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  • Writer's pictureKyle Ross

Whats the Root Cause of Health Anxiety?

hypnotherapy health anxiety

Understanding the 'Root Cause' of Health Anxiety:

In today's blog I'll be talking about whats the possible root causes of health anxiety.

To be completely honest, it is impossible for me to say exactly what causes health anxiety.

It can be from a range of psychological emotional and even physiological factors, and everyone 'does' health anxiety differently.

However, what I will do in this blog is I'll break down some of the possible causes so if you or someone you know is struggling with health anxiety then this blog will be perfect for you to gain some insight and some clarity.

Losing Control:

So one of the most common causes of this is actually the fear of losing control over ones own self or wellbeing.

This can happen from a traumatic event from when you was a child or even witnessing someone in your family or someone that's close to you experience some kind of illness or some kind of traumatic health experience.

The mind likes to have that degree of control and once it's feels like it loses that degree of control that can really set off the the anxiety response and can bring in those feelings of health anxiety and those symptoms of health anxiety

Cognitive Distortion:

This is just a fancy way of saying that people catastrophise or over-generalise their symptoms.

Basically this is where you get caught up in the sort of health anxiety loop as I like to call it.

So a great example is where someone experiences let's say, a minor bodily sensation and then catastrophises that this now means they are seriously ill or that they are going to die, and just come to the worst conclusion possible.

That piece of information or the symptoms the bodily Sensation itself these distorted thoughts alone can exacerbate anxiety and create what I like to call false symptoms - which are basically like creating your own symptoms with your mind.

Past trauma or negative medical experiences:

Having a traumatic medical event happen can significantly change the way one perceives their own relationship to their health and their health anxiety.

Soem examples of this could look like; serious illnesses or medical procedures, negative encounters with healthcare professionals could also create a distrust between diagnoses and then also this creates more anxiety due to there being more uncertainty.

If you feel like you can't go to the doctors because they're untrustworthy or they just gonna not help you at all then that can also add to the anxieties around your health, due to there being no solution in sight.

Existential realisation of the mortality of life:

When someone experiences health anxiety this can be due to fear and touching that realisation and the reality of life.

Touching that life and birth death cycle and usually this creates a sense of panic when someone feels that they are out of control of this.

This can send people to spiral about the fear of their death and the inability to control this.

Someone may become obsessed with their health and their well-being in a attempt to try and control this this truth and reality.

Stress and lifestyle factors:

I'm going to bit back to the basics here, however I do feel like there is a notable mentioned here because if you are leaving an unhealthy lifestyle and poor coping strategies and experiencing stress then this can result in experiencing health anxiety.

One of the main reasons for this is actually because when you are stressed you actually suppress the immune systems natural ability to heal and you become more susceptible to illnesses which means you become more susceptible to experiencing negative physical symptoms, which can then create more awareness around your anxiety or your anxiety around your health - which can then create that health anxiety loop I keep talking about.

Internet and Media influence:

I'm sure you know that there is what seems like an infinite amount of information on the internet.

So when someone experiences a symptom it's so easy nowadays to Google it and to be quite honest this kind of information just wasn't accessible 20 years ago.

So when you're experiencing a symptom which let's just say it's a mild symptom and there's not actually anything serious it's very easy to Google that and then just to assume the worst.

It's very easy to come to the conclusion that you have a serious illness from experiencing the symptoms so having constant exposure to this kind of information or even content online can then lead to someone being obsessed with their own health and can contribute to that health heightened sense of anxiety around your own health.

Personality Traits:

Believe it or not there's certain types of personality traits that predispose people to having more anxiety around health.

Traits like perfectionism, neuroticism, and someone who excessively in constantly worries are traits of someone who may experience health anxiety in their lifetime.

This is because these thoughts can generally amplify feelings of vulnerability and exacerbate feelings of concern for one's own health and well-being.

Seeking Help?

Here it is, seven main causes for health anxiety I hope this blog has provided you with some clarity.

If you do know someone who has experiencing health anxiety or you are currently experiencing health anxiety then I work with people who have health anxiety.

If you'd like to book in a consultation call, we can go over and discuss your current situation and provide you with the peace and clarity that you truly need.

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