Could This Really Be Hypochondria?

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Hello all, I'd like to hear some second thoughts on some of the things I have been experiencing lately.

As of around six months ago, I began having severe panic attacks daily, sometimes several times a day. After a particularly terrible day of panic, I started researching online what could have been wrong. Of course, what came up was a plethora of heart-related subjects. Since then, I haven't stopped worrying about my health and the possibility of illness, cardiovascular ones in particular.

I haven't had as many panic attacks, but each day I get symptoms on their own such as heart palpitations, chest pain/funny feeling in chest, derealization, shortness of breath or hyperventilation, tightness in my throat, shakiness, dizziness, weird sensations in my tongue, hot flashes, or various other physical symptoms.

Yesterday I was laying in bed (not feelings anxious), and suddenly the right side of my body went numb, and seconds later my heart beat increased; it's never been so fast and pounding before. Today, I awoke with a twinning feeling in my chest and a numb mouth. I've never felt numbness due to panic attacks before, so you can imagine how much I panicked when that happened.

I have been to my doctor once or twice as well as a pulmanologist (before these last few 'stranger' panic attacks), but none could find anything wrong. I haven't been to a cardiologist due to a lack of money, time, and frankly I'm embarrassed of the possibility of it all being in my head. My doctor said she doesn't believe it's heart related (I'm only eighteen as well). I just can't stop this fear that I'm dying though. It seems all I do is obsess over my physical symptoms and look up possibilities on the Internet (Which is a terrible idea, I know.)

Are these physical symptoms a sign of illness, or do they relate to hypochondria? Could these actually be panic attacks? Is it hypersensitivity? I'm just terrified that I'm dying all the time.

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Welcome to the world of anxiety. I have had many similar experiences to yours, related specifically to heart related concerns. Yes, random panic attacks, heart palpitations, the night sweats, all that stuff. My palms would sweat, I couldn't eat. The more I focused on the symptoms the more they came. The internet you're right... it's the absolutely worst place to look for any of this because all it'll do is drive you crazy. You need to find some calm and for crying out loud stop looking up symptoms! You cannot do that to yourself, you simply can't. It's a bottomless cycle that you do not and will not want to get yourself caught up in or stay caught up in. It'll only get worse if you do.

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