Illness anxiety disorder (hypochondriasis)

Some people are overly concerned with matters related to their health and illness. They constantly take care of themselves, measure their heart rate, have their blood pressure measured, try to discover their aching places by feeling their bodies, and sometimes even try to look for signs of illness by smelling their stools and urine. They constantly search in books, on the Internet and try to discover their diseases.

This condition, which we call “Illness Anxiety Disorder”, is known as “Hypochondriasis” with its old name, and “Disease of Disease” among the people. While such a group of patients are trying to discover their disease by going doctor to doctor and having tests done, another group is afraid to go to the doctor and worry that they will be diagnosed if they go. Such people worry excessively about their illness and cannot cope with it. In fact, the problem is not whether there is a disease, but the anxiety about being sick, that is, anxiety.

Causes include stresses related to life, traumas (especially childhood traumas), experiencing a symptom that is believed to threaten health, childhood illnesses, and the family’s attitude towards them. In addition, the presence of diseases such as anxiety disorder, depression, OCD can also initiate this disease. Over time, such people’s social life, work, family and marriage life may also be adversely affected.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapies and drug therapy are used in the treatment. If left untreated, frequent doctor visits and tests can cause financial damage, while the thought that the disease that does not exist in the person is not cured can also increase anxiety.

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