Health Anxiety & Sertraline

Posted , 6 users are following.


I am so new to all of this so please bear with me. I am on day 4 of sertraline to help me cope with my health anxiety. It all started a couple of months ago when I found a lump in my breast... I did the complete wrong thing & google, google, google! Thankfully I can say that I got refered to the breast clinic & everything is all well. Since all of that I can’t manage to shake off the fact that I’m still worrying about it all. My mind keeps saying ‘what if the doctors have missed something?’ I started spirling out of control with it all, any pain, ache, lump, rash my mind went into overdue & self diagnosised myself. I’ve gone from thinking I have breast cancer to a brain tumour to anemia. You name it I can talk myself into having symptoms of it. I was back & forth to the doctors every other day sick with worry about new symptoms I was having when in all honesty it was anxiety (try telling me that)! 

I have & still am finding it very hard to accept that this is all anxiety & that I’m not riddled with a serious illness. My doctor has been amazing, she really listens to me & reasures me but she could see how this was starting to effect my day to day life so I decided to try sertraline. I have also self referred myself for therapy. My 1st few days have been horrendous! Nausea for me has been the absolute worst & completely lost my appetite. I managed a small meal today & I’m really focussed on keeping up my fluids. My sleep has been effected but not too much, I am able to cope with it. I do feel low & cry most days but that’s nothing new because I was doing that before starting medication. This forum has been a god send to me, I focus on all the positive stories to try & get me through each day. 

Does anyone else suffer from health anxiety? Or has anyone who has just started sertraline? How are you getting on? X

0 likes, 17 replies

17 Replies

  • Posted

    Hello April, I'll tell you a few things about me and see if it kind of matches your health anxiety. I always felt like I had some kind of sickness. In 2010 my husband had a heart attack at age on 53. At that same time i was going through menopause. I was having all 35 effects that you get with that. Then life decides to throw me another curve ball ,sister in law was found to have cancer. So let me tell you my mind was going a hundred and one directions. Needless to say i thought that i had everything that people around me was going through. My mother passed away in 2016 with unknown causes. From that way forward i was a complete mess with health anxiety. I decided to see my doctor and he prescribed zoloft. The best choice of my life. It does take 6 to 8 weeks to feel normal . You might have very high anxiety at first,so dont freak out, its just side affects. Sorry this was so long,but i just wanted you to understand where i was coming from. So hang in there, it does get better, but the beginning is rough. 😎

    • Posted

      Thank you laura, i figured if i can help one person by telling them my life story than i can sleep well. Im just trying to do my part in this wild and chaotic world.😎

    • Posted

      I agree with you completely.  When you suffer it yourself you know the power of some positive feedback from someone who is in the same position.  X 
    • Posted

      I am similar Brenda.  My dad had cancer and I looked after him for the last few years and was with him at the end and during that time my mum had a stroke and it was just a huge amount of time spent freaking out about the health of my parents and the emotional turmoil it takes is massive.  I became obsessed over every little thing, if I had a cold it was swine flu, if I had a cough it was lung cancer, that’s when I took sertraline for the first time and it worked for me too.   I stopped taking it last year but the anxiety has come back full force so here I am on the merry go round again and it’s been so hard getting started, week 6 for me and still an anxious mess but hopefully brighter days ahead.   Xx 
    • Posted

      Hi Brenda, thank you so much for your lovely reply. I’m sorry you’ve been through such heartache. What a strong woman you are. 

      Thank you for the reassurance, I woke up this morning very panicky & on edge but I need to keep reminding myself this is only day 5. X 

    • Posted

      Hi Laura, thank you for your reply. It’s so good to know that I’m not the only one who feels this way. Sometimes it feels like I am the only one in the world who is anxious about my health & I feel like I am going crazy! So pleased it worked for you last time & I hope it does this time too! X

  • Posted

    I am also a hypochondriac lol, i kinda think anyone with anxiety is to a degree. I started sertraline 6 weeks ago and it has been up and down. Last week or so has been rough im just laying in bed watching tv waiting for the storm to pass. 

    Before i started i could barely sleep, now im sleeping 8-10 hrs a night so ive seen some improvement forsure. 

    • Posted

      Did you increase your dose dylan? We are a pair aren’t we lol.   
    • Posted

      Yes. Giggity’s advice got to me. I was taking 50mg expecting it to be the right dose but i think i topped out on that dose and wasnt getting any more relief. 

      I started 75mg a few days ago and last night I was manic(in a good way) actually looking forward to the future! 

      I feel like crap today but im hoping that was a glimpse forward. 

      How have you been doing Laura? Are you still at 50mg? Ive decided im willing to go up to 150mg but I wont go any higher than that. Im hoping 100mg will be my dose but i will just have to see how it goes. 

      My mind is a little more open to the meds. I dont want to be on them but If i can get back to working I guess its alright. The side effects arent quite as bad as they were a few weeks ago but i still have a really hard time waking up. 

    • Posted

      Hi Dylan, thank you for your reply. So glad you’ve seen some improvement, I hope it continues to get better for you. It’s a scary process but sounds like you’re handling it amazingly! X
  • Posted

    Hi bee.  I think as Dylan says, most anxious folk have health anxiety to a degree I know I certainly have my moments.   I think the worst thing to do is google symptoms as we all know where that’s gonna end, but it’s easier said than done.  If you really need to google look on NHs sites for info and try to avoid just reading the random rubbish google churns out.   As Brenda says, these meds have helped her and hopefully in time they will help you too.  X 
  • Posted

    Hi Bee

    In April last year I suffered a bad cough for three weeks. I had a blood test and found my thyroid was slightly up. This sent me into a health anxiety tail spin. I stopped sleeping then thought I had a fatal sleep disorder which I found out about on google. I was then given dozens of tests only to find everything was normal. But I still couldnt sleep. My anxiety had reach catastrophic levels. Sine August last year I have been on meds Sertraline and Pregabalin. I also take some benzodiazepine. Health anxiety is awful. I am gradually dealing with my anxiety but it takes a long time.

    My advice is to stop the google searches and focus on taking your meds and staying positive. 

    Before my problems I was running every day and working full time and enjoying life. Because of the health anxiety, my life has been put on hold for a year. So stay positive and focus on interests and hobbies and try not to focus on every symptom you have. The nausea is common with Sertraline but should go soon.

    All the best


    • Posted

      Hi Lynn, thank you for your reply. You’re so right, health anxiety is awful. I knew it was getting out of control when for a whole week, I didn’t eat, I didn’t sleep, my neck & shoulder swelled due to muscle tension I was so uptight & making myself ill. 

      Thank you for the positivity, really appreciated x

  • Posted

    Hi there Bee,

    I too suffered from health anxiety 5 years ago and was put on Sertraline. I was so worried i was sick all the time. Cancer, brain damage, heart diseases, you name it. While Sertraline didn’t cure me, it helped me A LOT along side with cognitive behavioural therapy. A year after starting Sertraline and learning to trust my body i was “cured”. I have never looked back.

    I struggle with anxiety still. But not health anxiety anymore :-) so there is hope for you!

    As for side effects - this too shall pass

    Best of luck to you!

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