Everyone knows people who overly closely monitor their health. They have huge stocks of drugs for any disease, an increased level of anxiety with any symptom noticed, and over-attention to media reports about medical statistics. These are hypochondriacs, now you know Hypochondriasis.
Fear of getting sick is a normal occurrence for any mentally healthy person. After all, fear is a tool with which nature enables us to be less exposed to danger. This is evolution and what remains of the ancestors. This is a survival tool.
Hypochondriacs are people whose fear of getting sick is not just a precautionary and protective character. The fears of hypochondriacs for their health are destructive, sometimes causing damage to their socialization, career, relationships, and creativity.
There are frequent cases when a person with an obsessive fear of getting sick does not leave the house and misses a lot of opportunities simply because he has a runny nose or he felt temporary weakness.
Hypochondriacs seem to listen very carefully to their feelings, starting to perceive any sneeze as a sign of an impending serious illness. And over time, the intensity of Hypochondriasis can increase, especially if in other areas of life a person has an increased level of stress.
What to do with Hypochondriasis?
How to help yourself or your loved one cope with this obsessive and panic fear of getting sick, which blocks normal life and prevents you from enjoying life?
The list of rules that should be followed when working with your own Hypochondriasis or to help people:
- Stop scolding the hypochondriac for his fears and illogical behavior (and yourself, if you are the hypochondriac yourself). If you think that a constant reminder of the damage that the hypochondriac has will help him to stop being afraid, you are very mistaken. The more hypochondriac feels guilty and dissatisfied with himself, the more likely he is to go to the next, deeper, and more destructive level of hypochondria. Systemic negative emotions in the period weaken the human nervous system and this leads to a greater intensity of attacks of fear at the moment.
- Try to differentiate yourself and your Hypochondriasis. After all, while you think that obsessively fearing fears is your choice, it will be more difficult for you to take this fear under control. When you get used to the idea that fear is born within you, but this does not happen of your will, that is, the appearance of this obsessive fear – this is not a consequence of your desire to be afraid, then you will separate yourself from fear. This will help you more effectively overcome periods of increased hypochondria. It is useful to remember that when a person begins to cough, he does not think that this is his choice? He understands that coughing and mucosal inflammation are symptoms of the disease. It is important to perceive the fear of hypochondriac as a symptom of hypochondria, and not as your own desire to keep up with your health.
- Think about why different people are afraid of disease to varying degrees. The answer to this question is the reason for fears. Usually, we are afraid of much more than those events whose probability we deny in our lives. We are less afraid of what we consider the norm of everyday life. This means that hypochondriac is so much afraid of disease, not because it could potentially get sick. He is afraid of denying his right to hurt. Because of his belief that illness is something so terrible, and that he is the only person on earth who should never be sick!
- Give yourself time to understand and work with hypochondria. Do not demand results from yourself right now. It’s a big mistake when a hypochondriac makes a promise not to be afraid anymore from tomorrow! Well, imagine that a person who has a leg injury promises himself that tomorrow he will stop limping and will run as fast as people who do not have this injury. Try not to demand from yourself that while you can’t do it! This will allow you to lower the general background of anxiety, which will lead to a decrease in the intensity of fear of getting sick.
- Begin to pronounce and spell the following words and phrases: “I do not want to be afraid, but hypochondria makes me afraid. Obsessive fears inside, but this is not my choice. This fear does not make me a stupid person, even if it makes me behave irrationally. My fears are my obstacles that objectively exist and limit my possibilities. I am a person and I have the right to such my own limitations because having limitations in something is humane. Each person is limited by something. I want to overcome my fears, but it will take me some time. I give myself this time, I understand that the solution to my problems does not have to happen in the time that I fantasized myself. I understand that disease is an integral part of human life – neither bad nor good. I try to accept my human right to be sick, gradually refusing the requirement for myself to be absolutely and always a healthy person. ” This auto-training will help you to feel more relaxed over time.
If possible, try to find an assistant who will accompany you along the way and support. This may be a person who once had a similar problem and was able to take control of his fears. But it is best to turn to a specialist, a psychologist who professionally owns tools to curb fears.
Yes, good psychologists are expensive! In the same way as high-quality cars, equipment and clothes. But you deserve to start living a better life and get those opportunities that are so far limited by your Hypochondriasis.