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Fear of illness

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Old 09-13-2004, 10:05 AM   #1
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 9
51anna HB User
Fear of illness

When I find something wrong with me, my mind seems to automatically go to the worst possible scenario and stay there. It's at those times that the anxiety kicks in and it becomes hard to breathe regularly, impossible to relax and my thoughts about a particular illness become obsessive.

It's frustrating because I try to consciously, logically talk myself into not worrying about something and to wait and see. But, it fails, because my body will tell me the fear is still there. For example, I'll get muscle spasms in my back or migraine headaches.

I'm 53 now and there are some health issues that come along at this point in life. How can I deal with the anxiety that comes along with the health issues that I have to deal with?


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Old 09-13-2004, 12:10 PM   #2
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kingam HB User
Re: Fear of illness

i was just thinking about this today... im 27, and have always worried obsessively about my health... for the past week ive had these pains in my lower abdomen, so ive been going nuts... the anxiety makes me sick, which in turns makes me nervous...

and i thought "what are you going to do if something actually DOES happen???"

i think when faced with something real you would surprise yourself how tough you would be... its the shadey "what if, what if" thats completely scarey...

Old 09-13-2004, 02:46 PM   #3
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hry33 HB Userhry33 HB User
Re: Fear of illness

its called hypochondria and can be overcome by learning to relax and by accepting docs reassurance that your health is OK

Old 09-13-2004, 06:32 PM   #4
Join Date: May 2004
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51anna HB User
Re: Fear of illness

Thanks for the replies.

The thing is Hry, that drs often don't give straight-forward reassurance. Their responses are often vague and non-commital or will change from visit to visit. In fact, I think you have to put your faith in something more than your dr.

I am trying to relax and believe that I am just fine at this particular moment. Much of the time this works pretty well. This is something I'm working on and I appreciate your input.


Old 09-16-2004, 07:35 AM   #5
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Location: New Jersey
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Sunlover HB User
Re: Fear of illness

This is a great place to share our similar problems! Family just thinks I'm nuts and that I "do it to myself", but it is honesty a mental problem for me! And I know what you mean about the age. I'm almost 46 and when younger I'd always console myself with "I'm too young for that!" and I could relax a bit. But now I say I'm NOT too young! And every single thing I get is the REAL thing (before if I'd get constipated it was just "normal", now at 45 it "colon cancer"; no matter what I get it goes away, I laugh at myself, then the next thing comes along (could be in 2 weeks, 2 days, or overlapping the current problem!) and I then think, "AH HA! All those other things I was being stupid about, but now THIS IS IT!" My latest problem was tingling arms, so then I "had" blocked arteries and blood clots - it doesn't end! Currently I'm in a smooth sailing mode, but I know it won't last!

I'm sorry, I know you asked how you could deal with any medical problems that come along, but I'm in the same boat as you and all I can do is "support" you.

As far as what Hry said, if I go to a doctor, I am happy for about a day, then my mind starts racing again, - "Oh no, I forgot to mention such and such! That would have been the clue!" or "Suppose he wasn't listening close enough and didn't HEAR the tell tale symptom?" and on and on the mind races...

Old 09-17-2004, 10:11 AM   #6
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 303
tooanxious HB User
Re: Fear of illness

Yea my doc labeled me a hypochondriac which actually is sorta dangerous becuase I feel like the boy who cried wolf and now he might not listen at all. Im only 22 and feel like 93 at times. My parents told me that I might be eligble for the AARP discount with all the doctor appointments I had. Still its good to get checked out initially for your probelms that way you know for sure that is is anxiety.

Oh the definition for hypocondria actually amazed me. Its not that were making up the pyhsical sensations in our body which is what I though initially. We actually do have things going on in our bodies but we exaggerate and over react to them.

The best thing Ive foud is that if your condition doesnt get worse with time then chances are its nothing very serious. I mean how long can you have a heart attack for?

Also taking reassurance from my doctor works for about a day also. Then I think maybe he missed somethign or something new came up that he didnt catch. Also he might not have run all the tests that could have caught something. Lifes a *****!!

Last edited by tooanxious; 09-17-2004 at 10:15 AM.

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