I've always been very health conscious and worried about health, yet "white-coat" phobic. For some reason in the past few months I've been imagining one disease (or the possibility of one) after another and have made multiple doctor visits for what (most of the time, except for an ear infection) was nothing.
Three times last month I went because I thought I felt bumps on my neck. Turned out to be nothing. I was fine for a while then I thought I felt breast tenderness (I'm a guy). So I had to get to the doctor right away. She said she could feel no lumps or masses but Rxed an ultrasound just to make sure. No sooner do I start to feel better about that then my mind moves to something else. Now I'm getting a fear of testicular cancer that I have to check "down there" a few times a day. We learned how to do a self-check in college and I have to say that I have felt NOTHING unusual, and there is nothing to go to a doctor with, yet I still have a persistent fear - of what, I don't know. That I missed something? Am I checking correctly? Better do it again. I realize that doctor visits will NOT put my mind at ease because I need to quell the underlying anxiety. But how?
I've never had any of the life events that usually trigger hypochondria. I've never lost a friend or loved one to serious illness, nor are there any traumatic experiences involving death from my childhood. I don't know why this is getting so much worse in the past few months. I've gone from occasional health worry and doctor avoidance to near constant and many doctor visits. But even more, I don't know what I can do to start making this better.
I have started seeing a therapist last week but I don't have good hope there. I have never found therapy to be real helpful in the past. It doesn't last long enough and I don't feel I get tools to deal with it in the 167 hours per week that I'm not there. I need some strategy or meditation or reassurance or SOMETHING that I can get by with.