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  1. Jremtx


    Hello everyone, just came back from my pcp appointment and let me tell y’all. Note: IVE BEEN FEELING ALOT BETTER ON MY OWN THINKING RATIONALLY, TRUST ME IVE BEEN THERE WHERE I FELT LIKE I COULDNT USE MY HANDS, LEGS. FELT LIKE I COULDNT WALK OR DRIVE, EVEN TEXT. LOST ALMOST 20 POUNDS DUE TO THIS HA. IVE ONLY GOTTEN 30 HOURS OF SLEEP IN A MONTH, SEEN MULTIPLE DOCTORS. I WAS 140, NOW IM 160 I FEEL LIKE I OVER SLEEP NOW HAHA AND ITS GETTING BETTER EVERYDAY. She was getting mad at me because I wasn’t focusing on the things I need to focus on haha. (I go to a university hospital and If you read my past post I’ve seen a lot of pcp just wasn’t mine cause she was on medical leave but she knows about my information since it was noted” Well to sum it up, she knows that I’ve been going through many ALS fear for some months now and she knows about my fasciculation's in my left calve (my hotspot) and all over. she said, “you don’t have ALS, we don’t look for twitching in ALS, we look for real clinical weakness.” She also said “you’re 25 years old, your muscles are probably telling you... hey I need to move.” I told her I haven’t been exercising or anything at all just labor work. She also explained, if you’re working out and you can barely curl a 5 pound weight come see me. She then asked me if I wanted to see a neurologist and I was kinda caught off guard, I told her “I do but I feel like I’ll be feeding into my anxiety. You don’t think i have ALS right?” She looked at me like I was crazy cause she just explained everything about ALS to me haha she said “NO.” she said “well I’m going to put the referral in and it takes months to see one anyways so if you feel like you don’t need to then don’t.” its funny because the doctor was telling me I should be worried more about diabetes and heart diseases because of my family. My parents also see my pcp so she’s very familiar with my family and she knows that diabetes runs in my family. So now she wants me to eat more healthier and work out more. i actually have an appointment with a neurologist on Monday cause someone canceled, I was kinda happy. so next Monday I have an appointment with a neurologist and I’ll keep y’all updated but just wanted to share my follow up.
  2. Hi guys, I'm new to the forum but have been observing fro some time. I'm 25 years old and have been struggling with health anxiety seriously for nearly 2 years. Around 2 years ago I had my first big health anxiety scare over ALS due to perceived weakness and muscle twitching. After numerous trips to the doctors, neurologists and therapists I finally got my life back in order after I realized that it was all caused by anxiety. Fast forward to just before Christmas and health anxiety struck again with a lymph node worry (all fine), stomach cancer worry (also all fine) and now I'm stressing about ALS once again. I was in my car the other day and I tried to whistle along to a song and it didn't come out as strongly as normal, my brain went into full panic mode about bulbar onset als. (I know it sound ridiculous). Since then I've been super paranoid about the way I am talking and the way I swallow food. I'm finding it hard to swallow food but I'm hoping it is just an anxiety symptom that is causing my throat to close up. I get myself so worked up that I can't sleep more than about 3-4 hours a night and I throw up nearly every morning because of how worked up I have made myself. The stupid thing is, currently I can still whistle, my voice isn't slurred and I think my swallowing is normal (with the exception of the anxiety). I'm probably being ridiculous but I can't help it and all my family and friends are getting fed up with my worries all the time. I've gone back on Citalopram 20mg and have signed up for more CBT so we'll see how it goes. I just hate health anxiety so much and I needed a bit of a rant and some reassurance.
  3. Hello, if anyone is interested, I have written a book about health anxiety. You can get it on the Kindle edition or as a paperback. Hope it can help some people. It is free on Kindle Unlimited (click on the author name on Amazon to see the paperback etc) Mods please move to appropriate forum if this is not the right place
  4. Hi everyone, I am having a really rough month. Let me start out by saying that I have a really bad health anxiety/OCD condition that I have been on and off dealing with for the last 3 years. I'm currently in veterinary school and my anxiety levels lately have been going through the roof. This last month in particular has been rough as I have not been sleeping well, I have been dealing with my cat that had a horrible illness and had to get multiple procedures, surgeries, biopsies, a feeding tube placed, etc. It was right in the middle of midterms and it was incredibly stressful running around taking him in and out of the hospital. I was incredibly worried for him and freaking out it was rabies. I went to the hospital to get the rabies shots. After a while I was convinced it was ok and I stopped worrying about it. After all the stress of this, I started to develop a finger twitch in my right index finger. it happens all throughout the day both at rest but also when im using my computer or after I perform an action and then rest. It's been causing me a lot of grief over the last week and I saw 2 primary care doctors about it. Both of which refused to refer me to a neurologist and told me it was most likely from stress or anxiety. right and sometimes left arm. IDK if those are just from being more anxious and hyper-vigilant. Other things have started happening like pin and needle feeligs in my left foot and percieved weakness in my I've been worried sick about ALS, PD or MS. 6 months ago I was taking Accutane and around finals time I had parasthesia in my left arm. It freaked me out so I went to the hospital numerous times to get cervical and brain MRIs...they found nothing. I also got tested for Lymes, had general panels done at the hospital and had my thyroid levels checked (all 6 months ago)...nothing wrong. It was dismissed as anxiety or problems from the Accutane, which I discontinued and started feeling better. Im worried the paresthesia in the left arm and the finger twitching in the right index finger are related and indicitave of a neurodegenerative disease. I used to be treated for anxiety and I was taking meds. I went cold turkey and stopped taking them out of laziness about a month and a half ago. Dumb, dumb decision I know, but my anxiety has gotten out of control since then. I started seeing a new therapist and I am getting back on my medication for good. I don't know what to do. Does this sound like a neuro disorder or just anxiety? I know people here arent doctors, but have people experienced this? Just twitching in ONE finger due to anxiety???? I guess there is the pins and needles feeling in my left foot, but I'm just freaking out and I cannot think about anything else. Is it likely to just be anxiety? Should I just trust my primary care doctors and attribute it to stress??? Any comments, advice or help would be much appreciated. Im having a hard time functioning and I'm so close to going to the ER to just ask for more tests. Thanks so much all, Sorry for the rant.
  5. I am 22 years old, and the past couple years for me have been some of the most difficult times of my life, from a mental standpoint. Health anxiety is something that has affected my sister, and I never understood her pain, until recently I have realized I am going through the same thing. These past 2 years have been extremely difficult, and it actually caused me to quit a very good job and move back to my hometown, which was something I never thought I would do. The more frequent it is becoming, the worse the incidents are. Lately, the past 3 months to be exact, I have completely convinced myself that I have ALS. I started working 68 hour weeks on nights, and started twitching in my eyes constantly. I tried to ignore it to the best of my ability, but never could completely block it out. Then one night, I started to twitch right above the knee on both legs, along with a feeling that I just ran a mile. Dr. Google had come up with ALS, and of course that is what I set my mind on. The constant twitching and weakness went away, but my worry of ALS just got worse. Now, I have random twitches all over my body, and a perceived weakness in both shoulders and my right hand. I went to the doctor, and he referred me to a nuerologist, but the appointment is 3 months away. When I can keep occupied, the twitching and perceived weakness seems to go away. But once it crosses my mind, it’s there again. I can’t help myself from reading every google article that comes up about ALS, as well as patient stories. It’s getting way out of control, and it is affecting my social, work, and everyday activities. Any help, comments, tips, and just a conversation would be greatly appreciated. Thank you all.
  6. It seems as though my anxiety has now jumped from ALS or MS to being HIV positive. I went through a lot of the threads where others have had this worry and it has provided me some comfort that I am not the only one who has felt this way before. I'm trying really hard to not have a full blown panic attack right now. Basically, at the beginning of May, I was with one guy. I did not have sex with him (nor have I had sex before), but instead other ~things~ were done. I will not get into details because there could be young people reading these threads. Here are the good things: From May until right now I haven't gotten sick (not even a cold), I haven't had dramatic weight loss, and I do not run a fever, I haven't had skin rashes, my body hasn't ached all over, and while I do love my naps...I don't recall ever feeling lethargic even after a full day of activity. The bad things: the swollen lump fear has now come back to haunt me, and now instead of attaching this thought to lymphoma, I'm attaching it to HIV. My doctor also told me my tonsils felt enlarged 2 weeks ago. I had a bad UTI and yeast infection about 2 weeks after my time with him, but that was taken care of and I don't believe I've had one since (I blamed it on the scented pads I used for monthly cycle...never again!!!!). I also see that oral thrush is a thing, and now I'm questioning if my tongue looks white or not. I've also had this semi dry cough, that has improved, but is still lingering (I'm not sick though). Now I know a simple solution is to get tested, but I don't even want to because of how fearful I am. I'm not sure if I trust drugstore kits either. I also am not sure how to get tested without my family knowing. What I also know is that so much time has passed (nearly 8 months), and I think that can count for something. But I also know in some cases HIV can remained undetected for years. The guy I was with doesn't seem like the type to be in a situation where he would be exposed to this virus and certainly he is all about his health (he lifts weights and is on some kind of muscle journey lol). And yes I know that looks don't determine someone's HIV status. I feel very stupid writing this post but maybe someone will verbally slap some sense into me and tell me I'm fine
  7. While I'm still battling my own health anxiety demons, these are some things that I've done that have helped me calm down during a full blown attack. It may not be much but maybe this can be a reminder to those who need it. 1) Walk. Take a very long walk. Listen to some calming music and just walk. (Obviously mind your surroundings) 2) Meditate. There are some good meditation videos on youtube, even 10 minute ones, that talk you through your thoughts and tell you to let them go. 3) With your eyes closed, lie on your back with your knees bent and breathe deeply. Or sit in a comfortable position. While doing this, pick out a few sounds you can hear and just listen. This will help ground you to reality. 4) Read a happy book. I find it helpful when I immerse myself into someone else's happy story so I can forget about my fears for a while. This can be done with movies or TV shows. 5) Write it down. I've never kept a journal before, but I just started. I write exactly what I'm thinking and exactly how I feel about it. At the end of every journal, I write "I AM OKAY" in large font. Writing down your thoughts can help you put it into words if you feel like your mind is all jumbled up. Even if you think you sound awkward, you let the feelings out and that's what matters. It's also a great way to check your habits. 6) Take a shower, pamper yourself, and drink some chamomile tea. Buy a lavender scent diffuser or candle for your room. 7) The obvious one: GET OFF THE INTERNET. This one is something I'm still trying to master, because it's extremely hard. Google seems like a lifeline when it comes to health anxiety. You think googling is going to relieve your mind but it's not, it just makes it worse. Everything can be a fatal disease thanks to Google. I used to actually get mad when I saw websites telling you to put the phone down because I convinced myself that putting your phone down doesn't make the problem go away. When I first was able to put my phone down, I learned that the problem doesn't go away BUT I don't create new ones. Creating new ones pumps your mind even more. Eventually the problem you currently have will seem smaller than before when you don't Google things. Just give it time. I hope this will help even just ONE person, whoever it may be. These may seem so obvious but sometimes people need to be reminded to do the simple things. I was one of those people just a few days ago.
  8. I'm a 20 year old college student, and I think I can safely diagnose myself with health related anxiety. I was always one to worry about my physical health, and I'd always go to the doctor to put myself at ease. I handled it well before, but recently a friend my age died of cancer and it set off the ticking time bomb within me. First, I had an infected cyst under my arm. I convinced myself I had undiagnosed lymphoma. I went to 3 doctors, and they all told me that it was a minor infection. For some reason, I didn't believe them. I didn't believe them even though I was put on antibiotics and the infection and lump went away under my arm. On top of not believing them, I constantly check the internet and check my temperature for that short relieved assurance that I'm fine. Second, I have a minor cough that's accompanied by a tickle in my throat. I then convinced myself I had lung cancer or some sort of fatal disease in my heart or lungs. Went to the doctor and they told me I had a bunch of mucus in the back of my throat and it was a post nasal drip. Third, I started having back pain. Once again, searching the internet made me believe I had lung cancer or failing kidneys. In the back of my mind I knew it was from bad posture, but my body told me it was cancer. Now this week, I'm studying the nervous system and we covered several motor disorders. These include ALS, Parkinson's, Huntington's, and others. Now I've developed weakness in my legs and arms (they feel like jelly), and my hands are shaking a tiny bit. I have been constantly in a state of anxiety since the beginning of November, and this is most likely from anxiety, but I am CONVINCED I have ALS. I can hold a pen just fine, I'm not tripping over my feet, I was able to lift a 25 pound kettlebell in each individual hand, and I walked up and down 6 flight of stairs 3 times yesterday. My legs feel better, and my hands feel better, but are still shaky. Yet here I am. Because I am in such a state of anxiousness all day every day, I haven't been able to eat or study. I am crying nearly every other day. These are the thoughts that run through my mind as soon as I wake up in the morning up until I go to bed. I have avoided hearing or reading the words cancer, death, disease, etc. Every time I hear it, I go into panic mode and I nearly vomit. I'm even bothering my parents because I'm constantly calling them to ask for reassurance that I'm not fatally ill. I'm seeing someone about this when I come home from school, but I am desperate for medication that can help me be in a calmer state so I can deal with my anxiety better. I don't know how this works. Has anyone ever started feeling symptoms when they hear about a new disease? How have you guys coped with this? My goal in life is to work as a physical therapist in a hospital with patients with spinal cord injuries, amputated limbs, and other disabling problems. I can't do that if I can barely deal with my own health.
  9. Hi everyone, I’m new here. I’m just looking for advice and reassurance. I’m an 18 year old healthy female. Recently (over the past month and a half or so) I’ve noticed some random, unexplained bruising, mostly on my legs. The first time around, which would have been sometime in July, I noticed small nickel-sized green bruises on my left thigh. There were three of them and they were almost in a perfectly straight line. I also noticed a couple on my other thigh, about the same size and same color as well. And another, which my mom pointed out, on the inner part of my upper right arm, which was pretty massive and alarming to me. I started becoming increasingly anxious over this (I am not clinically diagnosed with anxiety; I haven’t ever had a proper assessment done, so I am simply going off of my own feelings) and started having dizzy spells and overall general feelings of being “unwell.” It got so severe that I had to call out of work three days in a row because I couldn’t stand longer than 20 minutes without needing a break because I was so lightheaded. I suspected anemia because of all of this and had a CBC done which came back normal, albeit my platelet count was a little high, as well as my calcium levels, but I was assured that it was nothing to be concerned about. After that ordeal I was able to get a grip and pretty much entirely forgot about the situation. I started taking a daily women’s multivitamin which made me feel significantly better, so I began to improve. However, this past Sunday (September 9th) I worked what we call “floor set” at work, meaning we completely change the layout of the sales floor, which includes changing wall setups, moving shelves, climbing ladders, lifting mannequins, etc. The main thing I was doing during that floor set change was climbing up and down ladders. After that shift which was around 5 and a half hours, later that night, I noticed I had some pretty excessive bruising on my shins, some traveling to my knee and thigh on my right leg. I have about 6 small brown/greenish bruises on my left shin, as well as around 10 bruises on my right leg, mainly focused on my shin but one on my knee and one on my lower thigh. Around three of the bruises on my right shin are larger than the rest, and it’s beginning to worry me. I constantly check my body anytime I bump into something as I’m becoming increasingly more anxious about bruising so easily. My mind keeps steering in the direction of Leukemia, even though part of me knows that I would KNOW if I had it. Am I simply overreacting or should I visit the doctor again over these? I’m not experiencing any severe fatigue, night sweats, fevers, etc. but I have quite a few physical symptoms of anxiety that aren’t helping me at all. As far as I know, easy bruising doesn’t run in my family, but I am extremely fair-skinned, so maybe that has something to do with it? This is really starting to take a toll on me and I would just like a peace of mind. It’s been very hard to function to the best of my ability at work because my mind keeps falling back into the big “C” spiral. It’s hard to relax when I can’t stop thinking about this. I have attached an image of the bruises on my legs for reference. Not all of the bruises are visible due to the flash washing my skin out, but the majority of them can be seen. I greatly, greatly appreciate any kind of reassurance anyone can give me.
  10. LTE


    I'm not sure where to begin. I am here because I am hoping for some healhty way of dealing with my consistent fears of falling ill. Every little itch, bump, pain means to me that I am surely dying. I know I am wrong--and I am a little bit jealous of others who seem to be able to shrug off smaller problems. I know that I do have some illnesses (hashimoto's thyroiditis, IIH), but I am still in my 20s and am tired of living in fear of dying. My husband is gone at school right now, so I am spending more time alone at night when my mind likes to harass me. I know I have had a number of tests done, usually negative because I was afraid of some illness. There are always symptoms of some kind, but I struggle with taking a rational approach. I just wish the stress was gone. My dad died unexpectedly about a year ago from an illness that seemed to come out of nowhere, and I can feel my fears of health issues beginning to get out of hand. I am so very afraid I will die like he did. Though I have always been afraid of getting myself poisoned or falling ill with some new disease I have just learned about, I think I am having a harder time making wise medical choices since his death. I have definitely overused their services--and I am tired of having health problems weigh on my mind.
  11. Hi everyone, It's me AGAAAAIN. I've already posted so much in these past few months but it really helps to read your answers. Because my constant anxiety is not getting any better my therapist recommended antidepressants in combination with therapy. I started this medication (paroxetine) 1.5 week ago but was having a lot of side effects. I was warned that my anxiety might increase in the first few weeks, but I was getting extreme panic attacks almost 24/7, didn't sleep at all for five nights in a row and got extremely depressed and even s*****al in the space of one week. My therapist didn't think this was normal, signed me up for crisis + arranged for me to meet a psychiatrist, who found out that the dose of the medication -prescribed by my GP- was too high and told me to stop taking them. The thing that started the series of panic attacks was that I was having a lot of chest pains 2 days after starting the medication. This led to a panic attack in the car. I've had panic attacks before, but nothing like this one. After that it was just panic attack after panic attack (day and night), and the chest pains never went away. It was seriously the worst time of my life. It's now been four days after I quit the paroxetine and I've been seeing my therapist and the psychiatrist every day. They are both telling me that there is nothing physically wrong with me and that this is all caused by the medication because the dose was just too high, so now it is going to take some time to stabilize. They have prescribed me with alprazolam and lorazapam, which helps a bit but the chest pains are still there. I've also had an ECG two days ago + two doctors have listened to my heart, and everything was fine. I just saw my psychiatrist today and told her I was doing a bit better (I felt like I was) but on my way home I started freaking out again because I won't have another appointment until wednesday. I have now fully convinced myself again that I really do have a heart disease and that I am going to die soon. I don't believe the results of the ECG anymore because I've read that not all heart disease shows up on an ECG and that is why it is better to do a stress test -which I haven't had-. Also, the ECG was only 9 seconds and at the time it was taken I did not have any chest pains, which is why I am scared that they've missed something. The chest pains, cramping and fullness in my chest have been there for days and feel so serious that I just cannot believe that it is not a heart disease. I've had chest pains before and know it can be related to anxiety, but this time it feels very different, more serious/painful and constant. It is not only my chest, my left arm also feels numb and my stomach/the area below my sternum feels like there is a heavy weight on it. Anyway, does anyone recognize this? Can all this really be from anxiety? I do (momentarily) believe my therapist when she says it really is anxiety..but once I leave her office and am on my own again I think 'no she doesn't know, she is not a doctor, I can feel that something is wrong with my heart'. What do I do? I can't take this much longer
  12. Hi, My therapist thinks it would be good for me to start taking citalopram. Apparently you have to take it for at least six months and I've read a lot of negative things about the side effects. I don't want to start taking medication, but my therapist says it might be good because the therapy is less effective at the moment since my fear of disease is constantly very high. Does anyone have any experience with citalopram? Did it help with the health anxiety? Thanks!
  13. I’ve been feeling so off the past few days. I’ve noticed my right arm has been feeling rather tingly but not necessarily weak or paralysis or anything like that, I have Also had a slight headache in and off on the right side of my head/upper neck. OF COURSE I googled Bc I just Couldn’t help myself. And I’ve now convinced myself I’ve got all the symptoms pointing towards brain bleed. Even though my motor skills and functions are fine, I’m not having seizures, I’m not having detrimental head aches, and I’m not losing coordination. What is going on with me!!!
  14. Hi all! I’m totally new to this site, but definitely not new to HA. I’ve been suffering for 11 years. I’m usually pretty good at managing it but occasionally I just get hit with a wave of anxiety that just knocks me down for weeks, sometimes even months at a time. I’m in nursing school and now that my midterms are done I have more time to focus on myself. In the last week alone I have managed to convince myself that I have ovarian cancer, bladder cancer, a kidney infection, a UTI, and now breast cancer. The other symptoms I was having are easy chalked up to a running injury I sustained on my hip a while back and stress, but I’ve always had this lump on my left breast. I exam my breasts weekly because I’m so paranoid but I feel like this thing has changed, I feel like it’s bigger! It’s still soft and moveable, I am about 4 days from starting my period so that could be the case, it’s a bit painful too but that could just be from my constant poking at it. I’m just starting to really second guess myself and I’m convincing myself that I don’t really know my own body. I just feel betrayed and confused. Normally I would go see my doctor but I moved 12 hours from home for school so I have no friends and family around either. I’m just feeling really doomed and upset about this, I’m hoping that someone has had a similar experience that can maybe help calm me down.
  15. The past few weeks I’ve been feeling much better and not having too many panic attacks until 2 days ago when they started back up again. I’ve noticed a ringing in my ears that’s been persistent but if I watch Tv or am talking with someone I’m able to ignore it, if it’s quiet and I focus On it it drives me nuts. I’m trying my hardest not to google because I know Where that will get me. Anyone have any input on ringning in the ears and anxiety??
  16. As some of you know, my daughter has been dealing with a virus for the past few days.I took her to the ER on Thursday where they gave her a flu test and told me that the test was negative but could it still be the flu. As of yesterday morning, she no longer has a fever. I kept her home from school today just for good measure but she still has a mild productive cough. I worry that she is still contagious and am unsure if I should send her back to school tomorrow. The school policy is that they have to be fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medicine but I read online that they could be contagious for up to 7 days after the onset of symptoms. The stuffiness and cough is all that is left. I tried calling her pediatrician but they couldn't tell me without seeing her.The problem with that is she doesn't have health insurance until March 1st and we can't afford a 100$ office visit. Do you think I should send her to school or give it another day? I've been treating her cough with Mucinex and cough and cold meds. Honestly, my cough is worse than hers and I just have rhinitis. Also, I'm still limiting her in terms of roaming the house out or fear of her infecting anyone else if she is still contagious. FYI: She is feeling 10x better. She has been playing and laughing all day and even said she WANTS to go back to school which is a miracle in and of itself. Other than a cough once and a while and some stuffiness, she seems fine. My youngest has a cold and has been coughing more than her. UGH. IDK what to do
  17. I am worried that since my daughter was sick that I have become obsessive over sanitizing my house. I've gone through 3 cans of disinfectant spray and 3 tubes of disinfectant wipes over the past few days. I can't stop myself from using hand sanitizer every time I touch ANYTHING. I'm still worried about her being contagious even though she hasn't had a fever in two days and that makes me worry about my other daughter. Everyone else can make it through the day without fear of leaving the house and getting sick but I have been obsessing over germs lately. I want to go for a run this morning but I'm worried that, because of the colder weather, I'll get sick from being outside. I want to go visit a friend but what if she is sick and doesn't know it yet? Ughhhhh this is so stupid. I have a hard time kissing my husband in the evening when her gets home from work because what if? I know that my health anxiety stems from my parents dying. Like, I can see that my fears are irrational but that doesn't stop them.
  18. Hello everyone, This is the first time ever I am posting on a forum, but, like the title suggests, I just don't know what to do anymore. I have been struggling with health anxiety since I was a teenager. However, this last year it has gotten very bad. Seemingly out of nowhere I started getting panic attacks almost every day. When the panic attacks just started happening I was convinced that there was something wrong with my heart and I went to the emergency room twice. The first time the doctor laughed and said I was way too young to have a heart disease (I was 25 at the time, 26 now). He did measure my blood pressure, which was fine. The second time another doctor said basically the same thing, but at my request he made an ECG, which was looking good. He also checked my left breast for lumps (breast cancer was my other fear) but said he didn't feel anything. (side note: my mother had a weird mole on her leg, went to the doctor who said it was nothing. They later found out it was melanoma, but it had already spread everywhere and she passed away. My grandfather also died because of a mistake a doctor made. This has not helped me trust a doctors opinion). After the two emergency room visits I went to my own doctor to ask for therapy. I was officially diagnosed with health anxiety and generalized anxiety disorder and am now doing CBT focused on health anxiety. The therapy is supposed to teach me to think more rational, but I feel like the therapy is not effective because I still just can not believe that some of my physical symptoms are caused by anxiety (even though on some level I know they probably are). Every single day I have pains in the left side of my body; chest pains, stinging or a dull pain in my left breast, pains in my left armpit, my left ribs and pressure on my sternum. I am still so scared that I have breast cancer, a heart disease or bone cancer. I also know that there is such a thing as 'hypersensitivity', and I do know that I focus way too much on all my physical symptoms and probably make them worse, but I keep thinking 'what if I am doing this therapy and learning to think more rational, while meanwhile some disease is growing and spreading inside of me?'. The physical symptoms are really the biggest problem, most times I feel like I am not even stressed but the constant physical symptoms are what's causing me stress and panic. The pains on the left side of my body are my biggest worry, but in the past two months I have also been convinced that I have bone cancer, a brain tumor, a neck tumor and cervical cancer. Meanwhile, the panic attacks are still happening. Every time I get a panic attack I am scared that this time I really am having a heart attack or a stroke (pressure on chest/in head), that the doctors have missed something important and that this time I am really going to die.. even though I've had them so often and it always turns out I was not dying after all. In the past I've also had CBT for social anxiety disorder and that worked really well, but this time the therapy just doesn't seem to work. I keep convincing myself that I have a serious illness, it is almost impossible for me to believe that I am not sick. I feel like this constant fear is paralyzing me and it is definitely affecting my relationships with other people and my career. The constant aches and pains are making me feel like I am on the verge of death (I know this sounds stupid) and very often I don't see the point of living anymore because I feel I am constantly battling myself. My therapist says I am looking for a 100% guarantee that I am not sick or that nothing bad is going to happen, but that (of course) no one can give me that. I understand that, but honestly I don't know how other people can live their lives and NOT constantly be paralyzed by fear or worry. I know everyone here is dealing with similar things, but does anyone have any advice or wise words for me? Or is there someone who recognizes the daily pains and aches, especially those in left breast/armpit/ribs/chest and sternum? Can all these things really be caused by anxiety, even though to me it feels that the physical symptoms are causing the anxiety instead of the other way around? Thank you so much for reading.
  19. One year ago today, I cam home from work and watched some of the Presidential inauguration. I fell asleep watching on of the inaugural balls and woke up, changed out of my clothes and went to bed. I felt my legs twitch and I layed down in bed. I had been feeling down for a while, work things, family things, felt like a failure in life, had gained a lot of weight since my early 20s. I felt my legs twitch again and decided to google muscle twitching, perhaps the worst thing I've done in my life. We all know what the result is when you google muscle twitching so I won't go into details but I immediately felt my heart start to race and my breathing shorten. I knew Immediately I would die a slow death, where I'd worsen little by little. I knew the economic strain I'd cause on my family and how it would likely ruin them. I regretted that I'd never get to "fix" the mistakes I'd made in the past. I started to think of it might be cheaper if I took my life and at least I wouldn't cause a strain on my family. That would be the first of many sleepless nights. I tried to calm myself but nothing happened. It was pointless so I got up and went to the gym as that used to make me feel better. Not having been to the gym in months I could hardly run on the treadmill or lift weights. I knew that lifting weights would slowly not be a reality for me anymore. I didn't last an hour, I would start to run and my hear would just beat faster. I felt like I would faint. I went home and got ready, heart still pounding. I went to do a work presentation at a school, thinking at any moment my legs could give out. I went to my office for a special Saturday event and took the stairs as many times as I could to remember that I could still take the stairs and that soon would also not be a reality. If I got 4 hours of sleep that whole weekend it might overestimated. I got up Monday and went to work, heart pounding, blood pressure really high. Got home and took my blood pressure, again high. Maybe 2 hours of sleep before I'd wake up and feel the collar of my shirt drenched in sweat. Tuesday, heart pounding, high blood pressure. Went to Urgent Care. They wouldn't see me since what I described to them sounded like a heart attack. Had my parents drive me to the ER. Blood pressure was normal, EKG normal, Chest X-Ray fine, blood tests fine, everything was fine. I felt better but that night would prove sleepless as did many other night for the next month or so. If I did sleep, I would wake up, drenched in sweat. If evrything is ok, why do I feel awful? I would think. Followed up with my doctor. He prescribed weight loss and a mild sleep-aid. Good I thought, if I am going to slowly die at least I can sleep at night. The sleep aid helped some but I would wake up in the middle of the night and say ok maybe I'm not sick so let me google a test I can do for neurological diseases. I would fail the standing on one foot with my eyes closed. My knee kicked a little too erratically in my opinion whe I did a self-reflex test, all serving as confirmation that I was extremely ill. I deserve this I thought, I squandered educational opportunities, dishonored my family. Every bad thing I did in my life came back to haunt me and serve as proof why my fate would be so grim. My heart would pound and race almost daily. I learned to live with it.
  20. Sayruh

    The Flu

    So, I am starting to worry about this flu that is going around. No one in my household has caught it yet and we received our flu shots months ago. I usually don't worry much about the flu every year but this year is very different for obvious reasons. I read somewhere that there were 25 deaths in my state already. Most of which were the elderly. But it still makes me nervous. I've been trying not to go out much but I really don't have a choice but to go run errands on most days. When I do go out in public, I'm sure to use ample hand sani. I also worry about my children catching it while they are at school. I kept my youngest home today because she said she had a stomach ache but I have a hunch that she just has a case of the mondays. I think I am just looking for some reassurance over this flu anxiety. I wish I could just not worry so much about crap like this.
  21. In the winter of 2016, my father lay in a hospital bed slowly dying of pneumonia. Tubes snaked around his body and dangled from a ventilator machine. He was taken down to have tests run but was quickly rushed back. I stood in the open hallway and watched as nurses and staff ran around him frantically moving him into the bed. What they were doing, I couldn't tell you. I can't even recall what tests were being done in the first place. I don't remember where my Mom or my sister were in that moment. All I remember is calmly walking toward his bedside and holding his hand. I looked at my 63-year-old father. His face etched with wrinkles. He looked back up at me, unable to make any sound. I heard a sniffle and glanced at the nurse on the other side of his bed. A tear rolled down her face that was in sync with mine. I looked back at my father, who had tightened his grip around my hand. His lips moved, and he mimed the words "I love you" as a single tear fell from his left eye. I don't remember what happened after that but 2 days later we would be informed as we wait in the corridor that our decision to detach him from the ventilator, had in fact killed him. Perhaps, an act of mercy. I'd refuse to see the body. I will never regret that decision. I wanted my final memory of my father to be the soft miming of "I love you". We shard this moment alone and that will forever be ours. In the start of 2017, my mother would decide to move to Virginia to live with her sister. I drove to her house that morning and sat with her while we waited for my uncle to arrive. We watched the comedian Bo Burnham's videos on YouTube and laughed until we cried. We reminisced about my childhood and discussed politics and religion. I helped he decide what to bring and supported her decision to leave. She'd been a housewife for 30 years. It was her time to be who she wanted and do what she wanted. I received a call from my children's school and was informed that my youngest had puked on the playground, so I had no choice but to leave. I gave her a hug, told her how much I love her and to call me when she made it to Stuart. For the next few weeks, we would talk often. At least once every other day. In February, when her birthday rolled around, I sent her a big, fluffy blanket to keep her warm in those dreaded Virginia winter months. Which, of course, she called and thanked me for. Two days later, whilst my husband and children were touring a house in which we would soon move into, I receive a call from my sister. I walk out to my car and sit on the hood. The crickets chirped, creating a melancholic score. My sister's voice was shaky. I knew before she'd even said the words. I knew the moment her husband's phone number popped up on my caller I.D. My mother was dead. Have you ever felt like the ground you walked on was unstable and that, any minute now, it would collapse and bring you with it? Have you ever hoped that, by some stroke of luck, it WOULD take you? The first thing I wanted to do when I heard of my Mom's death was to call her and talk to her about it but instead, I just hoped for a sinkhole. She didn't get to see me get married in July. We never got to talk about my new house. But, I like to think that she died warm and cozy in her new blanket. And I know, at least, we will always have Bo Burnham. The time between my father dying and my mother dying, I came down with walking pneumonia. At the Urgent Care office, the doctor ordered an x-ray. A few days later, I would walk back into the Urgent Care with no improvement of symptoms. The same doctor would soon tell me, in my frigid, steroid induced anxiety state, that I, for certain, had a lung disease. I didn't know what to think. I couldn't understand what he meant. A lung disease? A life-long chronic condition? What kind of lung disease, you ask? Well, he said "It could be asthma or COPD or emphysema." Then he handed me a box of tissues. There I was,a 26 year old mother of two staring my mortality in the face. Now, perhaps anyone else who hadn't just watch their father pass away in a hospital bed would be able to take this news without the sense of impending doom but me? Over the course of the next two weeks I would writhe with agony over the idea of suffering with a life-long condition. I couldn't understand how a simple cough turned into something that I would need a steroid inhaler for forever. I'd never even had breathing trouble. So, why now? I tried to quit smoking, but that intensified the anxiety. I tried yoga and meditation. I colored in one of those damn adult coloring books. I tried, desperately, to be what I perceived as normal. I went back to the same facility shortly after to have a breathing test done. I blew in to a tube until I couldn't and inhaled medicine from a ventilator that too closely resembled the one that my family made the decision to remove from my father's face. I did that until I shook. An hour after I left, I get a call from the "good" doc-- he said, "It looks like you could have COPD, asthma or emphysema." No change. But I was pissed That rage sent me to find a true general practitioner who, in turn, sent me to get a proper breathing test done in a proper facility with a trained professional. I remember her being very sweet and funny. My new doctor e-mailed me a week later to tell me-- "Your test came back normal. No breathing abnormalities. Fine lung capacity." -Insert Outrage- Ever since that time and those series of traumatically unfortunate events, I have suffered from serious health anxiety. I'm currently dealing with tinnitus that I was sure was a tumor. I went to the ER, had a CT scan and told to see an ENT. But guess what-- although the CT scan gave me peace of mind and I was finally able to eat after 2 days, I realized that I had just been sitting in a waiting room that was nearly filled to the brim with people sick with the flu. -Insert Anxiety-Driven Googling- I wish, sometimes, there were someone beside me, all day every day, to tell me to take it easy. To remind me like my therapist-"Not everything is a ten." She's right, not everything is but everything feels like it. It doesn't seem to matter to my anxiety that I took all of the necessary precautions-- used an entire travel-sized bottle of hand sani, covered my mouth with my shirt (not the provided masks that had been touched by every hand in there), kept my distance from the cesspool of the infected and I even held my breath every time someone passed me. None of that has stopped me from imagining symptoms or from spraying my new jacket with disinfectant. I've washed my hands three times since I have been home, used another half of a bottle of hand sani and soaked in a bath hotter than hell itself. Then, I ended up here.
  22. First, I am extremely sorry for the long post. Around the last days of october I was in the car with my boyfriend, I started getting some chest pain and I lost it. I was going to die. My whole world came crashing down. I started trembling, had tachycardia. He drove me to the emergency room, everything came back fine except the EKG. That day changed my life forever. After that trip to the ER in a span of 1 month I've been at least 5 times, certain I was going to die. about 2 weeks after that episode I got a cold and the worst headache and neck pain (ended up in the ER again, it was just a stong throath infection) ended up losing my voice for a day. I visitited a cardiologist because I was sure something was wrong with my heart, they did an echo an a 24hr holter, I do have MVP but it is very mild, and the tachycardia are benign. I then visited a genecistist because I was convinced I had Vascular Ehlers Danlos Syndome. about a week after that I landed in the ER because I woke up and everything was blurry, I couldn't focus, it went away while in the ER and they could find nothing wrong. I am a 21 years old female from Puerto Rico. In 2013 I find a tick latched onto my spine, I removed it and never tought about it again. In 2016 I found several ticks in my bed and myself in a period of weeks, removed them, fumigated and went on with my life. Then, approximately last month or late november/ early december I found another one. Around Christmas I started getting twitching in my eye, feeling tremors, fasciculations (convinced myself I had ALS), had a muscle cramp which left my calf hurting for some days, tingling in feet, blurred vision almost double vision, extreme itch, and a persisting weird feeling in the sole of my left foot, also I had one day with a headache...I am an the end of my rope, extremely desperate. From the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep I have this sense of impending doom, I feel like at any time I am going to faint, I am having horrible constant episodes of derealization and dissaciosation Since that episode in October I feel like I'm going mad. As of yesterday I discovered what I presume to be a rash on my back, for some reason I've been more aware of my body reactions, and notice I tend to get random hives, under my breast, in my chest, even on my face, they show up, maybe itch and dissapear the same or next day. On Thursday, I had an appointment with a neurologist, I mentioned my fear of Lyme because I am losing my mind and grasping for an answer, he told me that there was no Lyme in Puerto Rico and did not order the test. That same day I had a severe anxiety attack. Although it is true that there are no reported or documented of Lyme in humans or dogs in PR I am still scared crapless. I am biology student I am aware that all of my symptoms could be caused by severe health anxiety and I am exploring that. I made an appoinment with a really good psychologist next monday. As of now my worst symptoms are blurred/double vision, anxiety, panicky feeling, derealization and the 24/7 feeling I am going to drop dead, I currently have the rash of picture #1 but it isn't painful nor it itches. I do get some tingling in my feet but it is usually when I sit in the toilet (lol tmi sorry) and it goes away as soon as I stand up.... these are my main symptoms for the past few days. Today I woke up with a sore throath, chills, and moderate-severe pain all around my body, I've slept most of the day and still feel tired, have a dry cough, although I know it is possible this is just a cold given that my boyfriend had one last week, I can't help to think that this is my "lyme/bartonella" acting up. I need my life back, I am scared and desperate.
  23. Anyone with a problem with THAT word had better not read this. Hi All. There is a sponsored advert on UK TV about cancer and it's affects on relationships. Slogan like " A friend with cancer is still a friend" and "A dad with cancer is still a dad". It raises so many questions about why we identify with illness. When we see someone with a disease or illness, especially an anxiety neurosis, people tend to say, 'Oh yes, the guy/woman with the so and so'. I remember, when in the throes of GAD, hearing someone refer to me as 'He's a know!'. It took a long time to get over that remark, and does highlight how we should take care in using words. Labels!! The medics have to use labels to identify an illness but we don't have to. Big labels hanging round your neck with words like 'I'm a neurotic' or 'I have GAD, or PTSD or XYZ!! It means nothing to the layman who has never suffered from any mental disorder and who tends to look down on anyone so suffering as a failure, or at worse, a write off. Non sufferers can feel very superior when dealing with those with anxiety. It is a great truth that your illness is NOT YOU! Especially anxiety. It may feel like it's eating at the very heart of you but it's not and can't. The real YOU is untouchable and always available for restoration if you really make the effort to find it. Although the feelings and emotions in anxiety feel awful it is really superficial. No matter what illness a person has they are still a dad a mum a friend. We should learn to see beyond the illness to the real person beneath. You guys on this site give your time and make the effort to help others and, in so doing, help yourself. That is what sites like this are about. Sharing.
  24. Well, I broke down and made a trip to the ER. I haven't been to the ER in years. I've resisted the urge many times, with various "symptoms" which are all anxiety related. Today, I just couldn't deal. I started having an acute pain above my belly button and below my sternum. I initially thought it was intestinal related, so I went on doing my thing, figuring it would go away. I had a few palpitations, which is very normal for me; however, the pain didn't go away. The more I waited for it to go away, the more panicked I got...thinking heart attack, especially since I had the pain and palpitations. I made an excuse to my kids, telling them I was going to get a gift, and I went to the ER. After a 20 minute EKG, and observation, and a nasty drink for indigestion, I was released with a diagnosis of reflux. The pain was pretty much gone by the time I got in the observation room. I had a few pains here and there in my intestinal area, but no more acute pain in that original spot. I'm 37. Healthy. Really don't do anything to compromise my health like smoking. Yet, I run to the ER...because of anxiety. Bottom line...I have a phobia of dying. Guilt. Burden. Sad. Tired. Selfish. All things I am. Health anxiety is sucking the life out of me.
  25. Hi there, I have to warn you that this is going to be the most idiotic thread. Actually I was reported for trolling on another board when I talked about my thoughts. Guess they are a bit crazy. So years ago I struggled with fears about the health and safety of my loved ones, but I got better. So. I am married now. DH has been diagnosed with combat PTSD but I am not sure if the diagnosis is an accurate one, because he is very different from other people with the same desease. For example: he shows no aggression, he never walked out on me and so on. He struggles with crowds, has insomnia and actually fears for the safety of his loved ones just like I used too. Actually I wondered if he has a bit of OCD. So I wasn‘t sure if the diagnosis was correct. Yesterday we met with his folks. And I noticed that his mother had a twitch of her hands. I never noticed that before. Well, my Dh has a light twitch of his face when he feels stressed and sometimes his hands tremble a bit... Well, suddenly I remembered how I did read a book about a family suffering from Chorea Huntington. A heritable but deadly condition. It starts with twitching and psychological problems and in the end sufferers become unable to move and die. I have been up all night, because one of our children was sick and woke every two hours and I have been reading about Chorea Huntington and there was one info that really shocked me. I learned that people with Chorea often gobble down their food... and dh does this too. He has great manners and was brought up to be polite but he eats as if we were going to steal his food. Nobody in his family has ever been diagnosed with Chorea Huntington, his mother’s parents both lived to their nineties and no sign of Chorea Huntington. BTW I also have „diagnosed“ dh with colon cancer this week and I think he really needs to see a doctor and hope I can make him, because I friend who is knowledgeable about medicine said he has something that should be checked plus colon cancer really runs in his family. This night he woke to (he has insomnia). Told him about my Huntington fear and I think he was a bit annoyed because I am already bothering him to see a doctor to get a check up if he has cancer... but he hugged me and told me how no one in his family ever suffered from Huntington. No idea, why I am suddenly so fearful again. I think it is good to continue to bother him to have himself checked for cancer but I should no bother him with my Huntington fears, should I. Tanks for reading. Merry Christmas!