Can Anxiety really do all of this??

Im having a really hard time with myself. Im always thinking im gonna either get cancer or have a heartattack. My breathing is horrible in my chest and all. I always find something wrong and I think im gonna die then I panic my blood pressure has went up and everything. Ive had every blood test in the book. A cardiogram done and x rays and listening on my lungs.... nothing all came back normal.. does anxiety cause muscles spasms and pain in the arms as well. My arms have been jumping I didn't see it jump but inside I felt something knocking around in my arms. And im so tired. Sleeping all the time naps everyday. And I feel like complete crap.... everyday is this really what anxiety can do

2 Replies

  • Our brains are wired to detect threats in our environment. Now most people only detect and react to immediate threats e.g. "I only have £5 left in my bank account, I may run out of money" or "they are making redundancies at my work, I may lose my job". Unfortunately people with anxiety see threats in everything I.e. everything which could possibly be a threat to you, even if it is not immediately a threat right now. Your brain knows that heart disease and cancer are two of the biggest killers and it responds by saying "that is a threat to my survival" and producing an anxiety response. It says "if I'm alert, I can spot this threat when it comes." Unfortunately this is what produces the extreme anxiety about symptom checking which many of those with anxiety have. Unfortunately that isn't healthy for you, as beyond keeping a healthy lifestyle and getting health check ups there is absolutely nothing you can do to control the threat of heart disease and cancer, and stress actually contributes to poor health. A lot of reducing anxiety is about recognising that you have no control. I can't control whether I get cancer, beyond having a healthy lifestyle. I can't control whether I get made redundant, beyond trying to do a good job. I can't control whether people reject me, beyond being the best person I can and hoping it's enough. When you're in a state of anxiety, just recognising "I feel this way because my mind thinks there's a threat to my survival" can help you see things in perspective and realise there isn't really an immediate threat at all. Yes, we may all get cancer one day, but the important thing whilst we are healthy isn't to worry how long it will last, it's to make the most of our time and enjoy life and the ones we love.

  • Yup! Anxiety CAN do just about anything! Maybe just accepting that fact might help you a bit! :) I hope so.... The mind/imagination is our most powerful possession (honest to goodness!) and a friend of mine that sounds amazingly like you (pertaining to what you wrote) just finally took a "I give up" attitude and stopped trying to figure it out... She said it helped...and kept repeating little mantras (affirmations) to herself like "Whatever it is it is" or "So who cares" or saying other not-so-nice-or-fluffy little things... but she always added "This too will pass...and if it comes back, well, that that will also pass" ... That last one helps me... There is a Buddhist saying: What we resist, persists.... Plus, we get what we focus on and give our attention to... I have to remind myself of that a lot! Good luck to you!

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