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    Old 02-11-2007, 03:35 PM   #1
    Kristen26
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    My heart/health anxiety.....

    I have developed health anxiety from my regular anxiety and panic disorder. When I get extremely anxious or have a panic attack, I get all sorts of body symptoms, including palpitations and skipped/missed feeling beats (those who have had them understand). These heart sensations cause me to dwell on my heart and make everything worse. Sometimes I get the weird beats/sensations out of the blue, but mostly when I am anxious. I have been checked out and am fine, I know all about PVC's, PAC's, and all that fun stuff, BUT still I have this horrible concern about my heart. Does anyone else have this type of concern, or of another body part/organ?? Thanks, this board helps me feel alot better!
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    Old 02-11-2007, 06:23 PM   #2
    Trixibel
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    Smile Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    YEESSSSSSS!!!!!!!!

    i have been paranoid about my heart for the last 18 years. I'm 38 now. Heart disease runs in my family so I have a fairly just cause, but yes. I know all about the skipped beats. I had my first ECG when I was twenty one because I was convinced I was going to die in the night. I didn't recognise my problems as panic disorder. The doctor who got me the ECG told me to see a psychologist and I was outraged!!! I thought 'there's nothing wrong with me!' but there so was!!

    Every little symptom I get - every pain - even in my stomach - I immediately think must be heart-related. I wasn't so bad when I was on zoloft, but now that I'm off it, it's coming back a bit. The last doctor I saw told me to go for a stress test to put my mind at ease but i'm too scared they'll find something. I'm also too scared to exercise hard just in case I have a heart attack. See how bad I am??

    But having said that, I'm not nearly as bad now as I was eighteen years ago and I don't have panic attacks any more. I think the difference is that back then I wasn't eating properly. I never ate breakfast and only ate apples for lunch (I know, weird, huh?) and too much chocolate and I smoked and drank too much coffee so no wonder my heart was doing strange things.

    So...pay attention to your nutrition. Maybe take a good vitamin B supplement or a multivitamin, if you're not already. All the vitamin Bs are good for maintaining 'normal heart rhythms'. So is magnesium - a deficiency can cause 'irregular heartbeat'. And I think potassium as well is good for keeping the heartbeat normal. bananas are a good source of potassium, as are fruits, seeds and wholegrains.
    good luck.

     
    Old 02-11-2007, 06:40 PM   #3
    SNC727
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    Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    I am new to these boards and have been researching this same issue the last week. For the last 8 days my heart has been beating very "hard" but not fast. Have been to the urgent care and my general doctor - both have said I'm fine but think I have an anxiety problem (never diagnosed with it before).

    Anyway - I am seeing a cardiologist in a few weeks but have a phone consultation and they said that ESPECIALLY for women, we should be taking 500 mg magnesium a day and at least 1000 mg of calcium. Apparently magnesium helps with heart rhythm as well.

     
    Old 02-11-2007, 10:16 PM   #4
    justme231
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    Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    Hi There!

    Funny, but I recently posted on a different board for a similar thing.

    I have had panic/anxiety disorder for many years, and have run the gammet in the "symptom" department. In my younger years, the symptoms were much more noticable and, for lack of better terms, describable. I am now 37, and either I have adapted to the lifestyle (paranoia), or I mask it better. Either way, my situation is far less noticable to others than when I was younger.

    I, too, have a history of heart disorders in my family. Lately, my paranoia has been centered around heart flutters. Ther were constant and SO noticable for weeks straight. I was certain it was going to be the death of me. Well, let's just say I did some inner searching recently, and I realized the circumstances leading up to the heart flutters were odd. I have had so much going on within the past 18 months with work, moving to a new location, change in home living situations (in law moved in)....and the final was my husband had spinal surgery. I think mentally I just couldnt relax...and the body MUST rid itself of tension....so it manifests itself physically.

    I had to be "the rock" for so many people all at once. Now, as I read your post I realized something....the heart thing has disappeared. I haven't felt it in about two weeks.....since some of the pressure on me finally let up.

    This has been a constant occurance in my life....different circumstances.....different body responses. I have been medically treated for the panic/anxiety, but understanding the pattern of the anxiety is (for me) the biggest weapon I have found in combating the disorder.

    I feel for you, as I do for many others who's post I have been reading as of late. I am not an expert, but a sufferer just like you. My only solid advice is to read up on the panic/anxiety issue, and keep on posting on reputable, well respected boards such as this one.

    Last edited by justme231; 02-11-2007 at 10:18 PM.

     
    Old 02-12-2007, 08:15 AM   #5
    jrebecc
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    Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    I have the exact same problem. I have an anxiety disorder and it manifests itself through my heart mostly. Its either my heart or my digestive system. I get the palps and the racing heart all the time and I hate it sooo much!! I am not on any meds, but I am seeing a therapist now, which helps. I have been to the doc and have been told that my heart is ok, but I am still not convinced! Some days I dont mind the skips, other days they stop me in my tracks and I fear for my life. I knwo anxiety makes them worse, but some days I just do not get why they appear. I am afraid to get my heart rate up now because I hate feeling it pound in my chest. It is so awful! I think I am so sensitized to everything my heart does now...not a good thing. Anxiety is terrible, especially health anxiety! I can make any ache/pain I get life threatening if I let myself!
    I wish you luck and this is a great place for support!

     
    Old 02-12-2007, 09:26 AM   #6
    confused32
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    Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    My anxiety is all based around my heart. My worrying about my heart causes all my anxiety. My father had many heart problems and now im convienced i will do the same. I have been to many doctors that all assure me my heart is fine other than i do have MVP. Any ache or pain i get automatically means its my heart. Right now i have a bad case of the flu and of course i worried at first it was signs of a heart attack. There is not one day that goes by that i do not worry about my heart. I have always been like this because of the palps i get but back in March i had a really bad panic attack due to pains in my left arm and ever since then i can not let this worry go. I fear that i am stressing myself so much that if my heart wasnt bad to start with it will be due to all the stress im putting on myself worrying about this. I had considered having a cardic cath, my doctor finally agreed to do one, but i then chickened out of it. I have had every test done and they all show my heart to be fine. Its just you read so much about people that get the story that their heart is fine, to then turn around and have a heart attack shortly after being told to not worry. I worry will i know if i am having a heart attack or is it just the normal annoying symptoms i deal with everyday. I hate living my life like this, its really taking a toll on me. I definatly know how you feel and i am in the same boat. I have tried anxiety classes but they really did me no good. I do take loranzapan as needed to help calm me down when i start to freak out over some pain im having, it seems to help some. It is good to know that im not alone in this and that people can understand what i feel, some of my family can not. Hang in there and just keep living life the best you can, thats all any of us can do.

     
    Old 02-12-2007, 03:01 PM   #7
    edz1961
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    Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    I can relate to you all. No matter what the heart is the center of my attention always. I excercise, I have 12.5% body fat, muscular and lean. I jog, lift free weights and despite all the tests and doctor visits turning out OKAY, I keep worrying what if the missed something

    Bottom line, we are all afraid of death and most probably we will all live a long life perhaps longer than many normal people. The sad thing is that we live our lives in fear and therefore we ruin the quality of our lives.

    Last edited by moderator2; 02-12-2007 at 03:26 PM. Reason: Please do not post websites except as described in the posting rules section titled "How to share information".

     
    Old 02-12-2007, 04:12 PM   #8
    Trixibel
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    Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    Hey confused32, your life is my life. Every little symptom - even a sore throat - (because a friend of ours had a sore throat before a heart attack) - means impending heart trouble. My father also has had problems, and so did his father. It's a nightmare, isn't it?

    One thing i've heard is that having vitamin C every day is very good for your arteries. 500 mg a day. It helps keep them healthy. So I try to do that. The other thing I do is take fish oil because that's supposed to be good for cholesterol and blood pressure. I also eat two kiwi fruits a day because apparently two kiwi fruits have the same blood-thinning properties as taking an aspirin. (You might not have kiwi fruits - the juice of 4 lemons is just as good and a good liver cleanser too!) Take B vitamins too. Patrick Holford says there is a big connection between blood levels of homocysteine and heart problems and the way to keep homocysteine levels down is to take good vitamin B supplements. If you want to know more read his books, 'Optimum Nutrition for the Mind' and the Optimum Nutrition Bible.

    I'm 38 and I've been worrying about this since I was 20 and it's given me many, many panic attacks.

     
    Old 02-12-2007, 10:02 PM   #9
    justme231
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    Re: My heart/health anxiety.....

    Hi Everyone.

    I have read all of your posts, and as I stated in my original response...I am not an expert, just a sufferer like all of you.

    What I do know is that anxiety and stress can cause major disfunction throughout your whole system. This is NOT something that we (as sufferers of panic/anxiety disorder) can mentally control. It almost becomes an autonomic nervous systom response to stress, and can manifest itself in many forms as well as at unpredictable times. My panic symptoms seem to come when there is no apparant stress. I have learned through much reading and advice that this is very normal, as your body responds when it feels "safe" to do so. This can be days, weeks or even months after your original "stressors" occured.

    As I said before, I have run the gammet in the symptom department. I have gone from the "random" doctors visits, to being rushed to the ER with very real symptoms of serious medical problems. For me, anytime a friend/family member has a medical situation, I (unconsciously) mentally log the symptoms and in some way, shape or form eventually develop some form of them. It really sucks. I can't control it, and yeah, many people think it's stupid and ridiculous. My friends and family make fun of me all of the time. Sometimes I want to bonk them on the head and ask... "do you really think I like feeling this way ALL of the time?" They don't mean to be cruel, they just don't get it. Who would want to feel like this every day?

    I am not a huge promoter of drugs, but I will say that there are a few out there that have really helped control my issues. I like to have control to whatever extent I can, so things I don't have to take daily are my preference, though I have had great sucess with daily (antidepressant) meds. Right now, because I am trying to get pregnant, some (daily) drugs are out for me. Personally, boards like this have been more helpful than any drug I have tried. Once I realized that I was NOT alone in this, I really gained confidence in myself, as well as the doctors who have told me all along that I am OK. It is very difficult to believe them, regardless of whatever tests are performed....because people like us are paraoid by nature. Yes, sometimes they (Docs) are wrong. But for the most part, it's in their best interest to be as thorough as they deem appropriate.

    When you suffer from anxiety and panic, it kind of goes along with the territory to be distrustful. For me, the internet can be my worst enemy, or my best advasary....depending on how I use it. Doing general searches on the internet regarding conditions is a HUGE problem for me. That's why I now stick to this board only for advice and support. I am so grateful to all of you, and hopefull that I can help others as well.

    I will end this very long post by saying that you (reading this) are NOT crazy, you are NOT alone and please keep on reading up on the issues of panic/anxiety disorder, just be cautious of the sources. I have one great book that I read called "Don't Panic", but I can't recall the author's name. Great read, and I will try to find the author and post it. This site is a Godsend for me as well, and more helpful than I can express. Good luck to all and thanks to the creators of this site.

    Last edited by justme231; 02-12-2007 at 10:05 PM.

     
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