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Health anxiety making me feel exhausted and hopeless. 

Community Member
Hi, I’m new to forums. Like many of you I have been suffering with health anxiety for many years. I have had many significant episodes where I have been debilitated for long periods, obsessing over symptoms, seeking reassurance, multiple tests and doctors/ hospital visits. I am on AD which helps and have seen numerous psychologists and have done CBT, mindfulness training etc and have Learnt that my health anxiety is triggered by stress. I have long periods of being “normal” but if I have what I consider an abnormal bodily sensation for a period of time eg I have chest wall pain at the moment, my mind goes into anxiety overdrive and no matter how rational I try to be, I keep coming back to compulsively checking that symptom, with associated negative thoughts.The problem is that I am EXHAUSTED by all of this and cannot see an end in sight to these constant periods of anxiety. As I get older (I am now 50), more everyday stresses seem to be occurring and I don't see how I am going to be able to cope. I am super worried that if and when I do get diagnosed with something I will not be able to cope and will go insane. The emotional pain is becoming severe and sometimes I think that if I was diagnosed with something, it would be easier to opt out. All of these thoughts are going around my head. I have plenty of support, but like many don’t want to continually burden other people. I’m not really expecting an answer from this post. I just thought it might help if I wrote it all down. So thanks for listening..
6 Replies 6

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi Belle,

I hope it helped to get this off your chest, and i am sorry you have been experiencing this.

i am glad you have sought help, but are you seeing a psychologist consistently? sometimes it can take a number of visits and many months to get somewhere with therapy. it is not a one-stop-shop. Anxiety/OCD has to be retrained with therapy and it can take time. For me, seeing a psychologist consistently really helped me to the point where i

Community Champion
Community Champion

Sorry, accidentally entered!!!

...THE point where i do not experience it anymore.

i hope things improve soon and i am here if you need,

jaz xx


Hi there, Belle 07!

Thank you for joining us on the Forums, we are very grateful for your brave post, and we feel that many of the community members will resonate with what you have described!

Health anxiety is quickly become one of the most common forms of anxiety disorder alongside Social Anxiety. It is quite understandable to face into this distress at different points in life - health and illness dictate just about everything we can expect to be and do in life. It is a serious subject, and it is worth investing resources to!

That said, when our concern robs us of vitality, instead of ensuring it, it is deeply frustrating, and leads to a never-ending feedback loop.
A form of mindfulness that is very specific but perhaps effective is that of sensory feedback. Using mindfulness meditations with hands in cool water, or brushing different materials against the skin, etc. This can allow us to form a feedback loop in which we can see that most of the sensations in the body, even some of the painful or disconcerting ones, is just awareness and information being passed around the body - especially as we age and, sadly, some pains can simply be the body not being very happy with us anymore, and not signs of anything especially dangerous. 
Talking to your GP about some of your local therapy practice groups could be useful! and of course if you would like any community referrals specific to your area, please feel free to reach out to us here. You can call 1300 22 4636 or start a webchat by clicking here

Thank you again for your courage in sharing, and for your choice to join us!

Take care,

Sophie M.

Thanks for your reply. I’m feeling at my lowest ebb this morning. Just found out I have to have a CT To rule out lung cancer and my anxiety is out of control. I don’t know what symptoms are real or not anymore, if I’m imagining them or if I really need tests, I can’t eat or sleep and am continually crying. I’ve seen so many psychologists and tried so many things but nothing works to take away this mental torture when I’m feeling like this. I just want someone to help me but I know that no one can give me the reassurances I need.

Community Member
Thanks Jaz for your thoughts. I am in crisis at the moment at I just found out I need a CT to rule out lung cancer. I can’t cope. I’m a blubbering mess and I don’t know what to do. I am seeing my GP this morning.

I know this is stressful but the best you can do is have the test and get the results and move forward from there.

I guess the issue is that this stress can create symptoms, which becomes a feedback loop. I'm not sure what else to suggest but I hope you can find a way forward.