People with health anxiety tend to see all bodily sensations and symptoms as dangerous. When symptoms or sensations emerge, people with health anxiety use "safety behaviors" to reduce their anxiety. In exposure therapy, one faces the feared stimuli (e.g., bodily sensations) without using safety behaviors.
Improve Health Anxiety with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
How Information Processing Biases can Increase Health Anxiety
With health anxiety, we have unhelpful or inaccurate core beliefs about health and illness. These beliefs lead us to process information ...
Fear of Death: How CBT Can Decrease Fears of the Dying Process
When it comes to the dying process, people often fear being in intense pain, feeling humiliated, and burdening or hurting others. Many pe...
- Safety behaviors are things some people do to reduce uncertainty and try and ensure good health.
- Although people use safety behaviors to reduce anxiety, they increase anxiety over the long-term.
- The vicious cycle of health anxiety can be interrupted by learning to refrain from the use of safety behaviors.
- With health anxiety, we often assume that we need to be symptom-free in order to be healthy, but this isn't true.
- "Body noise" includes symptoms and bodily sensations that are due to normal, self-regulatory processes that are not a serious disease.
- Behavioral experiments can help you refrain from "black-and-white thinking" when it comes to your health.