Get a psychological profile on anyone - identify traits and risks of mental illness. (Get started for free)

How can I manage and overcome the overwhelming feeling of health anxiety that consumes my daily life?

Health anxiety can affect anyone, regardless of age or health status, and is estimated to affect around 4-5% of the general population.

The American Psychiatric Association recognizes health anxiety as an official psychiatric disorder, known as illness anxiety disorder.

Health anxiety can lead to unnecessary medical tests and procedures, with one study suggesting that up to 75% of health anxiety patients undergo unnecessary medical investigations.

The constant need for reassurance from others can be a major symptom of health anxiety, with some people seeking constant medical check-ups or reassurance from family and friends.

Research suggests that people with health anxiety are more likely to have a family history of anxiety disorders, suggesting a potential genetic component.

Health anxiety can lead to avoidance behaviors, such as avoiding medical appointments or social events, due to fear of illness or symptom exacerbation.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most effective treatment for health anxiety, with studies showing significant reductions in anxiety symptoms after treatment.

Health anxiety can be triggered by factors such as stress, major life changes, or past traumatic experiences, which can exacerbate worries about health.

People with health anxiety are more likely to engage in maladaptive coping mechanisms, such as excessive internet searching or seeking reassurance from others.

The digital age has facilitated health anxiety, with the ease of self-diagnosis and access to medical information online contributing to increased worry and preoccupation.

Paradoxically, people with health anxiety often have a higher-than-average attention to bodily sensations, which can amplify anxiety symptoms.

Health anxiety can lead to physical symptoms, such as headaches, muscle tension, and gastrointestinal issues, which can further exacerbate anxiety.

Health anxiety can lead to social isolation, with people avoiding social situations or relationships due to fear of illness or symptom exacerbation.

People with health anxiety often have a heightened awareness of bodily sensations, which can lead to misattribution of normal bodily sensations to serious illness.

Get a psychological profile on anyone - identify traits and risks of mental illness. (Get started for free)

Related

Sources