Anxiety Ireland

Health Anxiety, is a common anxiety focused on the health of ourselves or others.

Health Anxiety, is a common anxiety focused on the health of ourselves or others.

Health Anxiety

Health anxiety, often misunderstood and overlooked, is a condition marked by an individual’s excessive and persistent worry about having a serious medical condition, despite medical evidence to the contrary. This anxiety can manifest even in the absence of any physical symptoms or following the experience of minor symptoms, which are then interpreted as signs of serious illness. It’s a struggle that can significantly impair daily functioning, leading to constant doctor visits, numerous medical tests, and an overwhelming preoccupation with one’s health.

Health Anxiety
Health Anxiety

Health anxiety is more than just a fleeting concern about one’s health; it’s an ongoing fear that consumes thoughts and actions. People with health anxiety might find themselves in a relentless loop of symptom checking, researching diseases online, and seeking reassurance from health professionals, friends, or family. A common symptom as well may be turning to Dr. Google to search their symptoms. However, these reassurance-seeking behaviors often provide only temporary relief, or worse they give us new things to catastrophize and then cycle of anxiety soon resumes.

This form of anxiety was previously known under various terms such as hypochondriasis. Formally the sufferer with health anxiety was called a hypochondriac. However, modern psychological understanding has evolved, recognizing it more as a manifestation of anxiety rather than a standalone disorder. It’s now categorized within the spectrum of general anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder in some diagnostic manuals, acknowledging the obsessive nature of the worry and the compulsive seeking of reassurance.

General Anxiety

Health Anxiety

When a problem with anxiety develops it takes our perfectly natural evolutionary defence system and hijacks it so that we become generally anxioussocially anxiousphobicobsessive compulsivetraumatised after an event (PTSD) or suffer from sudden panic attacks.

Check out our blog posts how CBT helps Health Anxiety. Our therapists who work with health anxiety are Michael Ledden, Tara Morrissey, Aoife Doyle, Sean Thunder, Stephen Keogh, Elaine Garrigan and Sinead O’Hare.

Getting Help

Thousands of people in Ireland suffer in silence with many kinds of difficulties yet general anxiety is probably one of the most widespread issues. General anxiety doesn’t become a huge debilitating problem overnight but over time it digs itself into us so that we’re paralysed. Often when we really notice it, it has really set in and we can feel like we’ve gone crazy.

Early intervention or even crisis intervention counselling/psychotherapy is way of giving sufferers back control over their thoughts and ultimately how they feel. Anxiety Ireland has fully trained counselors nationwide on standby to assist you in taking back control of these problems. Our network of counselors are working online and over the phone so they can be free to reach you where you are located.


  • Constant Worry Over Health
  • Misinterpreting Normal or Minor Bodily Sensations
  • Excessive Health Information Seeking
  • Frequent Medical Appointments
  • Checking the Body for Signs of Illness
  • Reassurance Seeking
  • Distress or Impairment in Daily Life
  • Insomnia or Sleep Disturbances
  • Difficulty Concentrating on Tasks

“It felt like I was seeing the world in black and white… like I was wearing dark glasses that constantly cast a shadow on everything I could see. All the colour and happiness in my life had been sucked away by the GAD and depression which had consumed my life. I felt like I could never break free and that I would be stuck in this miserable existence for the rest of my life.”

“I thought I was going mad. No one else around me seemed to understand what I was going though. I felt so alone. I couldn’t seem to stop worrying about everything. I knew in my head it didn’t make sense, but nothing I could do would stop the thoughts that kept coming into my head and driving me crazy.”

“For me anxiety feels like a fear that I’m gonna mess up. Fear that I won’t be able to equal what others do with ease (looks like they do it with ease anyway!). An irritable kind of feeling… fearing that I’m not going to be able to handle things. This made me feel things must be a certain way or going right. If not, I get out of my comfort zone and am therefore in a ‘un-safe zone’.”

Schedule Appointment

Many people live and suffer with anxiety every day. Psychotherapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) are proven ways to combat anxiety and related issues.