Health anxiety is a condition where a person becomes excessively worried about their health, to the point where it begins to interfere with their daily life. While many treatments are available for this, hypnotherapy has been shown to be an effective option. In this article, we will look at health anxiety, illness anxiety disorder and how hypnotherapy can help you.
What is health anxiety and what are the symptoms?
Health anxiety is a condition where a person becomes excessively worried about their health. This can manifest as excessive worry about having a serious illness, fear of dying, or concern about the health of loved ones. The symptoms can vary from person to person, but often include intrusive thoughts, excessive worrying, and difficulty relaxing.
Health anxiety can often lead to avoidance behaviours, such as avoiding doctors or health-related information. Health anxiety symptoms include the following:
– Excessive worry about health
– Intrusive thoughts
– Worrying about loved ones’ health
– Difficulty relaxing
– Avoidance behaviours
Physical health anxiety symptoms
People with health anxiety often experience physical symptoms, such as a racing heart, shortness of breath, or dizziness. This is because the body reacts to the stress of worrying about health by releasing adrenaline. These physical symptoms can be very distressing and can often lead to further worry and anxiety.
While it can be distressing, it does not usually interfere with daily life. However, for those with illness anxiety disorder, the obsession with health can lead to significant impairment.
What are some of the treatments for health anxiety?
There are many different treatments for health anxiety, including therapy, medication, and self-care. The most effective treatment is usually therapy.
Therapy for health anxiety can include cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), hypnotherapy, or exposure therapy. CBT is a type of therapy that helps you to change the way you think about and react to your thoughts and feelings. Hypnotherapy is a type of therapy that uses hypnosis to help you relax and explore the root of your anxiety. Exposure therapy involves gradually exposing yourself to the things that you fear most. This can help you learn that the things you fear are not as bad as you thought.
If you are struggling with health anxiety, it is important to see a mental health professional who can help you find the best treatment for you. Treating health anxiety with hypnosis is a very effective long-term solution that not only helps with the way that your mind works but also being able to overcome anxiety issues yourself.
What is illness anxiety disorder?
Illness anxiety disorder (IAD), formerly known as hypochondria, is one of the anxiety disorders where a person becomes excessively worried about their health, despite there being no medical evidence to support their concerns. People with IAD may believe that they have a serious illness, or are at risk of developing one, even when there is no evidence to support this belief. As well as causing distress and anxiety, IAD can also lead to significant disruption to a person’s life, as they may avoid activities or places that they believe could put them at risk of becoming ill.
People with illness anxiety disorder often have multiple health concerns and go to great lengths to seek reassurance about their health. They may frequently visit doctors, undergo numerous tests, or research their symptoms online. Worrying about the possibility of experiencing or having a severe illness can take over the lives of some people with health anxiety disorders.
Illness anxiety disorder is a serious condition that can be debilitating for sufferers. It is estimated to affect 1-2% of the population and is more common in women than men. If you have a serious medical condition that needs to be looked at then you need to have that looked at of course. The issue is that health-related anxiety can give you physical sensations as if you had the issue when really you don’t.
Symptoms of illness anxiety disorder include:
– Excessive worry about health
– No medical evidence to support concerns
– May believe they have a serious illness
– Disruption to daily life
– Multiple health concerns
– Constantly seeking reassurance
Treatments for health anxiety and illness anxiety disorder often involve psychological therapies, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) or exposure therapy. These therapies can be effective in helping people to manage their anxiety and learn how to cope with their fears. However, not everyone responds well to these treatments. For those who do not, medication may be prescribed. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are commonly used to treat health anxiety and illness anxiety disorder.
Where does it all come from?
People can develop these issues for a number of different reasons. Some people may have had a serious childhood illness which has left them with a fear of becoming ill themselves. Others may have experienced a health scare in early or middle adulthood, which has led to them becoming fearful of their health.
Sometimes it comes from being very ill during early or middle adulthood. The shock to the body from being so ill can leave a lasting impression which then turns into fear.
Many people with health anxiety develop their fears after spending time researching their symptoms online. This can be a dangerous thing to do, as it can lead to people becoming unnecessarily worried about their health. It is important to remember that not everything you read on the internet is accurate and that it is best to speak to a healthcare professional if you are concerned about your health.
How hypnotherapy can be used to treat health anxiety
Hypnotherapy is a treatment option that has been shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of health anxiety. In hypnotherapy, a therapist will help you to relax and enter a state of trance. In this state, you will be more open to suggestion and will be able to explore the root of your health anxiety. Often, health anxiety is caused by negative thoughts and beliefs about health. Hypnotherapy can help you to challenge these thoughts and replace them with more positive ones.
If you are struggling with health anxiety, hypnotherapy may be a good option for you in treating health anxiety. Hypnotherapy is a highly effective solution for many other anxiety disorders. If you are having health worries around having a serious illness for instance, hypnotherapy can help you to feel and think in a more positive way.
The benefits of hypnotherapy for health anxiety
Some of the benefits of using hypnotherapy for health anxiety disorders include:
- Hypnotherapy can help you to relax and manage your anxiety.
- It can help you to explore the root of your health anxiety and identify any negative thoughts or beliefs that may be causing your anxiety.
- Hypnotherapy can help you to replace these negative thoughts with more positive ones, which will help to reduce your symptoms of anxiety.
- Hypnotherapy is a highly effective treatment for many other anxiety disorders.
How to find a hypnotherapist who can help with health anxiety
People with health anxiety can feel like their physical symptoms are real, that they have a medical condition and that they need medical tests in order to prove that their worries are true. They will make numerous medical appointments in order to prove to the doctors, their family or friends that they have a real medical condition.
Whilst you may feel the physical sensations that you experience, they may not be really happening. Your mind may be playing tricks on you as it does with all mental disorders. Often people are experiencing normal body sensations but their mental disorders twist what is happening to tell you that their own health is at risk.
Hypnotherapy can help to change the way that your mind works to alleviate these symptoms and free it up to think about more positive things. If you are interested in finding out more about how hypnotherapy can help please contact The Leeds Hypnotherapist by tapping or clicking here.