Online Treatment for Illness Anxiety Disorder
There are many ways anxiety, stress, trauma may manifest in our bodies. The most common way I see is through health anxiety, also called Illness Anxiety Disorder, where people worry about getting an illness. People with health anxiety often go to the worst-case scenario, as most people with anxiety also do. They worry about the things that could occur should they get a disease.
“What would happen to my family if I died?”
Many highly sensitive people may feel their body sensitivities stronger in times of stress, and it manifests into illness anxiety. With the media inundating us with news stories using pressured dramatic speech, alarming headlines, and sensationalized violence and illness, it can easily overwhelm us. Anxiety is genuine and can resent as a lump in the throat, sighing, heart racing, numbness, and tingling. It can exacerbate physical symptoms of headaches, migraines, and worsen tremors and other neurological conditions. The thoughts of I can’t let anything happen to my new baby go into what would she do without me.
Signs of Illness Anxiety Disorder
- Thinking a lot about having or getting a severe illness
- Not many severe physical symptoms, but the worry is still there
- The fear is disproportionate to the actual risk of the disease, like a healthy athlete worried about dying of emphysema
- There is a generally high level of anxiety about health
- Feeling easily alarmed or frightened about your health status
- Some people go to doctors a lot and need tests to ensure they are healthy
- While some people avoid doctors, offices, and hospitals altogether
How is Illness Anxiety Disorder Treated?
Treatment for health anxiety includes cognitive behavioral therapy, EMDR, or RRT for past health-related trauma, and some people take medications for this type of stress. Many people with illness anxiety, especially the care-avoidant kind, choose telepsychiatry as an option for discrete, unintrusive way to get mental health care.
Schedule an Appointment
If you would like to give telepsychiatry a try for treatment of health anxiety, schedule an appointment online with Allison Sikorsky.