All About CBT for Health Anxiety Problems, How it Works and What’s Involved
CBT for Health Anxiety
CBT for Health Anxiety is one of the most effective approaches for overcoming the emotional distress caused by this condition.
He called these inner-thoughts cognition and argued that the way that people think about their experiences links directly to the emotions that they feel.
In other words our emotional experiences are the outcomes of what we think and believe rather than being caused by external events.
These ideas form the central concept of CBT which states that:
The way people think determines the way that they feel.
In the case of Health Anxiety the emotions that we feel are the direct result of what we think or believe our experiences mean.
Common Health Anxiety Symptoms
Because health anxiety is primarily focused on physical health it often involves symptoms that involve monitoring and checking which may, at times, become obsessive in nature.
Your symptoms may include:
Preoccupation with bodily sensations: People with health anxiety often become fixated on minor bodily sensations or changes, such as heart palpitations, headaches, or stomach discomfort, and interpret them as signs of a serious illness.
Checking for signs of illness: Health anxiety can cause a person to constantly check their body for signs of illness, such as lumps, bumps, or discolorations.
Seeking reassurance: People with health anxiety may seek reassurance from doctors, friends, or family members that they are not sick, but may still struggle to believe that they are not ill.
Avoidance of situations or activities: Health anxiety can cause a person to avoid situations or activities that they believe could trigger or exacerbate their symptoms, such as exercise, travel, or social events.
Anxiety and depression: Health anxiety can be accompanied by feelings of anxiety or depression, and can have a negative impact on a person’s quality of life.
Excessive use of medical resources: People with health anxiety may visit doctors or emergency rooms frequently, undergo unnecessary medical tests, or take excessive amounts of medication.
Inability to accept reassurance: Even if doctors tell them they are healthy, people with health anxiety may struggle to accept this and may continue to believe they are sick.
You may have some or all of these symptoms or you may have other symptoms that are not listed here.
How does CBT for Health Anxiety work?
Normally a programme of CBT for Health Anxiety takes place over a period of 10 to 20 weeks with an hour long session once per week.
Firstly, because the way you think about your day-to-day experiences is determined by your core beliefs, the early sessions of CBT for Health Anxiety involve exploring and measuring these beliefs.
Secondly, once you are able to uncover your core beliefs, your thoughts about certain experiences will make more sense.
Thirdly, by understanding how you have made sense of your experiences in the past you can then begin to make changes to your thoughts and beliefs in order to create new, and more useful, emotional outcomes.
CBT for Health Anxiety builds upon the 5 core CBT principles developed by Aaron Beck and are used extensively in our CORE Programme.
How many sessions of CBT will I need?
Whilst this is a difficult question to be precise about, most people will be able to overcome their Health Anxiety problems in around 10 – 20 sessions.
However, because CBT for Health Anxiety is always tailored to your own individual needs and circumstances, getting the outcome that you want may sometimes require more sessions.
If you have been suffering Health Anxiety problems for many years then in all likelihood, you can reasonably expect to take a bit longer to get where you want to be.
Our CBT for Health Anxiety programme is based on 12 sessions delivered over 12 weeks and uses an online learning platform for you to develop greater self-awareness and knowledge in the days between sessions.
Arrange your FREE initial consultation here.
During this consultation we will discuss your particular issues and the different types of mental health counselling we offer (including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy – CBT) without you having to commit to any counselling going forward.
The consultation lasts around 50 minutes and is a great opportunity to meet with either Paul or Joan and decide if you would like to proceed with any support.
Not Ready to Commit to Therapy Quite Yet?
Then why not see if you can solve your health anxiety problems using our comprehensive, Online Self-Help CBT course.
Written especially for people who prefer not to engage with a therapist before doing everything they can to overcome their problems.
Mirroring our in-house course of CBT, it contains everything that you need to know to tackle mental health challenges for only £149.
We offer cbt of health anxiety problems for people living in:
- West Midlands
- South Staffordshire
You can also access our services around the World using online therapy with Paul.