thing at one point with an obsession with taking my blood pressure and temperature. These things are all controlled by the central nervous system, and when you are getting anxiety symptoms they jump all over the place and mean nothing. I think you are making a very good decision that will help you get past this. Good luck and be well

Sickman
Sickman can I ask you something that you mentioned about taking your blood pressure?? I seem to have that problem right now. Whenever I go to the doctor he finds my blood pressure very high because I get very anxious and I panic. My doctor doesn't seem to worry too much about it because he knows of my anxiety problem. I am very worried though. I can't stop thinking about it and I panic all the time. I keep thinking... what if it's high now or what if something happens to me? How did you get reassured that your blood pressure was ok?? I really need some reassurance because I am going crasy.

Thanks
Madj

 
Old 12-14-2003, 10:45 PM   #9
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Madj HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

hilery79 as you can see I am very much the same like you. I worry about everything. Whenever I feel a pain or something I always worry that something really bad is going to happen to me. I am not handling it very good myself right now. I hope you have better luck than me.

 
Old 12-15-2003, 08:50 AM   #10
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Some12 HB User
Cool Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by Madj
Sickman can I ask you something that you mentioned about taking your blood pressure?? I seem to have that problem right now. Whenever I go to the doctor he finds my blood pressure very high because I get very anxious and I panic. My doctor doesn't seem to worry too much about it because he knows of my anxiety problem. I am very worried though. I can't stop thinking about it and I panic all the time. I keep thinking... what if it's high now or what if something happens to me? How did you get reassured that your blood pressure was ok?? I really need some reassurance because I am going crasy.

Thanks
Madj
Dear Madj,
Yes, I did actually prove it to myself and my Doctor. I bought a wrist tester, they cost about $65.00 at a pharmacy. I compared it with my Doctors blood pressure testing equipment and to see how it measured up. I have always had "whitecoat syndrome" which means my blood pressure is around 160/100 when I have it taken at any medical institution or Doctors office. Just Anxiety. I tested my blood pressure three times a day for three weeks and recorded it. I then went back to the Doctor and showed him the results. I actually took it before going into His office. All tests that I did showed normal or around 125/80. I continued the tests for another three weeks or so and the same results. Both times in the Doctors office I was 160/100 or so. Anxiety only. You can prove it to yourself in this manner if you want, but it is best afterwards to not get hung up on testing yourself very often. This just brings on more anxiety. If your doctor is not worried about it, I would forget it. Many people do have this "white coat Syndrome, it is very common. If you need to, get a wrist tester and make sure you take it when rested, not after running around. Wish you well,

Sickman

 
Old 12-15-2003, 02:37 PM   #11
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MDunn HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Hillary,

Have you ever heard of EFT? Stands for emotional freedom technique. Was developed by Gary Craig about 10 years ago but is still not widely known about. It is very easy to learn and use on yourself though I suggest you attend at least one workshop or work with someone trained in EFT to understand how to use the method.

It has a very good record of success with fears/phobias/anxiety of all kinds. Often a fear can be eliminated in just one or two sessions. Earlier this year there was a segment on Live with Regis and Kelly where a therapist used EFT with Kelly to eliminate her fear of rollar coasters.

My own "miracle cure" was for nail biting. I've been a nail biter since before my teens - so for over 40 years. Attending just one EFT workshop eliminated my nail biting - that was over 9 months ago. Whatever stresses were behind my nail biting got eliminated - I still use EFT weekly to keep stresses from building up to where I might turn to biting again. Not everyone has such immediate results but they aren't uncommon either.

Many therapists and hypnotherapists are learning EFT because it often produces results where nothing else does and works quickly and without pain - by that I mean you don't have to recall and relive painful events/memories that might be behind your anxiety/fear.

Michael

 
Old 12-15-2003, 07:52 PM   #12
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hilery79 HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Thank you for all of your replys!

Michael,
No, I have never heard of EFT. I will definatly have to look into it. I've always thought about going to a hypnotist, but I tend to be a little skeptical. I will look around in my area to see if anyone offers this treatment.

Thanks again,
Hilery

 
Old 12-15-2003, 10:27 PM   #13
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Madj HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sickman
Dear Madj,
Yes, I did actually prove it to myself and my Doctor. I bought a wrist tester, they cost about $65.00 at a pharmacy. I compared it with my Doctors blood pressure testing equipment and to see how it measured up. I have always had "whitecoat syndrome" which means my blood pressure is around 160/100 when I have it taken at any medical institution or Doctors office. Just Anxiety. I tested my blood pressure three times a day for three weeks and recorded it. I then went back to the Doctor and showed him the results. I actually took it before going into His office. All tests that I did showed normal or around 125/80. I continued the tests for another three weeks or so and the same results. Both times in the Doctors office I was 160/100 or so. Anxiety only. You can prove it to yourself in this manner if you want, but it is best afterwards to not get hung up on testing yourself very often. This just brings on more anxiety. If your doctor is not worried about it, I would forget it. Many people do have this "white coat Syndrome, it is very common. If you need to, get a wrist tester and make sure you take it when rested, not after running around. Wish you well,

Sickman
Thanks very much for your help. I will definitely try and do that.

Madj

 
Old 12-16-2003, 09:34 PM   #14
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Join Date: May 2003
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hilery79 HB User
Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sickman
Dear Madj,
Yes, I did actually prove it to myself and my Doctor. I bought a wrist tester, they cost about $65.00 at a pharmacy. I compared it with my Doctors blood pressure testing equipment and to see how it measured up. I have always had "whitecoat syndrome" which means my blood pressure is around 160/100 when I have it taken at any medical institution or Doctors office. Just Anxiety. I tested my blood pressure three times a day for three weeks and recorded it. I then went back to the Doctor and showed him the results. I actually took it before going into His office. All tests that I did showed normal or around 125/80. I continued the tests for another three weeks or so and the same results. Both times in the Doctors office I was 160/100 or so. Anxiety only. You can prove it to yourself in this manner if you want, but it is best afterwards to not get hung up on testing yourself very often. This just brings on more anxiety. If your doctor is not worried about it, I would forget it. Many people do have this "white coat Syndrome, it is very common. If you need to, get a wrist tester and make sure you take it when rested, not after running around. Wish you well,

Sickman
Sickman,
I did the same thing. My Dr. never seems to believe me when I tell him my bp is much lower at home. My bp in his office isn't high, but at home it is usually really low. He has me on 100 mg Toprol for tachycardia and this causes my bp to drop down so low I have passed out.
Anyway, I have an electric bp machine and I took the whole thing in with me and showed him the memory. At the time, my bp was running 85-90/60. Well, after seeing this, he finally lowered my dose.

Have a good night.
hilery

 
Old 12-16-2003, 09:59 PM   #15
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Some12 HB User
Cool Re: Can't get over my Health Anxiety

Quote:
Originally Posted by hilery79
Sickman,
I did the same thing. My Dr. never seems to believe me when I tell him my bp is much lower at home. My bp in his office isn't high, but at home it is usually really low. He has me on 100 mg Toprol for tachycardia and this causes my bp to drop down so low I have passed out.
Anyway, I have an electric bp machine and I took the whole thing in with me and showed him the memory. At the time, my bp was running 85-90/60. Well, after seeing this, he finally lowered my dose.

Have a good night.
hilery
Hi hilery79,
Good call, my doctor actually one time told me to stay on the med and if it drops off to much go to the emergency room. I never took the medication again. I would rather have it a little high then dropping off to pass out as you said. I have had it drop to around 68/38 with bp of 36 as I remember once when I was on the medication. I felt fine and we tested myself 4 times and my wife tested herself, my son, we even changed the batteries. Man let me tell you, I got a rush then when I found out the tester was working. I think it shot up over normal immediately. I check out everything any Doctor tells me now and like I have said before, I tell them, "Not to try any magic medicine techniques on me". Good Night

Sincerely,

Sickman

 
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