Health Anxiety

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This topic contains 6 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Lc 1 month ago.

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  • #47318

    myrtle rose
    Participant

    I have not posted on here for a while, but I really hope somebody might be able to help. About 2 years ago my middle aged son developed Health anxiety. It started after an unexpected diagnosis of toe arthritis (he was a seasoned marathon runner) and he is now depressed, and in pain from the toes but is also feeling pain in many places in his body although there is no reason for it. He now does minimal gym work and has a wife who merely repeats it is all in his head. The GP has prescribed antidepressants which are not having much effect and nhs CBT the same, He talks to me about it, but I feel helpless about how to help him.
    Hoping you can help me
    Myrtle

    #47321

    Lc
    Participant

    Hi Myrtle, if CBT hasn’t helped maybe try pain management as they do now offer CBT but its up to you if you want to proceed or not. but explains your pain better and the effects of not exercising, pacing and limits to pacing so you can keep going, it does vary of what the individual can do, and keeping pain to a minimum and how to build the length of time up . every one is different, also that some exercising can help with pain but it is down to the individual to want help themselves and to take on board and keep an open mind to it all and to try the different methods, also they do relaxation/ visualization exercises during the coarse to.maybe this might be better for him,but it sounds as though he does need help with his mental health in some way and not just medication, my pain management is really good and offers a wide range of stuff to help you think about your pain and why it takes you round in circles and how to break that cycle. of pain no exercise, low mood ect. Hope this this might help, the trouble with depression is it’s down to the individual to want the help to get better and their perseverance to get better. take care and best wishes ,Lee

    #47322

    myrtle rose
    Participant

    Hi Lee, thank you so much for your help. I understand what you say about helping him to see the importance of wanting to help himself, and reading your post makes me think that a lot of his problem is with acceptance. I did mention pain management to him recently but his answer was that he didn’t want to manage his pain but to get rid of it. If only things were that simple!
    I have been to pain management myself years ago, but only saw OT and psychologist but was not offered the course as I was managing okay. From what you say about it the course would be good, especially to break the cycle of pain. I think that like many of us he is looking for a physical diagnosis (other than his arthritis) to make sense of things.
    Take care and thank you again, Myrtle

    #47323

    Lc
    Participant

    Hi Myrtle, pain management has changed over the years even from when I first went to about a year ago,to help out in the group, it doesn’t take pain away but helps you deal with it and manage it better and have a better understanding of why it causes you so much grief and that by exercising doesnt mean it will make you worse.take care and best wishes.lee

    #47324

    myrtle rose
    Participant

    Hi Lee, that is very encouraging to hear from you how pain management has changed even from a year ago. It sounds like the best thing he could do and I will tell him what you say in the hopes he will take it further with his GP.
    Again, thankyou again, take care Myrtle

    #47325

    Helen H
    Participant

    Hi Myrtle
    I am one of the people on here who has widespread pain, which does not have a muscular/skeletal cause. I had no idea that this was possible until it happened to me, and the consultant told me: ” It is not in your head, but we don’t know the cause.”

    It sounds as if your son is in distress, which is totally understandable. He has gone from running marathons to feeling plagued by pain. Day after day it can really get to you…particularly when those around you aren’t able to understand what is going on. I have been the uncomprehending partner myself, so I am not pointing fingers!

    Unfortunately nothing will really get done unless he keeps going back to the GP- it could be that he needs a change of antidepressants, and he needs to get on the waiting list for the pain clinic.

    You ask what you can do- I would say be supportive, offer to go with him to appointments if you are able, and accept in this moment he is dealing with a lot. Let him know you are on his side and that the anxiety he is feeling is natural considering the pain. So many of us on here have to manage our mental health very actively to cope. Another thought is that you could email him the link to this forum and he could join us.

    Sending my good wishes for you both
    Helen

    #47326

    Lc
    Participant

    Hi Helen, well said I agree with you on that , sometimes I do struggle to find the words as pain management and pain clinics their is a lot to take in and cannot say it all without writing a book.
    Myrtle tell him to try pain management for starters, then pain clinic as Helen says through his GP,and agree that he needs help to address the mental health and understanding pain. which does come with constant pain. then he might be able to move forward rather than wallowing in self pity, but needs to help himself by attending these things. Sorry to sound hard and ruthless,But I do understand, and have empathy,with constant pain for 23 years also I spent 6 years through counselling CBT 1-1 and mindfulness through suicidal thoughts and in that deep black well upto your neck in water trying to get out, it is hard, and with dealing with constant pain on top it is one of lifes difficulties which no-one fully under stands unless you been through it. I wish you and your son well, take care and best wishes.Lee

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