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  • Writer's pictureKyle Ross

How to Stop Health Anxiety Symptoms



symptoms of health anxiety

Introduction:


Health anxiety, also known as hypochondria, can cast a shadow over daily life, leading to unnecessary stress and impaired well-being. Whether you’re struggling with health anxiety, or know of someone who is, this article will dive into effective strategies you can use to learn the symptoms of health anxiety and more importantly, how to stop the symptoms of health anxiety. Want to learn what the symptoms of health anxiety are? Click HERE


By adopting a comprehensive approach that incorporates Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), hypnotherapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and the Acer Technique, you can learn to effectively manage and overcome health anxiety symptoms on their own with some time and effort. But first, its important to know what we're dealing with.


Understanding Health Anxiety:


Health anxiety is characterised by excessive worry about one's health, often accompanied by frequent doctor visits and obsessive research on medical conditions. Health anxiety can manifest from a number of causes, however it almost always is caused by some kind of underlying fear or emotion. Recognising the signs and symptoms of health anxiety is the first step towards reclaiming control over one's thoughts and emotions.


Below i'll share with you some solid techniques you can use to regain your control! Buckle up.


Identify your triggers:


What is a trigger? A trigger is an unconscious thought process. It something that happens so fast it seems to happen on autopilot. And thats because it does. If you can bring something out from the unconscious, into the conscious, you can change it for the better.


Triggers for health anxiety can vary from minor physical symptoms to alarming health-related news or personal experiences. By identifying these triggers, you can develop strategies to respond calmly and rationally, rather than succumbing to anxious thoughts and behaviours.


You may be triggered by seeing something medically related, or perhaps you experience physical symptoms and start spiralling convinced you’re seriously ill convinced things are coming to an end. Whatever it is, learning how to identify a trigger as a trigger is a step towards reclaiming your power. 


Think about it like this. Your trigger, has anchored or glued itself to an undesirable emotion, lets say fear. This could be rooted in a fear of death. So when you experience your trigger, your mind and body experiences the attached emotion to death. It doesnt have to mean this, it can mean something entirely different.


Even just writing this out and understanding your trigger as a trigger can be an effective step towards overcoming this fear and thus learning how to stop health anxiety symptoms.


Harnessing NLP Techniques:


NLP offers a wealth of techniques for reframing negative thoughts and behaviours associated with health anxiety, and is a powerful approach on learning how to stop health anxiety. There is one technique I can share with you here, and that is reframing. 


Taking a page out of the NLP handbook. It says that every individual has their own model of the world. And this model is made up of thoughts, pictures, sounds, emotions ect. 

Once you’ve identified your trigger, think, what is it that I'm experiencing. Is it a picture of me being in hospital, or is it a pestering, unpleasant thought. Once you’ve identified this, you can change this to anything else you want. 


An example of this could be changing an unpleasant picture of you being ill, into a framed picture with some wacky music. This is something I’ve personally used, and it takes the seriousness out of that mental image. 


It may help if you write them down and sit in a quiet space. Or faster yet, working with a NLP therapist will have you feeling different in no time.


If all this is confusing you, don't worry. It's not the easiest thing to grasp. If you're looking for an easier, faster way to resolve health anxiety, this is something I personally offer. To find out more, click HERE


This technique is perfect for a ‘mild’ case of health anxiety. Cases rooted in deeper trauma may take a bit more than just visualisation and reframing to resolve it. 


Embracing Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)


CBT focuses on identifying and challenging maladaptive thought patterns associated with health anxiety. By practicing techniques such as thought challenging and behavioural experiments, individuals can learn to confront their fears and develop more balanced perspectives on their health, thus learning how to stop health anxiety symptoms.


Becoming accustomed to your fears in a way where you meet your fears, opposed to your fears controlling you is a powerful way to overcome them. Its a bit like the monster under the bed. 


You may have had this as a kid, being scared of a monster under the bed. It’s not until you have a good look and realise there is no monster, or see that its just a teddy bear, that you stop being scared. 


Writing down your thought process, and seeing it as a thought process, can really help some people break that health anxiety loop and learn how to stop health anxiety symptoms.


Try out this step by step process: 


  • Identify the Fear: Start by clearly identifying the fear you want to overcome.

  • Create a Fear Hierarchy: Once you've identified the fear, create a fear hierarchy, ranking situations related to the fear from least to most anxiety-provoking.

  • Exposure: Begin with the least anxiety-provoking situation from your fear hierarchy. Expose yourself to this situation repeatedly until your anxiety decreases significantly. 

  • Rinse & Repeat: Once you begin to become accustomed to the fear, and to familiarise yourself with it, you very well may begin to see, feel, and think differently about the whole situation. 


Introducing the Acer Technique:


The Acer Technique, derived from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), encourages individuals to accept their anxious thoughts and feelings without judgment while committing to actions aligned with their values.


One of the ways to combat how to stop health anxiety on your own is the following strategy. The ACER technique: Acceptance, Challenging, Embracing, and Repeating.


Firstly, acceptance involves acknowledging anxious thoughts as just thoughts, not necessarily indicative of reality. 


By accepting these thoughts without resistance, individuals can reduce the power of their anxiety. Do not overlook this step. There is something profoundly liberating about accepting what is happening. Our natural instinct is to avoid pain, however accepting worry or fear and meeting it is at is, is one of the most effective ways to regain power over the emotion. 


Next, challenging involves reframing negative thoughts. For example, questioning whether physical symptoms truly indicate a serious health issue or are simply manifestations of anxiety can help shift perspective.


Embracing involves fully acknowledging and accepting the reality of the situation, which can diminish the anxiety's hold. Be sure to write down your values and connect with those and then to behave in alignment with those values. A good one is connecting with feeling strong. If one feels strong, then illness doesn’t hold as much power. 


Finally, repeating this process as needed reinforces healthier thought patterns and diminishes anxiety over time, and learning how to deal with health anxiety. This is by no means my method and I claim no responsibility of it, if you’d like to purchase this book, there is a link to it HERE


Using Mindfulness to Untangle Thoughts from Emotions:


Another valuable approach to managing health anxiety is mindfulness. By practicing mindfulness and meditation, individuals can disentangle their emotions from their thoughts. Mindfulness encourages observing thoughts without judgment or attachment, allowing individuals to detach from the cycle of anxiety. It's like stepping off a spinning carousel of health anxiety. Through mindfulness, individuals can learn to recognise anxious thoughts without immediately succumbing to panic, thus breaking the link between symptoms and overwhelming emotions. This detachment from thoughts fosters a sense of control and reduces the grip of health anxiety over one's life and learn how to stop health anxiety symptoms.


Building a Strong Support Network:


Seeking support from friends, family, or a therapist can provide invaluable encouragement and understanding on the journey to overcoming health anxiety. Support groups and online communities can also offer a sense of belonging and validation, reminding individuals that they are not alone in their struggles. If you’d like to claim your FREE consultation with a health anxiety specialist, click HERE. Or to find out more info, get in touch HERE

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