Health Anxiety During COVID-19: Coping with Uncertainty

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought an unprecedented change in our lives. Being constantly exposed to the news of the rising COVID-19 cases and fatalities has aroused a sense of anxiety among people worldwide. While it is crucial to stay informed and protect ourselves, the constant exposure to COVID news can trigger feelings of anxiety and stress. In this article, we will discuss ‘Health Anxiety,’ also known as Hypochondriasis, and how to cope up with anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Health Anxiety (HA) is the obsessive worry and fear of having an undiagnosed medical issue. It is more than just worrying about your health; it is a state of hyper-vigilance associated with overestimating the probability of developing an illness, misinterpreting physical symptoms, and constantly seeking reassurance from others.

During the current pandemic, Health Anxiety has become a common concern, with many people feeling overwhelmed by uncertainty and fear of contracting COVID-19. Unlike other forms of anxiety, Health Anxiety can seriously impact an individual’s well-being and lead to a decrease in their quality of life.

If you are someone who has developed Health Anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic, here are some tips to help mitigate your symptoms:

1. Limit your news intake: It is essential to stay informed, but be mindful of your source and time spent consuming news related to COVID-19. Even though you might feel a sense of control by keeping up with every update, it can contribute to feelings of anxiety.

2. Strive for Balance: Incorporating a healthy balance of activities throughout the day can help disrupt problematic thinking patterns. Engage in activities that bring relaxation and pleasure, such as drawing, reading, exercise, meditation, and spending time with loved ones.

3. Practice Positive Thinking: Try not to let your negative thoughts consume you. Focus on the positive aspects of your life, such as the people and experiences that bring joy.

4. Seek Support: If possible, speak with a therapist or counselor to work through your sense of uncertainty and fear. You could also join support groups on social media or make use of telemedicine services.

In conclusion, coping with Health Anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic is a difficult task, but not impossible. Those struggling with these feelings must prioritize self-care and balanced living, focus on positive experiences and thoughts, and seek professional support as required. By making these changes, you can take control of your anxiety and enjoy a healthier and happier life.