Health anxiety after pregnancy ruining our lives

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Hi all,

pretty much as the title says....I have developed quite extreme health anxiety after having my baby four months ago and I feel as though I am making my husband's life, and my own, a living hell. We are currently on holiday where, there days ago I had a sharp pain in my breast and I am convinced I have breast cancer. My Grandmother had this and since. I got the thought in my head. I have been self examinined almost continually to the point that I, and my family, have not left the house for three days and I have found lots of lumps and bumps that have only further convinced me. I have made an appointment for Thursday to see a private specialist when we get back. I am also having back pain near my epidural site which I am convinced is a cancer spread. Even as I write I can see how ridiculous this all is. A few weeks ago I had a melanoma scare and didn't leave the house for a week. It took three dermatologist reviews to convince me it was okay. I have seen my GP about my issues and I am due to start CBT next week but I am now worrying it won't be enough to help me. I am determined to get rid of this as I feel I am wasting so much precious time with my new family, but the irony is that this is all driven by a fear of leaving my baby to grow up without a Mummy. I cry every day about that thought and then I feel like such a bad person because I am healthy and there are people out there with genuinely life threatening conditions and I feel so pathetic. My husband is very supportive but doesn't seem to understand that I can't just 'talk myself out of it'. I don't know how to explain?

has anyone else got or conquered HA? Xx

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  • Posted

    Hi there I am the same ever since I had my son which now my son is 2 and a half I doctor told me I had Heath aniexty I was on tablets for a good year as I started when my son was 3 months old then I came off them as I was better but it's recently the last 2 months I have been very bad again aniexty has come back so bad.Symptoms dry mouth, dizzy, lightheaded, crying with worry all the time and horrendous feeling in my tummy.

    All the things your staying are the exact same as Heath aniexty. You won't have cancer at all. It's all in your mind. I have to have conisite reasuarrance from my partner family that am ok. It's so hard. I am not back on medication am just trying my best to try and get rid of this aniexty on my own but it's so hard. It sounds like u have a good family to help you. If u need any other help just write on here that's what we are all here for to help you. X

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  • Posted

    Hi just saw your post by accident really but had to reply. I remember the sharp pains from breast feeding and the darker freckles from all the hormones and the vomiting fear of leaving my baby alone in the world. Because I thought I was deffinately dying.  Your truly safe. But if it's not one thing it's another. Have you ever suffered anxiety before or is this the first time? Please I really want you to know how fine it's going to be 
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  • Posted

    Thanks both. I feel like I am truly living under a dark cloud that I can't escape. This is my first experience with anxiety, though I can now admit to myself it started in pregnancy. I was convinced throughout that I was going to lose my baby. I had a couple of miscarriages previously which I guess contributes to that but until I held my baby in my arms I didn't believe he would ever be there. I only breastfed for a month (we couldn't continue any longer as he wasn't gaining enough weight, I just couldn't give him what he needed) so my breast pain is unrelated but it has become an obsession now xx
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    • Posted

      CBT will deffinately help you. Agood thing you can do is get outside and give yourself a goal like saying hello to people with only white hair , black, brown or whatever . You do all the ordering of meals. You need distractions until CBT . I know it sounds strange but it can be really funny and really can help until CBT 
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  • Posted

    Hey mrs18053...

    Let me start with the good news...yes, you will conquer this and you will be perfectly happy.

    Now, the bad news, from my previous experience with all these "cancer scares"...I don't think you are done worrying. I think you will come up with other pains immediately you're going to think it's either cancer or a life threatening disease...

    And it's normal, you will overcome this...

    And you know how I did it? I would worry about a particular pain, thinking it's cancer, until the doc said otherwise, and the pain would go away.

    Months or days later, if the pain came back, I knew it wasn't cancer, because cancer doesn't leave and come back just like that. Months later, is still be healthy, no weight loss, nothing!

    You will learn in time that it's health anxiety which tricks our brains.

    But you will overcome this! 

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  • Posted

    I know all too well what you are going through. I am a mom of 3 and after each birth my anxiety worsened. I look at my youngest lil girl and almsot cry because I think I am going to die and leave her. I fear that with all my kids. I get so sick to my stomach. Lately I have been convincing myself I have breast C too and I cant tell what is a lump or what is fat!! I have no family history and I always get an annual physical which have always been good. I convinced myself in the spring that I had ovarian cancer cause of indegestion. I had an ultrasound and I THINK it came back good. Never got a call. I even had an emerg doc examine me after a nurse said she felt "something". The doc reassured me that it was nothing and she was 97% sure or higher that my ultrasound would be fine. So hopefully it was and nothing came back. ( I think the docs forgot to call me) or the docs are lying when they say I am ok. LIFE IS SOOO SCARY!! So many diseases everywhere you look. I always say my prayers and that helps. Just my own words to God to help me through this and keep my family and I healthy and safe. I got to bed at night and all thats on my mind is illness and death and leaving my kids. I hate it. Every little ache or pain I get, I immediately think its something serious. I am scared of the doctor and feel like puking everytime I have to go because I am scared she will give me bad news. I force myself to do my annual physicals. (I have to be responsible for my own health) but its hard and challenging. I am here if you ever want to talk. I go through this on a reg basis, I am only 35. I dont want to continue to live my life in fear. Talking about it with someone who knows what you are going through helps a lot. Feel better xx
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    • Posted

      You have described EVERYTHING I deal with and think about daily.

      Currently I had bloodwork done and I should get results monday or tuesday and I have cinvinced myself Im anemic because my legs are extremely fautiged, and the anemia ia just a symptom of some cancer. I have always had anxiety (health) but after baby #3 And I was given Norco in the hospital, I freaked out BP went sky high...I havent been the same since. My baby #3 is going to be 2 in August....I need my life back!!

      I fear having cancer and my vhildren and husband watching me die.

      I pray, and pray, and ask for prayers from my family and close friends but Im almost positive they are sick.of hearing it!

      I used to have a great "gut" feeling about things that was pretty correct, now I cant tell anxiety from true gut feelings!!

      Ive also heard that your mind can cause you to have cancer if you keep thinking it...All of its terrible!!

      I started zoloft 25mg a month ago, and im on day 2 of 50mg....We will see if that works.

      Im only 32 and I want to see my kids go up and grow old with my husband!!!

      Help!!

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  • Posted

    Just had to reply to your post because I could have wrote it myself. I have a 16 month old son and feel exactly the same. Health anxiety is ruining my life, effecting my relationship and making me feel physically and emotionally unwell. I have a pain in my breast sometimes ...so I have breast cancer, u have lower backache ....it's cervical cancer, I have a headache .....I've got a brain tumour - the list is endless!! I know how ridiculous it is. I lost my first baby at 20 weeks (had to deliver him and have a funeral etc). I blamed myself thinking my body had let him down and so in my second pregnancy I spent the whole 9 months obsessively worrying about every aspect of my health and my babys. Then when he was born I think I got PND. Anyway I could go on but I won't ....just know that you are not alone and I hope u feel better soon. My family seem to find my health anxiety a source of ridicule it's as if they think I WANT to feel this way. I just want to be a happy healthy mum not one whose forever thinking she's gonna die or crying when I look at my son imagining him growing up without a mum. 
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  • Posted

    Hello MRS 18053

    I need your help

    I can see that your post one year ago but please if u see this write to me

    i am 1 year postparum my babi is 13 month old and i am having the same problem everything u wrote

    scare of cancer scared of leaving my baby seeing her without me sad

    please help how did u manage this auful thing that is ruining my life

    i am opssesed with lyphoma and having all the symptoms sad

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    • Posted

      Hi maja16202,

      I have a 5 and a half month old and started suffering from postnatal health anxiety from about 1 month postpartum.

      I had never suffered from any type of anxiety until after the birth of my daughter. The root of my health anxiety stemmed from the below situation -

      I was induced at 40+1 weeks due to having high blood pressure and traces of protein in my urine - this came as a shock to me, as I'd had a complication free, healthy pregnancy up until that point. I was advised by my midwife at my 40 week antenatal appointment (my due date) that I would be staying at the hospital that night to be monitored and then induced the next morning. I was nervous, scared and excited at the same time, I wasn't expecting to be told I wouldn't be leaving the hospital that day.

      My birth was natural and complication free, however I felt like death after it. I was exhausted and could barely walk. I knew there was something wrong, I shouldn't have felt as sick as I did after childbirth.

      3 days after the birth, the midwife was visiting my daughter and I to see how we were doing, while she was there the right hand side of my face went tingly and drooped, as well as my right hand and fingers going numb, I felt like I was trying to get words out but my speech was slurring. I managed to tell the midwife what was happening and she noticed that my face had drooped - she took my blood pressure and sent me straight to the ER. She thought I was having a mini stroke.

      When I got to the ER I was admitted straight away and given a bed. I was with my Fiance and my daughter was with my parents who we were living with at the time - I knew she was in good hands, and I knew I was in the safest place for me, but I couldn't accept that at just 3 days postpartum I had been seperated from my baby. I was supposed to be at home with her, settling into a routine and bonding... Instead, we were in seperate places. I balled my eyes out that first day in the ER. My daughter couldn't come in as the ER is full of sick people and germs, we couldn't risk her contracting something at such a young, vulnerable age. Thankfully, that night I was moved up to the maternity ward to be monitored, as the doctors wanted me to be with my daughter, my Fiance also stayed with us.

      I spent 4 days in the maternity ward, having multiple blood tests done, as well as an MRI and CT scan on my brain. I was assured that I hadn't had a stroke. My brain was 'healthy' according to the neurologists who were looking after my case. They put it down to postnatal preeclampsia, my blood pressure had risen so high that I had a spasm in a part of my brain which controlled the right hand side of my body, thus causing dropping and tingling. I was discharged from the hospital with blood pressure medication to lower my blood pressure back to normal, and a referral to have an echocardiogram and transosophegal ultrasound... GREAT! My brain is healthy, and now they're checking my heart?! From that moment on I experienced health anxiety, which is related to my heart. I have had both tests done that the neurologist requested, and the cardiologist confirmed with me that I have no heart issues. I still feel as though I have a heart issue that has gone undiagnosed, and as soon as I feel a pain in my chest, arm or jaw, I find myself in a state of panic, which only increases my symptoms...

      I was prescribed Endep 10 by my doctor, a medication for my anxiety. I took it for a few weeks and found that it wasn't helping, so I stopped taking it and have started to see a psychologist. I have felt better since seeing her. Now, when I feel a pain, I tell myself that it's all in my head. I have had all the tests on my heart I could possibly have had, and my doctor and cardiologist have told me I have health anxiety. Also, I am a shocker when it comes to Googling symptoms. Do not do that. There are so many medical and non medical reasons you could be having particular symptoms. Google searching just makes your anxiety worse...

      I think it's completely normal to be aware of your health, especially when you have a child. You need to ensure you are as healthy as possible so that you're around to watch them grow up. I think that was and still is my biggest fear, my daughter growing up without a Mum, me not being there to watch her grow up.

      Good luck with everything, I hope you find a method that helps you.

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    • Posted

      This is strange because I never got it checked but 4 days after birth my right hand went nunb and tingly my face started doing it too and I believed stroke I never got it seen to but ended up in a&e due to having a big bleed the day later which I never mentioned the tingling ect because I was so worried about the bleed I had bloods and I did realise my blood pressure was raised 130/110 normally I have blood pressure of 70 ect (low) they never said it was high or anything though so I kept quiete wish I didn't now because I have chest and arm pain so bad dizziness ect I'm sure I'm having a heart attack or something Google became my best friend again and I'm in a state this morning with waking with chest and arm pain I keep getting big thuds too and standing up I feel so I'll after my second birth I ended up been readmitted and away from my baby I had to get emergency op so I guess my anxiety has stemmed from there I hope you feel better soon xx
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  • Posted

    I just came across this I know it was a year ago but I'm in exactly same position now near enough with anxiety since giving birth I give birth 11 days ago I'm currently sat here with chest and arm pain I keep crying constantly I feel pathetic I'm doing my family's heads in with my worries I believe I'm going to hemmorag I did with my second due to retained placenta so today I'm off for a scan to see if I have the again I'm really worried constantly I don't want to move I've got that bad I want to curl up my belly feels asif I'm going down bumps all the time and my chest it feels asif it's tensing up constantly I know I'm losing weight so this may be it but it's scary .

    I'm on co-amoxiclav and I feel it's killing me !

    I'm dizzy all the time I need to wash my hair but I keep getting thuds in my chest and I'm scared to wash my hair incase I collapse it's awful I also now have anxiety over my children and I don't want to leave them in feel like my whole body is giving up on me and I feel so alone at the moment it seems I'll never get better xx

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    • Posted

      I know your post is over 6 months old but I read it and honestly it made me feel less crazy that I'm not only going through the same thing. My daughter was born 19 months ago and I'm constantly worrying about my health. Chest and arm pain= heart attach, breast pain = breast cancer etc. I'm constantly going to dr and when I do get antibiotics my first thought is what if I'm allergic? I feel crazy and I feel guilty dot putting my fanily through this. I also started having panic attacks worrying about not being here to see my daughter grow up. Please tell me how to get through this.

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    • Posted

      Hi! I am in the exact same situation you are in. My baby is 7 months and is my 4th. I never experienced this worry about cancer with my others so I have convinced myself something is really wrong. I am exhausted from not sleeping well and worrying. I have had some tests done and they have all come back normal. I feel like a total crazy person! I constantly think about not seeing my kids grow up. It's such a sad place to be.

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  • Posted

    Hello all. I'm 41 years old my baby is 15 months old. I suffered from horrible anxiety the whole time I was pregnant scared that I was going to lose the baby because I wasn't able to get pregnant for 20 years so I thought how could this be possible that I'm pregnant and I'm going to carry a baby. So after the baby was born I had severe anxiety and depression they put me on Zoloft which only made anxiety worse and almost caused me to be suicidal. Eventually I ended up an inpatient treatment where they put me on Paxil and Remeron to sleep. After about 9 to 10 months I started to wean myself off the paxil and it was pure hell. I had a relapse of anxiety about a month after stopping the paxil, in which I heard was normal Paxil withdrawal. So now again I'm having terrible health anxiety my bones hurt so bad so I convinced myself that I have bone cancer or osteoporosis or some horrible disease and I'm going to leave my baby behind. It has taken away the joy of my life it has taken away the ability to have fun with my baby I just feel so lost so old so sad and so alone. I just want to be happy again someone please tell me it gets better Desperately Seeking answers thank you

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    • Posted

      Also I have chest pain all the time with jaw and neck pain always on left side so I immediately think I'm having a heart attack which if I was going to have when I probably had one by now. But I still obsess about it constantly and I do Google stuff which makes it 10 times worse I hope that I found the right place to get support meet new friends there like me I just want to be happy again thank you for listening or reading rather. Oh and just before I forget ever since I had my daughter I've had horrible stomach issues gastrointestinal issues had my gallbladder removed just terrible terrible gastro issues as anyone else ever experience this?

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