Anxiety Support
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Do you know how I can help my friend?

I have a female friend, who is only 13, and she is having some health trouble at the moment. About a month ago, she had a few panic attacks. And today she has been complaining about her chest and throat being painful, and it being hard to breathe. I think she has a bit of hypochondria, because she seemed to link all of her symptoms to possible illnesses like a heart attack or lung cancer. I think she is afraid, because her dad passed away from lung cancer, and at first the doctors just thought he was having panic attacks. And only recently she went into hospital, and the doctors told her it was just panic attacks. So I can understand why she is afraid. But I don't know a lot about this? So I don't know how to help! And also, she wants to go and see her doctor, but her mum doesn't want her to go. I don't want to seem nosey, so I don't know why that is. But is there anything I can say to help her? Or anything she can tell her mum?

4 Replies

Hello BOB here

This girl is just entered her teens, most of the problems are caused I would say due to panic attacks, She saw Her Dad die of lung cancer, She is possibly feeling that and if after the death with her being young She will possibly be having problems with Her loss, this can be amplified more in a young person who most probably has not sorted out her feelings regarding loss of such a close person in her life

She needs kindness and understanding and possibly go back to the GP and have her fears addressed and any confusion regarding her loss of a parent at such an early part of life

When She visits the GP, it may well be an idea that the mother goes as well, this is a good idea as the mother will be possibly having problems regarding the loss also. This will possibly be transmitting from the grieving the daughter and nothing is being discussed between them, they both need too talk. The doctor can also give tests to help ease the girls worries regarding her symptoms.

The advice I have given is my own opinion, I am not a doctor, so all things regarding this problem be discussed with their GP, or if needed, the doctor would decide this a visit to a Councillor who deal with this type of complaint this will be decided if required by your GP as he is the partner in this families health

Hope this helps, this is my opinion remember I am not a doctor

Good luck



Hello there

Not sure how much help I can be but, I came on here looking for help for my daughter, who was 14 at the time (now just 15).

The first step really is for her to see her gp. Could she maybe ring up herself & make an appointment? The gp can then refer her to camhs (child & adolescent mental health services). Now that might sound scary but trust me it's not. These are people who deal with this kind of thing every day. My daughter goes there now & they have been a huge help. They have made her realise that it is actually quite common at her age to have these kinds of problems. She also has Health Anxiety (hypochondria) among other things but is much improved. One thing though, the sooner she can get the right help, the better the outcome will be.

If her mum won't take her to the docs is there a school counsellor or someone she could talk to?

There is also a website that might be helpful

I hope this helps & can I say what a good friend you are :)




You have been given some good advise here , I hope it helps

Please if you can , let us no how your friend goes on & as thomson says , she is lucky to have a friend like you :)






Even if your friend is not having a heart attach her symptoms will seem very real to her if they are linked to Panic, so she is not a hypochondriac!

Please try the following link: and look at the panic leaflet, it describes what panic feels like very well.

Hope this might help.

Leveller x


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