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Anxiety and Depression Support
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Health Anxiety- Help!

I need some support. I have always been a very anxious person but believe I am struggling with health anxiety to the maximum and have been at a really high level of anxiety for the last 4-5 days.

There are two things that I think started this-

1. Last week I was on the antibiotic augmentin for dental issues and had a really bad reaction- which I now think was a panic attack. I was dizzy, felt like I was going to pass out and really was convinced I was dying. It was so scary I really feel traumatised by it.

2. A water drop on my head that wasn’t actually there. Yes I know it sounds crazy. But I was laying in bed and felt a distinct drop of water fall on my head. When I went to wipe it off my head was dry. So of course I googled it- and of course it led me to MS. And THEN, naturally, I have been feeling every symptom I read about since then 😭

I have now been terrified since that night that I have MS. I went to the Urgent care and told the Dr all my symptoms and he said it was severe anxiety and prescribed me lexapro. Logically I know all my symptoms didn’t start until I read about them, but how do I stop this constant terror and fear? Its been debilitating 😭

Anyone else have any similar experiences? My husband is so amazing and supportive but I feel really alone in this and like I’m going insane.

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You are on high alert by the sounds of things. Dr. Google is not a good doctor lol, he just throws everything at us and let's us choose what is wrong. A real doc looks at the evidence and your individual experiences. It is difficult when we make a negative association with something, like you did with your antibiotic. Try to look at it logically if you can, I know it is a real struggle but try. Being concerned about our health when we feel unwell is perfectly natural but if it becomes a bigger issue then it can totally takeover. There is usually an explanation for things and tests etc... Have your regular health checks and I hope you keep well.

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Thank you!! I am definitely on high alert haha my dr put me slightly at ease until I left and thought “I forgot to tell him one of my symptoms”. Man it’s a vicious cycle!

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I've done that many times. :)

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Isn’t it so frustrating!! And then I start to feel only the symptoms I forgot to tell the Dr and that sets me off again 😞

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Well, that's where it becomes important to stop that thought.

I found out that once you don't mention a symptom as one of the

top 3, the doctor's tend to tune out. And never, try telling them as

you are going out the door. That will make you feel even worse.

It can wait until next time. :) xx

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For starters, NEVER google your symptoms! In your condition, your eyes will leap to the worst possibility there, and you won't be able to get it out of your head. Don't play doctor with yourself! Take your health concerns to your GP, and let him or her evaluate you.

Secondly, get any of the books by Dr. Claire Weekes on how to conquer panic and anxiety. Dr. Weekes suffered from them herself and devised a method to overcome them. There are videos of her on YouTube that you can watch for free.

Also, there are lots of relaxation videos with music on Youtube as well. Your nervous system is strained from the panic attack and fears of another one. Make it a point to calm down, get all the adrenaline out of your system, and give your nerves a chance to rest.

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You are so right, and I have pledged to myself and my husband(poor guy) that I will not google my symptoms again. Today I went to this forum and read other people’s experiences with health anxiety instead and it helped calm my racing thoughts so much. I have heard about Dr Weekes a few times now!! I will definitely look her up, thank you :)

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I can honestly say that what you say is so true we all tend to google too much and look up our anxieties about healthhowever,on the other hand if it wasn't for DrWEeks book I most certainly don't know where id be.I have only had to change my surgery by law,(I think)and the new gp is acting unethically,notinasmuch as tapering off diazepam after almost 28yearsbut treating me as less than a person as well as stating things just recently(still raw)saying he thought id phoned the surgery as I was suicidal-all id asked was how to get on C.M.NUrse..there has been other incidents such as phone back-ringing twice,and hanging up and making out im not responding,im furious and if anything has created more Anxiety just when im beginning to find my voice and bearings for want of a different expression.what do I do-only2 others in practise-im quite unnerved by all of this!sorry to harp on.

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I wish I could be of more help, but I live in US, so I'm not familiar with your health care system. If you're not happy with the quality of your treatment, there must be someone in your health service to complain to, or ask for a transfer to another doctor.

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Yes,I guess I will have to assert myself,though I wouldn't be at all surprised if he alerts the remaining doctors that im only after diazepam-which is not the case---its very upsetting but thanks for responding.

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❤ Your not alone and big hug to you for reaching out for help when you need it!

I think I have had a similar reaction to penicillin and my youngest son gets the same reaction. No throat closing or anything but I feel heavy and the room spins makes me feel very lethargic and dizzy for several hours. My medical record lists it as an allergy cuz I had a worse reaction when I was small and hospitalized for pneumonia but my son's Dr said that it is not a typical allergic reaction but agrees we should avoid it. So unless I take him for allergy testing his medical record shows it as a "sensitivity" to penicillin.

And I also feel very much the same when I Google a symptom or medical issue! So I feel your pain on this one too! ❤ My mind likes to jump to the worst case scenario. I think everything is cancer. I find it helps to look up the statistics for something too like what is the probability that someone will get/have this condition? Like any other fear "How likely is this to actually happen to me?" Yes bear attacks happen but how often am I actually outside in the woods alone right next to a hungry bear? Not often and I live on 80 acres of land next to a federal park in Canada. I like to throw logic at myself because you are so right about the fear being debilitating. During what I call one of my lows social anxieties can have me refusing to even open any messages on my phone or calling in sick from work cuz I can't move for fear people are judging me. Fact is most people are too busy thinking about themselves and even if they aren't their thoughts are not my business! The logic is hard to remember sometimes though.

So I looked and hopefully this is helpful to you as it is meant to be ❤ Google also says "The MS risk is 1 in 750 for most people, 1 in 40 for those with close family members with the disease and 1 in 4 for those with an identical twin who has it."

I like you also like to check in with my Hubby❤ on these feelings. Good support can be a Godsend!

BUT if you still feel that this might be a health concern for you ask your Doctor. Make an appointment with your regular Doctor and write down a list of your concerns. Tell them the symptoms you had and ask for their professional medical opinion. I like to go to my regular Dr. for these questions cuz I am more comfortable with her and I know she legitimately listens to my concerns and will run tests if she thinks it's possible. I don't feel that way with emerge or walk in clinic doctors myself.

❤ Best of luck and best wishes for your health as well!

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Thank you so much for your reply! It was very comforting. I did go to my Dr and he told me to stop googling and prescribed me some medications that I hope will help. I know what you mean about not opening messages! I have gone weeks at a time without replying to friends or family before and then I always have to do that awkward “heyyy sorry I’ve been so busy lately” thing each time. But, we are who we are and what we go through can be so difficult. Thank you again 💙

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Being well-attuned to your body is actually a good thing when it doesn’t induce further anxiety or lead to hypervigilance or an exacerbation of your symptoms. I think it’s a wise idea to talk about it within a supportive community like this one when in fact it does promote worry or a sense of uneasiness.

If your anxiety is already high, it might help to avoid Googling your symptoms and refraining from visiting all medical-related websites that openly share diagnostic information on nearly thousands of physical and mental health disorders. You could try this and see if it helps. I know it’s difficult because most of us are online for several hours a day.

Do you think maybe your husband or another family member or friend could assist with that? I know that whenever I’m trying to break out of a certain pattern or adopt a new habit, it always helps me to have another person to hold me accountable.

I think you can do this despite how threatening it may seem right now. I’ll be praying for your strength and for you to overcome your worry, fear and anxiety. Btw, it’s wonderful you have a husband who shows you so much and love and support. It's something many people are lacking these days. You are truly blessed, my friend -- so hang in there!

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Thank you, I am very grateful for him! I have managed not to google any symptoms for a few days now :) but of course now new symptoms have started. Like pain in my arms, knees, and down the front of my lower legs 😭 it’s so frustrating. It seems like a new symptom/focus every day. Does this happen to you?

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Hi~ I apologize for the late reply and congratulations on avoiding the urge to google! Not so easy i know. I actually have not experienced this as a result of doing internet research but I know people who have. I hope this becomes less of a pattern for you and that you will see a noticeable improvement in your health as the weeks and months go by. Now that we have begun Daylight Saving Time, you might feel more like participating in some type of outdoor activity even if it's just for an hour a day to start. Sunshine is always beneficial and can help our minds to focus on the good in our life. I know this can be hard but with some help from nature (sunlight and fresh air), I think you'll find it's entirely possible and pleasurable. We could all stand to accept that challenge...Be encouraged! :-)

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