Anxiety Support

Dreading winter illnesses?

It`s only mid August, but I`m already getting a bit anxious about the coming winter. It`s not just the cold dark evenings that I hate, the biggest fear that I have is norovirus. I can just about cope with colds, & I get a flu jab at my local supermarket every October, but I really can`t wait for the norovirus vaccine. I know most people are very cavalier about stomach bugs, & don`t worry about catching them or spreading them to other people, but I`m emetophobic, & norovirus is the worst thing about winter by far. I can remember when I was growing up in the 50`s & 60`s, people caught stomach bugs, mainly children, but todays viruses seem to be much more vicious, I mean you read on facebook & hhear people saying that they had projectile vomiting 10, or 15 times or more in one night, & people being so ill that they ended up in hospital with dehydration, & that the drugs that they were given to stop the vomiting didn`t work. I had a few stomach upsets as a kid, but I was never anywhere near as ill as people get with noro, In fact I haven`t had a stomach virus since 1970. I take all the precautions that your`e supposed to to avoid this evil bug,

but what I can`t understand is why it`s so much more sevre nowadays. Are viruses evolving to be more virulent, or are people less resistant nowadays?

8 Replies

Omg i can totally relate to what your saying, I also have Emetophobia, Have had it for years. im so scared of getting a stomach bug, not just the sickness but the stomach part as well without going into to much detail.Everyday i live in fear that i will catch something. i remember when a bad bout of it was going around and i was terrified especially when they said you can get sickness with swine flu :(

If you ever wanna chat then just message me on here, My Name is Jen by the way x


Hello hairy.

I totally get your sense of dread...I'm emetophobic too, last season was so long and so bad - I have three children and was on constant edge with two at school, because I am constantly going on about hand washing ect they avoided it by some miracle - it was so bad they cancelled the xmas disco and closed the school a day early for a deep clean...I'm not quite on edge yet with school and stuff because I can trust them 2 to know what to in the event of another noro event - it's the toddler who has just started nursery I'm worried about...Like you I just wish others wouldn't be so flippant about it esp parents - would it really hurt to keep the kids quarantined for 48 hours, I would. Fingers crossed that we wont have another season like that for another few years :)



Hi hairyfairy

I have been trying to avoid any virus that has been going around this Summer as it doesnt just seem to be a Winter thing any more

I try & avoid coming into contact with anyone that might have been or had a virus , as I find I seem to get them so much worse , I dont no if thats anxiety & the fact we are slightly run down to start with , never sure on that one

Again there does seem to be more things going about every year , never sure if we speak about them more & are aware now a days that makes us think this , or as we no back in the olden days there were a lot of dreadful health illness's but they were not spoken about like they are now

You sound like you are taking every precaution that you can & I no its not easy as this is your fear , but as you say , you havnt had a stomach bug since a child , which is a good sign





I`m so glad that I chose not to have children, because I`d never have a moment`s peace of mind, I know that kids are very susceptible to these bugs.I`d more than likely pass on my issues to them . I think that it`s mainly a control issue with me, & of course, I hate nasty messes as well. I`m also scared that I`ll be taken ill in public, because I`ve heard that noro comes on very suddenly, & I can`t stand the idea of throwing up in public, so humilliating!


Norovirus doesn't come on that quick, it's usually during the night when it starts. I've not heard of projectile vomiting, I work in a children's centre with a nursery attached and we get it every year. I didn't get it last year but did the year before, it started for most of us about 2am in the morning it wasn't nice I admit, although I wasn't too bad and felt alot better the day after that. Dehydration comes usually to the very young or very old. With toddlers they are made to drink whatever they fancy and with the very old they might be on their own and unable to get out of bed easily.

I have also done a half day course about how not to spread germs ( I work for the nhs) hand washing is the best thing to do, using solid soap is better than liquid. Also use anti bac on your hands every 4th hand wash.

I hope that helps a little bit and doesn't scare you about washing your hands

Take care

Winter xxxxx


My daughter is also emetophobic, it was a bout of norovirus that started it. It was

really bad but I won't go into detail. As Winter said, hers came on in the middle of the night which is why she now won't go to bed, she has slept on the sofa for months.

She is in year 10 & I do wish parents would stick to the school policy of keeping children away for 48 hours after sickness. So many times she has come home terrified because she has been sitting next to someone or even given them a hug only to find out they were ill the previous night.

She started washing her hands so frequently she now has eczema (split bleeding hands)& can't use soap, she has prescription creams to use instead although she complains she doesn't feel 'properly clean' when she uses them.The doc also told her to avoid the anti-bac gels, you know, the ones you can use if there's nowhere to wash. Told her they are the worst things for bringing on eczema if used too often.

I don't know what the answer is, maybe people now feel more pressure to turn up to work/school so go in regardless I don't know. I just know I'll be dreading it too.



Reading this thomson the run- ins I had with school

My son was one of those that seemed to pick every bug up going & I would always keep him at home till I knew he was better , yet school would be on my back saying he had to much time of & my argument would be well if everyone kept theirs of when they were ill , he wouldnt keep picking things up would he ?

Schools round here dont seem to like children been of , it affects their attendance records & thats all they seem bothered about

Well since he has left school , so far he has hardly had anything , so in my head that proves a point



Can't argue with you there whywhy. Have always kept dd off for at least 48 hrs after bugs like that. Schools are only concerned with their league tables.

I know some will struggle for childcare when children are ill but something to be expected & planned for surely.

Oops, getting near that high horse, will shush.

Your head is right, see, it hasn't gone completely :D



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