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Anxiety: Heart Fear
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tsmtihey posted:
Hello there I am just wondering if anyone has any information regarding having a heart fear or Somatization Anxiety. Right now I am having a small panic attack again worried about my heart and that I am having a heart attack. I have been having these feelings on and off since yesterday, and went to the doctor as well who did some basic tests. He said that I seemed to be fine minus some High Blood Pressure from being overweight. He doesn't think an EKG was needed, but said I could always go to the ER since I don't have insurance. He is saying that it's more than likely anxiety that is causing my issues. At the moment though I am feeling a sense of fear since waking up.

My situation right now that has been triggering my anxiety is that I lost my job and home 5 months ago, and I have been unable to find work. Two weeks ago my unemployment was cut off so now I have no way of paying rent to a friend who is letting me sleep on his couch. My body has started developing bad pains throughout my joints, and my chest causing shortness of breath and what may be acid reflux after I eat. Up until two weeks ago I was really only getting pains and weakness, but now the symptoms seem to have become more severe. I am just not sure what to do, and I am just scared.
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wmhsemp responded:
I know the feeling. I'm finding that a constant fear if a heart issue is causing me anxiety. I take BP meds but if I feel my pressure's up or get a reading o 140 over anything off I go. The pounding heart is terrible because I'm sure I'm stroking out. It's an irritating time.

I've wore a heart monitor, EKG, stress test, and a test that takes an image of your heart to check for blockages eric. It all looked good but I still can't shake the anxiety.

Hang in there. I have more good that bad days. Get your mind on other things.
 
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Reid Wilson, PhD replied to wmhsemp's response:
To both of you (and anyone else in your situation) I would say that one way to begin to bring some relief is to distinguish between worries that are signals and worries that are noise. Obviously, you must take physical sensations seriously. But once you have been to a physician who reassures you about the lack of medical evidence for a heart issue, then you can begin to address some of your worry as psychological and unnecessary. Work on committing to a set of symptoms that automatically triggers your visit to a medical site. If you need to, have your physician help you decide what those cues are. When you get symptoms (related to your heart or stroke) other than those, or you find yourself worrying about your heart anyway, treat those as noise. Work on letting them go, because they hold no helpful data.
Another way to think about this is that you may have an anxiety condition overlaying these symptoms (and possibly causing some of them). You must not let the anxiety condition control your mind. You must assert yourself if you are going to stop feeling victimized by worried attention to sensations. If you let that worry control you, it can take over your day.


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