Sweaty palms, racing heartbeat, and growling stomach.. We have almost all experienced these types of psychosomatic symptoms when we’re stressed, anxious or nervous.
But what happens if these symptoms become a daily occurrence and start to interfere with our daily lives? How can we differentiate between psychosomatic symptoms and other medical issues?
Let’s take a closer look at what Psychosomatic Symptoms Disorder (PSD) is, its symptoms, risk factors, complications, along with ways to treat it as well as prevent it.
Table of Content:
- What is Psychosomatic Symptoms Disorder?
- What are the symptoms of Psychosomatic Symptoms Disorder?
- What are the risk factors of PSD?
- How can dismissing PSD affect you?
- How to treat PSD?
- How to prevent PSD
- Bottom line
What is Psychosomatic Symptoms Disorder?
Psychosomatic symptoms disorder is a psychological condition that leads to physical symptoms, often without any medical explanation, and can affect almost any part of the body.
People with the disorder tend to seek frequent medical attention, and become frustrated when they’re constantly dismissed without a diagnosis. This is because the source of their symptoms are purely psychological and not a physical issue or dysfunction.
What are the symptoms of Psychosomatic Symptoms Disorder?
The psychosomatic disorder can affect almost any part of the body, and symptoms differ from one person to another. Common examples include:
- muscle pain
- Back pain
- High blood pressure
- Trouble breathing
- Headaches and migraines
- Skin rash
And many others.
What are the risk factors of PSD?
Experiencing the chronic illnesses can affect your mental health and consequently increase your risk of having more psychosomatic symptoms. Some of these chronic illnesses include:
- Heart disease
- Gastrointestinal diseases
- Respiratory diseases
- Diseases of the deaf gland system
- Dermatological conditions
How can dismissing PSD affect you? (notable complications)
If you constantly ignore your own psychosomatic symptoms or have doctors that dismiss them because they cannot identify the physical causes or treat them, then with time, you might experience the following complications:
- Problems at completing everyday tasks
- Problems in maintaining relationships
- Problems at work or unemployment
- Other mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression
- Increased risk of depression and suicide
- Financial problems caused by excessive healthcare visits with no diagnosis
How to treat PSD?
Since the source of the symptoms is psychological, then treatment is most likely going to be psychological as well. If your doctor can’t seem to find a physical cause for your symptoms, then you should consider therapy. The treatment to psychosomatic symptoms disorder includes:
- Talk therapist with therapy approaches that breakdown thoughts, feelings, and behaviors like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Treating the physical symptoms, if any
How to prevent PSD?
The best way to prevent psychosomatic symptoms is to take care of your mental health, and here’s how you can do that:
- Don’t hesitate to consult a therapist if you feel anxious or depressed
- Learn how to identify when you’re feeling stressed, your body’s reaction to stress, and learn to manage your stress with relaxation techniques and strategies
- Get early treatment to avoid further complications if you think you’re struggling with psychosomatic symptoms.
- Stick to your treatment plan with your therapist to prevent relapses or worsening symptoms
Bottom Line: Don’t dismiss your symptoms
You might feel helpless when you’re experiencing psychosomatic symptoms, especially if they become chronic or disrupt your daily life. It can be incredibly frustrating if you’re experiencing chronic digestive problems and doctors can’t seem to find the source of the pain or even not take your pain seriously anymore.
Remember that even though your symptoms are psychosomatic, they shouldn’t be taken lightly. You should always receive the care you deserve because your symptoms are real, and treatment is available. Don’t hesitate to connect to a therapist that can help you manage your stress, decrease your symptoms, and live a healthy and balanced life.
A platform like Ayadi with a roster of qualified therapists and psychologists that speak both English and Arabic can help you find the best therapist for you. You can browse their specializations and treatment methods or talk to one of our client care agents to match you with a therapist for your needs.