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Author Topic: Feeling like HA is taking over...  (Read 231 times)

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Offline docaholic

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Feeling like HA is taking over...
« on: June 12, 2014, 11:33:45 PM »
Hey everybody,

I'm relatively new to this forum, and so far, this place has been a place of reassurance as well as a safe haven.

I'm trying my best to not freak out about the tiniest things, and yet, here I am, freaking out about whether or not I have leukemia.

I know my fear is irrational, as the only symptom I have are petechiae, and they're so minor, it takes awhile just to spot them. Sure I know I haven't noticed them before, but as I type, they're actually a lot less pronounced than what they looked like yesterday, in fact they're actually fading.

Weirdly enough, the petechiae aren't even scattered; they look to be in a grid pattern, so I know that it's probably due to either a) piece of clothing that I may have squished up against, or b) slept on my arm and had some bumps from the blanket bruise.

I know all these things, and knowing that i'm 24, male and with no major history of illnesses, I'm STILL freaking out about this (there's always the "what-if" factor).

I've looked at statistics (average age of diagnosis is around 60-70 years old, with an incidence in the general population of about 12 / 100000), and even though that rate seems pretty low (in fact, I'm in the age which has the LOWEST risk for leukemia, and I have a greater chance of being killed by a CAR, yet I don't freak out about getting into one of those everyday).

All these things point to the fact that I should NOT be worried in the slightest, yet here I am, getting all the ever more anxious.

Is there anything I can do? I'm continually feeling anxious that I'm sick, but I know that I have no reason to.

Thanks for listening, just typing this out has made me feel somewhat better.
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Offline thenomnomnomicon

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Re: Feeling like HA is taking over...
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2014, 02:14:06 AM »
I read like the first three sentences. Got the gist.

My grandmother has leukemia and is virtually symptom-free. And I'm sure you already know this is a very treatable form of cancer.

My best friend, on the other hand, probably most-definitely has leukemia or MS (I know that's a weird differential, but true) and refuses to be tested to see which it is (this is how normies react when there actually is something wrong, they avoid it).

And for like the billionth time, those tiny red dots are normal.
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Offline nikol373

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Re: Feeling like HA is taking over...
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2014, 09:18:08 PM »
Hey Docaholic,
I'm 24 as well, female, and dealing with extreme leukemia / lymphoma fears...second time around. Thought I had gotten out of this dark place I ended up in back when I Was in college, but I've somehow spiraled back in. It just sucks.

I do the constant lower leg checks for petechiae...  Probably my biggest health related OCD issue. I went to my doctor 2ish years back to have the full gamut of blood run to ease my mind, and nothing was there. I don't even know if I actually know what petechiae look like... I have little red flecks everywhere; that stupid blanch test is arbitrary, and I find myself scouring my ankles with flashlights looking for more small specks after a day at work in high heels. If people saw me, they would inevitably think I am insane. I am so fed up. However - this is what I have learned to do to cope....

Try reading health anxiety books- Amazon has a good selection. Honestly, when I get all riled up, I take my medications and find I can think rationally about the subject. Anxiety will do crazy things to the brain and body. Try to figure out the root of all your HA, and what your ultimate worry is.... We're all going to kick it at some point, I know I'd just rather be and old grey hair lady. I want to get the most out of life. Funny how I've spent so many days wasted worrying about the "what-ifs" when really all I want is to live life to the fullest. Quite the catch-22.

Good luck with your struggle - you'll come around. I've learned you don't want to go to the doctor for every little thing....it's like the boy who cried wolf - when something is REALLY wrong with you, they'll be more apt to discount your symptoms due to your HA past. Try to rationalize - talk to a therapist, if need be.

Typing it out does make me feel better, as well. I've turned to these boards many a time when I've thought I was knocking on death's door. Knowing each other's struggles and sometimes even adding a little humor to the whole ordeal can really help you to get back into the place where you want to be.

Good luck - you'll be fine. I'll be fine.  ::) I often think it's those of us that cherish our lives so immensely that constantly end up worrying about it ending - we're passionate. Just go enjoy it.
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Offline docaholic

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Re: Feeling like HA is taking over...
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2014, 02:12:28 AM »
Thanks for your replies nikol and thenomnomnomicon.

It really makes me feel a lot better knowing that I'm not alone in feeling like this, and that perhaps I'm being super-crazy anxious about nothing.

That doesn't make it any less difficult, but know that someone understands what I'm going through definitely helps.

I know the stats, and I know that chances are that I'll be okay. I honestly think I'll need to talk to my GP though; this is my second major attack of anxiety recently (I had one last year, and this current one has consisted of MS scares and the current leukemia scare)

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Offline nikol373

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Re: Feeling like HA is taking over...
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2014, 09:15:51 PM »
So after that post I got so panicky and ended up getting a CBC. Haha oops. But all came back well. Just wanted to see how you made out! Hope good news all around :)
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"Fight fires in your best clothes,
Touch skin with your eyes closed,
Chase thunder...
With the volume down
Pack a suitcase, wander to the next town..."

Offline docaholic

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Re: Feeling like HA is taking over...
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2014, 10:41:50 PM »
Thanks for asking!

I've been having some good days since then.

I know, it's a constant struggle; the main point I keep coming back to is that my chances of having such a disease is quite low regarding my medical history and my current age group, but I still can't let it go.

Always the "what if" factor.

My anxiety has leveled off a bit, but I'm still going to inquire with my doctor about therapy, and I'm hoping it'll settle me down.

Here's hoping that I'm on the path to something better!
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