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Ask Dr. Z Your Own Question

Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 10643
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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hello, I am a 22 year old male and i jusOKMH1026217

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hello, I am a 22 year old male and i just can't get over my health, I went to the er yesterday and I want to go again everything for the most part checks out I just think they are missing something


Dr. Z :

Hello I believe I can help you with your concern

Dr. Z :

I am sorry that you have been experiencing these symptoms, I can imagine how distressing this must be for you

Dr. Z :

I would like to ask you a few questions to get some more information, so that I can better assist you

Dr. Z :

May I ask, for how long have you been having these health related thoughts for?

Dr. Z :

Also you mentioned that you tried therapy, for how long were you in therapy for and did you feel that it was not effective?

Customer:

Probably for years maybe even since childhood id been thinking t but it really took off in h.s., I do have therapy because I do get full blown panic attacks which have been bad lately so I'm just starting that back up

Dr. Z :

Would you say that you research a lot about health related disorders on the internet too?

Dr. Z :

Almost in a compulsive fashion sometimes?

Customer:

About my health? yes I guess I'm starting to realize that I went to er yesterday everything checked out yet i felt good then like tonight I search the internet looking for things they missed

Dr. Z :

Okay, I think you definitely have Health Anxiety, but I also think this may be so severe because of how long you have had it that this can be considered a possible Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), which is a subtype of anxiety as well

Customer:

Great thanks you I will look into this. I knew I had anxiety but really am now realizing how I obsess over it thank you

Dr. Z :

Typically the best treatment for this level of anxiety is the use of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). CBT has a premise that your symptoms are caused by negative thoughts, so if we change your thought process to be more positive and objective as well, then your symptoms will lessen. Also the use of an SSRI antidepressant (e.g. Lexapro, Zoloft, Luvox, Paxil, Prozac, and Celex) are also warranted as well and have been shown to be effective treating Anxiety and OCD.

Dr. Z :

Well I would like to recommend a couple good treatment books for you too, give me one second to get them for you

Dr. Z :

I think these treatment books will help you as well and give you some good CBT techniques to help treat your Obsessive thoughts over your health. Also this technique may help as well

Dr. Z :

So this link may help you, it contains a technique I use with patients called a thought record. It will help you keep track of any negative thoughts you have. You put the trigger for your health anxiety, the emotion intensity and the intensity of the negative thought associated with that health anxiety trigger. Then you put down how you responded (e.g. panic attack, obsessive compulsive behavior, etc…), what would be an alternative and more rational response to this health anxiety trigger. And then you re-rate your original negative belief.

Dr. Z :

In addition, these two worksheets are very good at helping lessen your symptoms. It can help you focus on the big picture and the objective/positive thoughts and outcomes.

Dr. Z :

Do you have any questions or concerns?

Customer:

wow that is a lot of information, but its good Ive always been working on my panic attacks just to stay calm by breathing but have never really worked on my obssesive thoughts thank you very much and i will look into all this information.

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