I find it hard to believe that it is just health anxiety (again)

I'm going to try not to go into too many specifics, or else this will turn into an essay.

I've been dealing with health anxiety since October 2016, after a panic attack that I thought was a heart attack, but was most likely linked to a respiratory infection I found out I had within the same week. Even after the infection passed, I was still having panic attacks and symptoms that made me worry about my heart.

My heart was a real concern to me, because I had a half-sibling that died a couple of years ago in his home country and he was talking about his heart hurting. Me never experiencing what I was feeling, I was scared it might have been a heart issue and wanted to make sure it wasn't one. So after a visit to the GP, I had appointments made to see a cardiologist and a GI. I ended up having an echocardiogram and a stress test in early November and after they told me that my results came out as normal as can be for somebody my age (I was 20 at the time). For the rest of the year, I was starting to feel like myself again. Eating about as much as I could eat before anxiety was an issue and other small stuff I had issue with before I got those results. I didn't feel the need to have an endoscopy that the GI was going to schedule after my tests.

Fast forward to now, and I feel like I've regressed back to how I felt before my worries were temporarily gone. I've been dealing with pain in my arms and legs. I noticed my legs have gotten more vascular than usual whenever I walk for too long, it gets painful that it prevents me from exercising as planned. I wonder if this is linked to the weight I lost during my first bout with eating troubles back in October, as I went from around 140-something to 120-something . I've always been skinny, so losing weight is another concern of mine. I have eating trouble again and feel pain and trouble swallowing sometimes whenever I try to eat. It all makes me feel like I have a heart problem again, or maybe something pulmonary or neurological. It makes me stop eating sometimes because I'm not sure if it is some acid relux type of thing that flairs when I'm anxious, or something worse, like a heart attack or stroke.

I've been wondering if the months after those tests done were enough time for something to come up and it doesn't help at all. Being skeptical is in my nature, and I'm always questioning things. Before the anxiety stuff started, I felt like it has always helped me. Now, it just makes me think of too many possibilities whenever I start to doubt myself and the doctors' evaluations.

I'm scheduled for an endoscopy this Friday and I don't know what to expect, but I just hope to move on to the next step to help me recover and get back to living my life again. Living my life as I did before all of this, but much better. I've been out of school since the beginning of last year's Fall semester because my parents and I couldn't pay for classes out of pocket, and I really didn't feel like taking out any private loans (that is another story). I'm hoping to go back to school this Fall semester. I have to pay of some school fees before I can even think about registering again and the loans I took out from the government are starting to charge me for payments and I haven't had the energy to bother seeing if I could have post-pone. Then some medical bills went to collections and I have those other bills pending. There's only so much my parents can do, and I want to be able to help pay off what I owe.

So yeah, I'm kind of stressed about the things that aren't happening to me physically and mentally, but it's not something I bother think about. I just wanna get my health right so I can get back to work and school. Thank you for reading all of this and I'm sorry for any format, grammar, and punctuation mistakes if there are any. I sort of typed this to ask for any ideas on what may be wrong with me, but I also wanted some place to vent. My parents say I can talk to them, but there are some things I don't feel too comfortable discussing with them unless I think it is absolutely urgent and/or necessary. I haven't talked much to any of my friends since this started, and I've only seen about 5 since this started, and the anxiety symptoms I was experiencing made it difficult to be my usual energetic self. So I turn to the internet. This is the second time I've wrote such a long post about my problem. I've been thinking for months that I may need to see a therapist or counselor after I go through all of the possible test and check-ups I can.


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8 Replies

  • Also been feeling numbness and pain in the jaw area as well but it varies. And the pain in my neck that's really bothering right now is right between the ends of my collar bones. I was looking down at my phone not too long when I started to feel pain there.

    There's this terrible pain I started feeling in the back of my left knee although it isn't the first time I've felt pain there. It's spooking me out though.

  • Hi black, You certainly have an overwhelming health anxiety issue but I can understand how it came about after the passing of your half sibling. Being skeptical can also put a lot of additional fear on you. Questioning things regarding your health can make you self doubt yourself and the doctors after a while. I understand how just life itself can bring about stress with school, work and bills to be paid. But first things first, in getting a health check and seeing if you are back to this being an anxiety issue.

    I think seeing a therapist would help so that you can be open and honest as to the things bothering you, more so than with family. I wish you well with your upcoming test this Friday. Hope all turns out well. Stay in touch. Keep strong and take care.

  • Thank you Agora! I hope so too.

  • Go take a look at my profile. We sound like twins. You aren't alone.

  • I quit seeing my therapist which was a mistake… I had so many things going on and also lost my brother at the end of January from a car accident. I think sometimes these dramatic events cause our anxieties to flare up even more. I called today to make an appointment with a new therapist here in town and I hope that she can help me.

  • Dang, I'm sorry to hear about your brother. And I agree, I think such events can trigger anxiety. The thing is, I've never met my brother. When I heard he died, I was more concerned about how my mother felt. I felt bad about t what happened, but I knew it she was affected the most by his death.

    Although the cardiologist I saw said that is was most likely a virus of some sort that killed him (and that relieved me a bit), I've been starting to think "what if I had it." It's ridiculous, but that is anxiety I guess.

  • Jenny1435, I am so sorry for the loss of your brother. By all means, tragic life events will bring up our anxieties. I'm glad you will be seeing a new therapist soon. Healing takes time. x

  • Thank you ❤

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