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How can I over come hypochondria and cardiophobia? I have

had a ct scan, mri...
How can I over come hypochondria and cardiophobia? I have had a ct scan, mri, two ekgs in 8 mths a echo of my heart my bp is 98/64 I am in the right weight. I just fear death so bad. I lost my husband in 2005 very quickly and I am afraid of leaving my teenage boys I do have a will for them and everything is in place. My grandma on my moms side lived to 96 and my grandpa on my dads side lives to 95. As you can see I have asked many questions on here. I take my bp 10 times a day. I am bipolar so ssris are hard for me to take because I go straight to mania.....I am not suicidal at all I just would like to have my life back and fill it with joy not worry all the time. Thank u
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Answered in 18 minutes by:
8/23/2012
TherapistMarryAnn
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5,856
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Phobias are common and are one of the easiest things to treat in therapy. Anxiety and panic are simply your body reacting to your thoughts. And if your thoughts are about something you fear, then your body is going to show symptoms. The symptoms then in turn make you feel upset which supports your fears. It is a cycle that can be broken with therapy, medications (if needed) and self help.

When you are anxious, your thoughts are causing your mind to think your in danger. Your body reacts by releasing adrenaline into your system. Adrenaline causes the symptoms you feel, including panic and anxiety. It is much like after you have had a bad scare like a car accident. Your body releases the adrenaline and you feel unreal, your legs turn to jelly, you have trouble thinking and your body may feel it's tingling. You just don't notice it as much because your focus is on what is going on around you. Except with anxiety, there is no focus. The only thing you have to focus on is how you feel. And the focus for you now is dying.

It may not feel like it, but the anxiety does subside. The adrenaline in your system does deplete and needs time to replenish. But because your thoughts are probably always on alert, so is your body. This may be why you always feel anxious.

Fear of death can be difficult because there are no easy answers to your fear. Everyone at some level fears death because no one knows for sure when they will die and how. But you can learn to reduce your anxiety about death and feel more calm about it.

Medications are helpful to ease the symptoms but they vary in their effectiveness. Each person has their own body chemistry and what works for one may not work for another. Also, once you take medication for a while, your body becomes accustomed to it and you either need an increase in dosage or you need to try a new medication.

You can also try therapy. In therapy, you learn to pay attention to what you are thinking to make yourself anxious. The therapist then can help you change your thoughts and therefore how your body reacts to your thoughts. You also can learn about how to let yourself float through your anxiety thereby gaining more control over how you feel. When a panic or anxiety come on, you allow it to flow over you without tensing or panicking in response. This makes the panic and anxiety reduce or go away faster. To find a therapist, talk to your doctor about a referral. Or you can search on line at http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/.

You can also help yourself at home. There are numerous resources to help you learn more about anxiety. Here are some to get you started:

The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook by Edmund Bourne is excellent for any fears. It is self help and contains everything from supplements to relaxation techniques.

The Cognitive Behavioral Workbook for Anxiety: A Step-by-Step Program by Bill Knaus Ed.D. and Jon Carlson Psy.D. Ed.D.

From Panic to Power: Proven Techniques to Calm Your Anxieties, Conquer Your Fears, and Put You in Control of Your Life by Lucinda Bassett

http://helpguide.org/mental/anxiety_types_symptoms_treatment.htm

You can find these books on Amazon.com or your local library may have them for you.

You can be assured that with some treatment and self help, you will be able to greatly reduce or even eliminate your anxiety.

I hope this has helped you,
Kate

TherapistMarryAnn
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5,856
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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