I have been looking all over the internet to share what I'm going though without being negatively judged or branded a Hypochondriac, and hopefully someone can help me alleviate some concerns. First of all, I am 23 years old and I am starting to accept that I do suffer with Health Anxiety.
It all started at the age of 14, I woke up one morning and had intense stomach pains. Like I had been stabbed and had a small amount of blood during the scheduled morning bathroom routine - I went to the doctors and the GP kept telling me to go home, go home, go home theres nothing wrong. It wasn't until I saw an out of hours doctor on a Sunday, I was referred to a specialist and was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis after a series of checks and tests.
Moving on.... Since then, I have had 4 life changing operations to have my colon completely removed due to the severity of the Coltitis. A Professor at Oxford in the UK carried out a surgery to make an internal pouch, which removes the need to wear an external appliance (Colostomy Bag) which I had for 6 years.
My poor mother also suffered with Thyroid cancer and has had 2 operations and treatment, she is fine now though :)
Based on these medical experiences, I find it difficult to trust GP's and also find it difficult to believe any type of test result. I always have in my mind that its always going to be worse, than it might actually be.
Now, I noticed at the age of 18/19 (4/5 years ago) that I had a lump under my left hand side jaw. After seeing the GP, I forgot about it as I felt like an idiot again. Now it feels like it has become bigger and bigger and can feel tender at times. When seeing the GP again, she said it was the Carotid artery and nothing to worry about (which I didn't believe)... I didn't think the artery grew, was movable and felt like a lump.
I don't really know what it is, from what I have read I think it may be a lymph node as there are plenty under the jaw.
Has anyone else experienced anything similar?
Can anyone please advise any techniques, activities, etc that helps with overcoming Health Anxiety?
Many thanks all!