So now that Iíve registered here, Iím going to share my health anxiety story with all of you. I donít know if this is a good idea to post my whole story, but I might as well because this is ruining my life. Iím an 18 year old male, and health anxiety has gotten very serious for me in the past two months, so letís begin. Also Iím sorry for any grammar and spelling mistakes in this post, Iím tired and slightly lightheaded while writing this, Iím too tired to check this over so please understand.
Where to start? Well from talking to myself and self-analyzing my story all times of the day I have a very good outline of this whole mess.
It all began when I started to develop acne in grade 11, I canít exactly pin point this moment in time, but thatís when I began this health anxiety nightmare. Since I have lots of acne around my mouth, I thought that I had the herpes STD virus, and the reason was because I kissed a girl in grade 8. The thing is that this was just the beginning of health anxiety, but it didnít give me much anxiety at the time.
The problem was that this fear of disease grew inside of me for the next 8 months. At first it was a thought that popped into my mind like once or twice a day, and if I were acne free around my mouth for a week I would totally forget about this disease.
As time went on, the fears grew, my mind rewired itself to think that something was wrong, and the worst thing was that I never told anyone about this fear until it was too late.
Fast forward about 8 months to June of 2013 (keep in mind the thought of herpes has manifested for 8 months now), and Iím tearing my hair out (not literally). I would think about it all times of the day, and if I had acne right beside my mouth I would really start to panic.
So somewhere in June of 2013 I finally got the idea to get a herpes test from my family doctor. Also I still had not told anyone at this point. Speaking to my doctor about this was really embarrassing and also taking the test sheet to the blood lab at my family clinic was horrible.
So they took some blood and sent it in, the results would be back in 2 weeks.
This is when 0103 hit the fan, midway during the week of waiting somewhere in June of 2013 I finally broke down and told my parents, I cried for hours telling them I would be worthless and nothing in life. I seriously thought my life would be over. This is when I finally started to develop the physically symptoms of anxiety, it started with mass tiredness all during the day. And by the end of first week while waiting for the blood test (also while doing my final grade 12 exams) I felt incredibly dizzy and light headed during the day.
Fast forward a week and I get a phone call from my doctor. Test NEGATIVE.
Great this whole event should be over right???? I should get back to enjoying my summer now right? Exams are over and I have an 84 average and I can go to any Canadian University and Iím disease FREE!!
Not the case.
Eventually after a few days from the test results my anxiety symptoms didnít go away. I began to think ďwhat is wrong? Ēthe test said negative I should be happy?Ē ďwhy at this exact moment do I feel dizzy and tired?Ē
Thatís when 0103 hit the fan for the second time. The idea popped into my head that maybe I had contracted another sexually transmitted disease. I really donít want to name it because itís really embarrassing but it starts with H. if you have a brain and you run through the STDs that you know, youíll find one that starts with H thatís contactable during sex. Now thereís an important thing to note, and ill openly admit itÖ..Iíve never had sexual relations. The only relations that Iíve had done with girls was previously mentioned. We will call this virus, H-Virus please.
So there itís out there and the whole world can see. Iím honestly at the point where I donít care, I just want to feel back to normal again.
Back to the story, so I started thinking about this second disease that wonít be named in July. I just finished grade 12 and my summer had begun.
And my mind was searching for way that I could have contracted it. The first thing that popped into my mind was that I was at my school computer lab on the last day of school scratching at a mosquito bite on my leg to the point where it bled a little, so I quickly wiped off the drop of blood with my thumb.
Thinking of this one event sent me back into a high state of anxiety. At the time a month ago, I was dizzy, tired, had irritable bowel symptoms, headaches, muscle spasms, sore muscles in my neck and depressed.
So for about the first two weeks of June at the beginning of my summer break I sat on my couch for 10 hours a day while I was awake thinking about this one event at school (not literally, but it seemed like it). And when I think about this event now, Iím 100% positive that I was in fight of flight mode for hours on end everyday which made the symptoms worse.
With this event I also developed theories in my head that someone tried to get me sick in one of the later classes in the computer lab that day, which made me develop a general anxiety disorder. I did this because my mind needed to make a way for it to be plausible in my head to contract this disease though this event, I can say now that getting struck by lightning while walking home was probably a higher chance than contracting this disease.
So after two weeks of thinking about this event I found out three things, first I found out about health anxiety. I was so relieved to find out that many other people are experiencing this and that it was a well-documented and well known disorder. Second was that I talked to an old friend about who sat in the computer lab on the following classes. Turns out thereís a guitar class first period so no one uses the computers, I sit at my computer second period, and just by chance, my old friend sat at the same computer as me during the third period class. In addition, no one used the computer in the fourth period class (only 4 classes used this computer lab at my school).
The third good thing was that I found out this specific disease cannot survive outside of the human body for more than 5 hours, and since im in the second period class, and the first period class is a guitar class, nobody should have touched the mouse in about 18 hours.
So there, its done, iv solved this problem right??? Iíve had massive amounts of adrenaline in my body for weeks on end thinking about this for hours and hours. Iíve also solved the event in my mind and I have solid proof to totally disprove of everything that I was thinking and making up in my mind so it should be done right? Also I had been about to forget about this event for 20-30 minutes several times after solving this issue and started to enjoy life again. Plus the symptoms went down and my anxiety wasnít as high. The headaches left and things felt good for a few days
Nope not yetÖ A few days later I passed a sick man while out for a 20 minute walk at my local park, and trust me, this guy looked sick as hell. And BOOOOOOM, anxiety flooded into my head, i was thinking immediately that ďthis man might have a super form of H-VirusĒ and could be contactable by the air molecules in his lungs.
Im really getting tired of writing this now but its only a little bit more.
This second event just mentioned was weak in my head and my symptoms have leveled out and have been more predictable with my anxiety. I thought about this event for about a week into the beginning of August.
Soon this event lost all relativity, I knew that it was so obscured that it was just ridiculous to think about. One again I switched theories into this final event.
This third event that I thought I contracted H-virus was the needle that the nurse gave me at my family health clinic 2 months ago.
And this is where Iím at, at this exact moment in time while writing this, the thoughts inside my head are the following:
ďDid the nurse somehow use a dirty needle, and gave me a disease?Ē
ďDid someone tell the nurse to use an old needle to get me sick?Ē
Iíve been thinking these two things since the beginning of August.
My symptoms right now are:
*slight dizziness when I wake up
* tired for the first few hours of the morning
*I feel like my neck is extremely swollen, which is most likely my muscles in my neck being full of adrenaline
*irritable bowel syndrome
So thereís the story, itís out there. There are lots of hidden thoughts inside of my head that I donít want to write down but this is the basic timeline.
*To defend myself about actually being diseased, Iíve visited three different doctors now and also two psychologists that all say that nothing is wrong with my health and that this is anxiety. Also, Iíve never experienced the flu or pneumonia or shingles during this entire ordeal which is a major symptom of the specific disease that Iím constantly thinking about.
*please if you have anything to say about my story itís appreciated, even if itís a quick sentence to encourage me. Iím also very sensitive at the moment to disease names, if you have to say it than say it but other than that refer to the second disease as H-virus if you have to.
*just a quick note, I have a great psychologist that Iíve been seeing for the past two weeks and weíve found out that I feel very very unsafe in the world. I will continue with behavioral therapy. I also am visiting my family doctor again in a week to get myself a psychiatrist so I can think about medication. If you can suggest any medication for this particular story it would be greatly appreciated.
Finally, if you are here and reading this final sentence, may god bless your soul, you are a very kind and caring person to read this much of a complete strangers problems. I will check back in on this every so often so Iíll read all your comments. Right now I still have the original thought in my head that was created 2 months back with the computer lab incident ďwhat if these symptoms of anxiety which formed from worrying about herpes, are actually symptoms of H-VirusĒ, and ďwhat if somebody has conspired against me to make me sick with this disease?Ē. These two questions are all that I think about from day to day, and itís truly a living hell.
*If you have questions about this story feel free to write them because I know this has been confusing.