Really bad health anxiety!

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Hey guys,

I'm new to this forum and not too sure what it's all about or if it's going to help me..

I'm 23 years old and have been told by my doctor that I'm suffering from health anxiety (although I'm not convinced!)

It all started at the beginning if the year - I had a very random and very scary panic attack which came completely out of the blue! From then I've had the worst physical symptoms I've ever experienced.. Chest pain, numbness and tingling in my left arm, pain in my ribs, difficulty breathing sometimes, head aches, extreme tiredness (to the point where I feel like I'm going to fall asleep any second), dizziness, brain fog.. The list is endless!

I've been to my gp and also a&e numerous times and they've done some tests.. I had routine bloods, ECG, chest X-ray and the blood pressure etc.. All came back normal!

Even though I've been told I'm ok I just don't feel I am, I feel there is something seriously wrong with me (my heart worries me the most). Every doctor I have seen has told me that heart problems don't happen to girls of my age, so they've never done any tests on my heart. Since then I've been reading up on things and apparently it IS possible to have heart problems at my age! So what do I do? Do I take their word for it or keep going back until I get it tested? I feel like it's ruining my life - everyday I wake up thinking is this going to be the day I have a heart attack! The symptoms are so real and they are there 24/7!

Also my doctor put me on fluoxetine around 4 months ago - I have recently stopped taking it because it wasn't helping and I was getting awful side effects. Does anyone recommend any medication to help with how I am feeling?

I'm so so worried about my help! And no one seems to care. All I hear is anxiety, it's just anxiety, you have anxiety!!!!

Also I should add, I'm not at all overweight, I do smoke occasionally and have a pretty rubbish diet - I know the smoking and diet aren't going to help but I feel so rubbish that I cans stop eating rubbish!!!

Thank you very much for reading. Any help what so ever is very appreciated x

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  • Posted

    Firstly,  I know what your going through, I too suffer from health anxiety, it is a terrible aspect of anxiety.  As you are medically sound according to the docs, that doesn't mean u don't feel what u feel,it just means that you are in no physical danger,as is the case with most sufferers. It all boils down to the root anxiety- once that is under control, this with other symptoms will lessen or stop. Like you I refuse meds, the side effects I will not accept.  For me therapy works, it's s good place to get to the root of the problem. It can be a long road, so the soonest started the better! 
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  • Posted

    Hi Lucy,

    First of all you have my condolences,now take notice of what I say,I've suffered with anxiety for over fifty years and am now 64,how I got here I don't know,but if I'd listened to what my brain was telling me about how I'd had a stroke,and how I'd had two heart attacks,and had cancer then I would have been long gone by now don't you think?

    Anxiety can make you believe you have anything in the medical dictionary,and it often will,in itself it won't kill you,it is a chemical reaction in your brain that sends out crappy signals to your body to try and convince you that you are ill.

    I suggest you accept its presence but not to be fooled by its guile,and also to meditate on what has brought this all on,something will have done,then sort that out,maybe try for a more sedatory drug,if you get lucky,I am on 400mg Pregabilin,that's my saviour,but I do the natural things as well,exercise,meditate,take time out alone for a spell,I too smoke a bit,I eat more healthily,no alcohol hardly,but I still hurt at times,I always will,it's part of all this,come join all of us who suffer,and who still remain undefeated.

    Your heart is fine,so too your body,it's the mind that's at fault,just a loose wire,get in there and fix it,you may need some help with that as well.

    Hope you feel better,I feel quite good,you will too,just persevere and be patient,this could take awhile.

    Regards Malc

     

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    • Posted

      Hi Malcolm

      I have terrible anxiety at the moment and like you I am convinced that I've had a stroke, heart attacks, cancer!! The whole lot

      But today I am really suffering badly to the point where I think I'm dying, the pain is excruciating and has never been this bad, I'm truly scared that it's serious, the more I think about it the worse it's getting, I have 2 children here who need me, I'm so snappy and irritated with them and it's not their fault - I want this pain to go away but nothing gets rid of it - HELP!!!

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  • Posted

    You're not alone, I always thought I was a really robust person, pretty chilled out about things but my fingers started twitching last year and overnight I feel like my a part of me just changed and I've not got back to normal since. I pretty much convinced myself I had MS and despite doctors saying I didn't, I couldn't really accept that they were right because my gp only did blood tests and wouldn't refer me to get an MRI, obviously cause they thought it would be a waste of money cause I don't have ms.

    Anxiety created soooo many other symptoms that by the time I had accepted the twitching fingers I'd also started getting pins and needles, tingling, shaking and full blown anxiety attacks. It's been nearly a year and I feel a lot better in that instead of crying every day it now only reduces me to tears and panics every few months. I think it's because a lot of what I perceive are symptoms won't go away no matter how much I think I've relaxed and then that makes me more stressed and the vicious cycle just keeps going. I suspect the reality is that I'm now acutely aware of every sensation in my body and I feel like I've forgotten what's normal and just overreact to feeling anything.  It takes time but you can learn to cope with the anxiety and I feel like I can live with it now although I would give anything to not have overreacted to the twitching fingers in the first place.  Don't beat yourself up about it, it is a funny state of mind but it doesn't mean there's anything wrong with your heart. I've had every symptom you've described and my heart is still ticking. You'll be fine. I found it helpful to do online cbt courses and breathing exercises and I started exercising more to prove to myself I was as fit as anyone else. doing exercise will make you feel better and will help your heart in the long run! If you think seeking a therapist would help and you can afford to do it privately just do it. you don't want to spend your youth worrying yourself to despair.  when I was brave enough I decided to find out as much as I could about ms. Yes searching symptoms on the web is generally not a good idea but for some people I think educating yourself about your perceived illness can be a form of facing your fears.

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    • Posted

      I too thought i had ms.. well i had the dizzyness the twitching the numbness the funny joints. Shaking. Now ive had anxiety for years.. but as soo as you see someone with an illness or suffering for lets say a type of cancer.. someone with health anxiety will subconciously give themselves those symptoms to make them think they have it.. im not gonna lie.. i think ive got a bad heart it skips beats its fast my blood pressure is on the high side.. i think i have ms sometimes and other times its a tumor or nuerological .. im actually laughing as i write this because how silly does it sound!! But the symptoms i feel are real and that little doubt i have that little voice that says maybe its not anxiety is what keeps me in that viscous circle...
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    • Posted

      I'm going through severe health anxiety right now with all these symptoms. I'm just wondering what you mean by "funny joints " because I have some funny joints thing going on too
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  • Posted

    I've been having the same symptoms throughout this month. I had 4 EKGs which all came out fine. I had a full brown anxiety attack 2 months ago during a class, and i ended up being sent to ER. They checked my heart and gave me a cat scan on my brain, and all of them were good. A month later, i started to developed all these chest pain, numbness in left hand, muscle spam, and racing heart rate. I know that my heart is fine because i play basketball and i have no trouble breathing, but when I have a racing heart, my brain kind of lose it ability to think rationally. at that time, i just panic and thinking there is something wrong with my heart. I try not to think about it or just let go of the the idea of having heart problem when it comes to mind. i also couldnt focus in during when the chest pain came. now i am meeting with a psychotherapist and also taking low dose of meds. I've been learning to calm myself down when my heart races. i know this is gonna be a long fighting war, but i think we are all gonna be fine. This wont take us away from our love ones.  dont give up, keep me updated
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    • Posted

      Hey my name is jerry I'm 24. I too have experienced episodes of anxiety these past 6 months. I also got 2 ekgs, and other test everything comes out great. I sometimes get chest discomfort a day sharp pains throughout my body like on my arms, legs, chest even on my head. I automatically assume my heart is bad and I panic crazy. I don't want to die. Any tips you can help me relate with.
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    • Posted

      I too have super bad anxiety i feel like im gonna have heart trouble it sux plus i have acid reflux which sucks cause anxiety makes it 10 times worse so i feel your pain with heart stuff i get chest pain burning tingling in arms and legs burning in the arms
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    • Posted

      Why would you die? Health anxiety is just a manifestation of anxiety, it's not a condition on its own. Your health is no better or worse with health anxiety, see a Dr about general anxiety

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