Dealing with Health Anxiety

Being proactive about your health and taking good care of yourself are sensible things to do, but if you find yourself constantly worrying about your wellbeing, you may be experiencing health anxiety. Rather than having appropriate thoughts of your wellbeing, health anxiety can make you feel irrationally or obsessively worried about falling ill.

In some cases, people with health anxiety will misinterpret normal bodily sensations for signs that something is wrong. Often, they will consult physicians more frequently than the average person or spend an excessive amount of time online searching for conditions and illnesses that correlate to their perceived symptoms.

Critically, people with health anxiety continue to be preoccupied with their wellbeing after receiving a clean bill of health from a doctor or medical professional. While it’s always worth getting a second opinion if you’re not happy with the care you’ve received, repeated reassurance from healthcare practitioners should give you peace of mind that you’re not suffering from any undiagnosed conditions.

Health Anxiety and COVID-19

Dealing with health anxiety can be difficult at the best of times but the current outbreak of coronavirus is exacerbating people’s anxiety in many ways. In some cases, people with no previous history of health anxiety are reporting increased feelings of worry, panic and alarm due to COVID-19.

While it’s entirely normal to take preventative measures to stop the spread of the virus, if you’re experiencing excessive anxiety or even depression about the situation, you may find it helpful to seek help.

With the right intervention, health anxiety can be treated. Generally, people can learn how to manage the symptoms of health anxiety and keep excessive thoughts and behaviors at bay. While anxiety can worsen at times of stress, having effective coping strategies in place can help you to overcome any reemergence or exacerbation of your symptoms.

Getting a Health Anxiety Diagnosis

The first step to addressing health anxiety is to get a diagnosis from an appropriate medical professional. For some people, realizing that they have an issue with anxiety is something of a relief, as it means they can access the help they need. For others, being diagnosed with an anxiety can be traumatic in itself.

The Kentucky Counseling Center provides guidance for people who have been diagnosed with a mental health condition, as well as tips for sharing this information with people. If you want to learn more about coping with a diagnosis of anxiety, you can see the full article here for more details.

If you’ve been diagnosed with health anxiety, you’re one step closer to taking control of your symptoms and reducing your anxiety. By speaking with a therapist or counselor, for example, you can understand the cause of your worries and take steps to address them in a safe environment.

Excessively worrying about your wellbeing can be stressful, draining and overwhelming. By getting the support you need, you can minimize the impact health anxiety has on your day-to-day life and begin to look forward to a brighter future.

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