Orentsani N Kithan
Psychologist, CIHSR (Referral Hospital), Dimapur, Nagaland
Have you ever faced a medical problem with no possible medical explanation? Do you or someone you know is sick but when you visit the hospital the doctors say you have no illness and all the test reports show normal? Do you have problems where your heart beats fast, your breathing becomes difficult, you feel suffocated and about to die but the doctor tells your heart is healthy and you have no illness? Do you sometimes feel frustrated as you think you have a definite medical problem but the doctor is unable to diagnose your problem and you therefore go in search of a better doctor or a bigger hospital for more investigations? Do you sometimes feel you have a major illness but other people including your family members and doctors say you have no problem and often dismiss your health complains?
But do you know that the problem might not be a medical problem but it might be psychological and stress related? And that there is help available to make you come out of it, to make you healthier and capable of coping with it.
Do you know that anxiety and stress can also affect your physical health and give rise to physical symptoms? And that these problems you are facing might be related to your emotional or environmental or family stresses you are going through?
Scientific studies have shown that one out of four persons in India have anxiety related problems. The symptoms of anxiety include restlessness, being easily tired, difficulty concentrating or mind going blank, irritability, muscle tension, poor sleep and appetite. Also the physical symptoms usually associated with anxiety disorders includes increased heart rate, shortness of breath, headache, sweating and flushing of skin, diarrhea etc.
Most people view anxiety and panic disorders as a form of weakness and thus refrain from getting help. Studies have shown that the rate of anxiety disorders and depression is increasing in India but not many people seek medical or psychological help. Therefore, if you or someone you know is going through similar problems, getting a professional help can help you overcome your problems to restore you back to a healthy person both mentally and physically.