Health anxiety... Watch

Anonymous #1
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how do you deal with it? any success stories?
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TheAnxiousSloth
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I used to experience chest pain, headaches, dizziness, nausea, electric shock sensations etc on a daily basis as a result of my anxiety (which then enhanced my anxiety). It got to the point where this just became my body's natural response to everything and there were many times where I thought I was having a heart attack or had something like a brain tumour.
A couple of weeks ago, I went to the doctors about my anxiety and they gave me some beta-blocker tablets. Since I started taking the tablets, I haven't experienced any of those symptoms and I no longer worry about having deadly diseases all of the time!
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killercars
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I'm currently going through a pretty intense episode of mortality anxiety with looping obsessive thoughts. I worry about getting cancer in the far future and when i see people who die young/middle aged/60s or 70s it convinces me I will too. I feel that if I was guaranteed to die at a very old age I'd be okay.

I have to keep trying to remember that it's just anxiety. I often get cancer dreams where I'm diagnosed and then feel like I have it.

The thing I try to remember is that if I had cancer, I would know about it. My mum told me that the symptoms are VERY obvious and not only is it rare in young people, I would KNOW if I had, say, a brain tumour because I'd be having intense headaches, blurry vision and feel very poorly indeed.

Another thing that helps is to be able to relax and accept that you feel the way you do about your health. Don't fight the thoughts, accept that you have health anxiety. Having health anxiety won't cause you to die or become ill from stress. Stress and anxiety simply cannot kill you. Often people who have health anxiety feel the way they do because they have a lack of control in their personal life, very true for me because of my family situation.

Drinking chamomile tea, sitting with people you trust and hugging them and having them hold you close, getting into a good bedtime routine and staying off screens an hour before bed are all very helpful to me during this time.

SSRI antidepressants, such as sertraline (which i've started a few days ago! wish me luck!) have been known to help obsessive anxious thoughts. I know people who have taken sertraline have found it very very helpful and stopped obsessive thoughts from triggering panic, allowing a clearer mind. If you haven't considered SSRIs, they are worth a try. Stay away from benzodiazapenes (such as diazepam) as they cause horrific withdrawals and are actually damaging drugs. Beta-blockers also help reduce increased heart rate with panic attacks and can ease physical symptoms. I take them for my heart (I have a non-life threatening heart condition), but personally they don't take away my anxious thoughts.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by LeCroissant)
I used to experience chest pain, headaches, dizziness, nausea, electric shock sensations etc on a daily basis as a result of my anxiety (which then enhanced my anxiety). It got to the point where this just became my body's natural response to everything and there were many times where I thought I was having a heart attack or had something like a brain tumour.
A couple of weeks ago, I went to the doctors about my anxiety and they gave me some beta-blocker tablets. Since I started taking the tablets, I haven't experienced any of those symptoms and I no longer worry about having deadly diseases all of the time!
sounds exactly what I am experiencing. I've been having chest pain throat pain crazy heart rate and vertigo to the point where I was rushed to A&E twice to find absolutely nothing. gp then diagnozed me with generalised anxiety disorder and it still gives me pains. it sucks i understand your pain, but im trying to stay off those type of drugs because of their side effects... :confused: glad to know you're doing well though keep it up!
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It's****ingWOODY
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(Original post by LeCroissant)
I used to experience chest pain, headaches, dizziness, nausea, electric shock sensations etc on a daily basis as a result of my anxiety (which then enhanced my anxiety). It got to the point where this just became my body's natural response to everything and there were many times where I thought I was having a heart attack or had something like a brain tumour.
A couple of weeks ago, I went to the doctors about my anxiety and they gave me some beta-blocker tablets. Since I started taking the tablets, I haven't experienced any of those symptoms and I no longer worry about having deadly diseases all of the time!
I've been on beta blockers for ages and I still get this stuff :lol: What dosage are you on per day?
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by killercars)
I'm currently going through a pretty intense episode of mortality anxiety with looping obsessive thoughts. I worry about getting cancer in the far future and when i see people who die young/middle aged/60s or 70s it convinces me I will too. I feel that if I was guaranteed to die at a very old age I'd be okay.

I have to keep trying to remember that it's just anxiety. I often get cancer dreams where I'm diagnosed and then feel like I have it.

The thing I try to remember is that if I had cancer, I would know about it. My mum told me that the symptoms are VERY obvious and not only is it rare in young people, I would KNOW if I had, say, a brain tumour because I'd be having intense headaches, blurry vision and feel very poorly indeed.

Another thing that helps is to be able to relax and accept that you feel the way you do about your health. Don't fight the thoughts, accept that you have health anxiety. Having health anxiety won't cause you to die or become ill from stress. Stress and anxiety simply cannot kill you. Often people who have health anxiety feel the way they do because they have a lack of control in their personal life, very true for me because of my family situation.

Drinking chamomile tea, sitting with people you trust and hugging them and having them hold you close, getting into a good bedtime routine and staying off screens an hour before bed are all very helpful to me during this time.

SSRI antidepressants, such as sertraline (which i've started a few days ago! wish me luck!) have been known to help obsessive anxious thoughts. I know people who have taken sertraline have found it very very helpful and stopped obsessive thoughts from triggering panic, allowing a clearer mind. If you haven't considered SSRIs, they are worth a try. Stay away from benzodiazapenes (such as diazepam) as they cause horrific withdrawals and are actually damaging drugs. Beta-blockers also help reduce increased heart rate with panic attacks and can ease physical symptoms. I take them for my heart (I have a non-life threatening heart condition), but personally they don't take away my anxious thoughts.
Sounds exactly like my situation, i've had constant chest and throat pains as well as odd cancer signs according to google to think that I have some sort of cancer because of my smoking and alcohol abuse to relieve my thoughts ( i too have been going through some horrible times ), been to doctors and been given all clear but told i have this generalized anxiety disorder and depression though but still somewhat obsessed... its crazy, especially when its taking over your life i've always had a bit of anxiety but recently its been uncontrollable.

thanks for the tips i'll try to add them. i'm laying off the smokes and alcohol too which has been really helpful as well as including exercise in my routine, still a long way to go but some progress > no progress.

good luck with the SSRIs, i have been prescribed drugs but been hesitant due to their side effects, but hopefully it goes well for you
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Final Fantasy
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Pop a benzo or a strong painkiller and it goes away for me.
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whatsthenews
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(Original post by Final Fantasy)
Pop a benzo or a strong painkiller and it goes away for me.
till you become addicted to one or both of them. They aren't M and M's you know.Should you really be on the TSR support team if you're posting rubbish like this?
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Final Fantasy
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(Original post by whatsthenews)
till you become addicted to one or both of them. They aren't M and M's you know.Should you really be on the TSR support team if you're posting rubbish like this?
I've been prescribed them for years and they work for me as directed. Painkiller for chronic back, neck and shoulder pain and benzo for the skeletal muscle relaxant which also relieves anxiety symptoms. I also have pregabalin which works wonderfully.

Who's stupid enough to take them without exhausting other options? I think I know by now my own conditions thanks.
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whatsthenews
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(Original post by Final Fantasy)
I've been prescribed them for years and they work for me as directed. Painkiller for chronic back, neck and shoulder pain and benzo for the skeletal muscle relaxant which also relieves anxiety symptoms. I also have pregabalin which works wonderfully.
But you can't assume that everyone else is prescribed these drugs by their GP and they certainly don't know that you are, so the implication is that they go out and buy benzodiazepines or strong painkillers to take for their anxiety and that that is a safe and sensible thing to do. If you need them for pain then so be it, but they are highly addictive and shouldn't generally be taken together especially if someone is going to drive or operate machinery. Even taken separately they can impair judgenment and slow reactions etc.
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Final Fantasy
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(Original post by whatsthenews)
But you can't assume that everyone else is prescribed these drugs by their GP and they certainly don't know that you are, so the implication is that they go out and buy benzodiazepines or strong painkillers to take for their anxiety and that that is a safe and sensible thing to do. If you need them for pain then so be it, but they are highly addictive and shouldn't generally be taken together especially if someone is going to drive or operate machinery. Even taken separately they can impair judgenment and slow reactions etc.
What are you on about lol how is any of that relevant. I said I take them - it's been a success story for me as per thread. You need to chill mate and get back on topic instead of derailing it.

(Original post by Anonymous)
good luck with the SSRIs, i have been prescribed drugs but been hesitant due to their side effects, but hopefully it goes well for you
I've had bad experiences with SSRIs in the past, but there's another type call Mirtazapine which worked really great. It helped stop panic attacks after a few weeks.
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whatsthenews
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(Original post by Final Fantasy)
What are you on about lol how is any of that relevant. I said I take them - it's been a success story for me as per thread. You need to chill mate and get back on topic instead of derailing it..
You said
"Pop a benzo or a strong painkiller"
You say you take them for chronic muscle spasm and skeletal pain, but a doctor would never prescribe strong pain killers for anxiety and it would be very rare nowadays that a GP would prescribe Benzodiazepines for anxiety because of their addictive properties and side effects.
You used the slang or street name for benzodiazepines rather than the correct medical term or the name of the drug is worrying too.
Benzodiazepine and stronger pain killers (eg codeine) abuse(ie when not prescribed by a doctor and for recreational purposes) poses risks of dependence, withdrawal and other long-term effects.
If someone suffers from anxiety to a degree that it's interfering with their relationships, work or normal leisure activity etc then they need to see a doctor and try and get some counselling. Sometimes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can help.Other things to try apart from medication that the doctor might prescribe are mindfullness and yoga. Anxiety is a horrible thing. I know as I suffer from it and it's got worse as I've got older. All GP's have done is prescribe anti-depressants, which as you say aren't without side effects and though not classified as addictive, can lead to dependance and do have withdrawal symptoms. They might help with the anxiety and can be a "life-saver" in reducing symptoms of anxiety, but they don't deal with the underlying cause or help people to manage the anxiety. Recently after an even triggered very bad anxiety I was offered counselling, but there was a 12 week wait! I eventually saw a counsellor privately for 6 visits over 6 weeks.They used Gestalt which i designed to focus on the "here and now" rather than allowing your mind to be focused on "what if" that might be years down the line and might never happen! Gestalt also helps people to start living their life again ie resumimg and focusing on their usual activities. It might also be helpful to contact MIND or a student counsellor at the University.
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TheAnxiousSloth
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(Original post by Anonymous)
sounds exactly what I am experiencing. I've been having chest pain throat pain crazy heart rate and vertigo to the point where I was rushed to A&E twice to find absolutely nothing. gp then diagnozed me with generalised anxiety disorder and it still gives me pains. it sucks i understand your pain, but im trying to stay off those type of drugs because of their side effects... :confused: glad to know you're doing well though keep it up!
You don't need to worry about side-effects with beta-blocker tablets. They are not addictive and they don't alter the chemistry of your brain at all. All they do is stop the effects of adrenaline.
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TheAnxiousSloth
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(Original post by WoodyMKC)
I've been on beta blockers for ages and I still get this stuff :lol: What dosage are you on per day?
I take 40mg tablets and can have up to three per day depending on how anxious I feel. I'm on propanalol if that helps? They work wonders for me
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(Original post by Final Fantasy)
Pop a benzo or a strong painkiller and it goes away for me.
Both of which are highly addictive narcotics - very irresponsible post from someone who should know better.
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It's****ingWOODY
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(Original post by LeCroissant)
I take 40mg tablets and can have up to three per day depending on how anxious I feel. I'm on propanalol if that helps? They work wonders for me
I'm on propranolol also, two 40mg tablets a day as a base dose but I can take more as needed. When I take more it does help a bit and I'm reluctant to actually increase the dose permanently because of the side effects.
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whatsthenews
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(Original post by LeCroissant)
You don't need to worry about side-effects with beta-blocker tablets. They are not addictive and they don't alter the chemistry of your brain at all. All they do is stop the effects of adrenaline.
That's not strictly true. Beta blockers are used to manage high BP and can cause angina,heart block (where the top chambers of the heart beat very slowly but the impulses can't get through to the lower chambers) low BP, dizziness, burred vision. dry mouth, problems concentrating and tiredness/fatigue. Over time you will get used to having them in your system to control anxiety. Then you'll need more and then you can't do without them. That may not be addiction, but it's dependance
MOST IMPORTANTLY- they are contra-indicated in Asthma because blocking the beta receptor sites leads to bronchospasm ( constriction of the tubes that the oxygen passes through inside the lungs) and in diabetics they can mask the signs of low blood sugar. Tell you what for a group of what I would think are supposed to be moderately intelligent people you must never read the patient infornation leaflet in the box or lookup the drugs you're taking except on sites that are about recreational drug use.
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killercars
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(Original post by LeCroissant)
You don't need to worry about side-effects with beta-blocker tablets. They are not addictive and they don't alter the chemistry of your brain at all. All they do is stop the effects of adrenaline.
For a lot of people, beta-blockers have no side-effects. However, you can actually become dependant on them. I was on 25mg and moved up to 50mg. They make me very achey and tired and depressed, and when I went back down to 25mg my anxiety went through the roof. They can have withdrawal effects in some cases and, though they are just beta-blockers, they shouldn't be taken as lightly as you say. I thought the same as you before though.
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TheAnxiousSloth
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(Original post by whatsthenews)
That's not strictly true. Beta blockers are used to manage high BP and can cause angina,heart block (where the top chambers of the heart beat very slowly but the impulses can't get through to the lower chambers) low BP, dizziness, burred vision. dry mouth, problems concentrating and tiredness/fatigue. Over time you will get used to having them in your system to control anxiety. Then you'll need more and then you can't do without them. That may not be addiction, but it's dependance
MOST IMPORTANTLY- they are contra-indicated in Asthma because blocking the beta receptor sites leads to bronchospasm ( constriction of the tubes that the oxygen passes through inside the lungs) and in diabetics they can mask the signs of low blood sugar. Tell you what for a group of what I would think are supposed to be moderately intelligent people you must never read the patient infornation leaflet in the box or lookup the drugs you're taking except on sites that are about recreational drug use.
I'm not athsmatic or diabetic so the latter side effects are irrelevant to me. I used to experience dizziness, blurred vision, dry mouth etc on a daily basis before taking these tablets but now I don't.
Also, I have read the patient leaflet but the side effects you have brought up only effect around 1 in 100 people.
Maybe in the future, I'll become dependant on them like you said but hopefully I'll be able to have CBT before then. Mental health services are terrible these days due to government cuts so drugs are the only thing I can rely on.
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Final Fantasy
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(Original post by whatsthenews)
You said
"Pop a benzo or a strong painkiller"
You say you take them for chronic muscle spasm and skeletal pain, but a doctor would never prescribe strong pain killers for anxiety and it would be very rare nowadays that a GP would prescribe Benzodiazepines for anxiety because of their addictive properties and side effects.
You used the slang or street name for benzodiazepines rather than the correct medical term or the name of the drug is worrying too.
Benzodiazepine and stronger pain killers (eg codeine) abuse(ie when not prescribed by a doctor and for recreational purposes) poses risks of dependence, withdrawal and other long-term effects.
If someone suffers from anxiety to a degree that it's interfering with their relationships, work or normal leisure activity etc then they need to see a doctor and try and get some counselling. Sometimes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can help.Other things to try apart from medication that the doctor might prescribe are mindfullness and yoga. Anxiety is a horrible thing. I know as I suffer from it and it's got worse as I've got older. All GP's have done is prescribe anti-depressants, which as you say aren't without side effects and though not classified as addictive, can lead to dependance and do have withdrawal symptoms. They might help with the anxiety and can be a "life-saver" in reducing symptoms of anxiety, but they don't deal with the underlying cause or help people to manage the anxiety. Recently after an even triggered very bad anxiety I was offered counselling, but there was a 12 week wait! I eventually saw a counsellor privately for 6 visits over 6 weeks.They used Gestalt which i designed to focus on the "here and now" rather than allowing your mind to be focused on "what if" that might be years down the line and might never happen! Gestalt also helps people to start living their life again ie resumimg and focusing on their usual activities. It might also be helpful to contact MIND or a student counsellor at the University.
I've tried everything you can think of over the years including therapy and they made the situation worse. I'm given nitrazepam, diazepam, DHC and some other medications like pregabalin, omeprazole and mirtazapine. They are not prescribed lightly and I agree they are not normally prescribed long term anymore. Also I finished university many years ago - I work for a living now and have my own healthcare cover. I'm not gonna suddenly stop taking them - you need to understand that it's not just anxiety I actually have some lifelong conditions and my body reacts badly to other medications. And it's not just GP also paychiatrist and it would be very irresponsible and dangerous to take your advice like that - I'd easily have a seizure.

I refer to them as benzos that's the shorthand usage as far as I'm aware. There is absolutely no abuse, its prescribed and taken as directed.

I've been looking into mindfulness lately.
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