What is a Hypochondriac?
In today’s show, Bevvy Smith and Dr. Oz talk about people who self-medicate on compulsion. We commonly call them hypochondriacs. These are people that self-diagnose by going to the computer and googling a small malady, and making it into a catastrophe. Bevvy’s friends habitually go online to self-diagnose their illnesses. She has two examples. One, she has a friend who sneezes and thinks she has pneumonia. Another friend stubbed his toes and says his toes hurt so bad. Then he googled and he self-diagnosed. He discovered through the internet that he has gout. He actually has the ‘king’s disease”. Hilarious but serious. It is no joke to go diagnosing yourself of diseases that are not even there.
Are there any hidden hypochondriacs in your family, or do you know of a friend who is one? Bevvy has a card she sends to people who are unnecessarily paranoid, and it says, “Wishing you a speedy recovery from your imaginary illness!”. The advice really is that limiting your time on social media would help relieve your symptoms.
The Purse of a Hidden Hypochondriacs!
One caller turned in her hypochondriac sister to Dr. Oz because she is so concerned about her sister’s unhealthy habit. She got a camera and secretly took a video of her sister’s purse. What she found there amazed Dr. Oz and the audience. She discovered different kinds of medicines that her sister keeps on her all the time. She has antibiotic ointment in her bag, hand tissues, hand sanitizers, 3 kinds of pain relievers, a big bottle of cough prevention medication, 2 different kinds of aspirins, surgical gloves, gauze, bug spray, cream for bad joint, antacid and more. Dr. Oz remarks that it’s like Red Cross stuffed in her bag. Her defense is that it’s “better be safe than sorry”. But Dr. Oz reminded her that honestly she is safe AND sorry. So, Bevvy’s diagnosis of her is #fashiondont. Yes, she looks great, but her medicine shoulder bag is ruining her look.
A Paranoid Doctor-Caller
In this segment, Bevvy and Dr. Oz surprise a self-described hypochondriac who calls her doctor several times a week. The tip off was that she doesn’t see her doctors but calls them a lot. She confesses that she called a couple times today, a couple times yesterday and she keeps calling him. According to her, she keeps calling because her doctor gives her medications or diet advice that do not work and it’s wasting her money. Dr. Oz asks for her phone and found that she had actually called five different doctors the previous day. She explains that, “I live in fear because I am a diabetic. My father passed away from diabetes. My brother’s getting cut up piece by piece. My family was operated by you through open heart surgery…” She keeps calling different doctors because she can’t control her sugar. Instead of makeup, she walks around with a needle because she is on insulin.
With her obvious fear of what diabetes might do to her, Dr. Oz then asks her what she hopes to hear from her doctors. And she answers, “I hope there is a way they can help me to control my diabetes.” Every doctor she goes, she is given different medication and she gets mad. She says, “If my diabetes doesn’t kill me, your medicine would.”
In her case, the problem is obviously not the diabetes itself, but it’s her fear that’s driving her to call different doctors every day.
How To Identify a Hypochondriac?
Dr. Oz and Bevvy reveal to us the signs of a hypochondriac. So, you will know you are one when:
1) It’s flu season and you track it like it’s Santa Claus on Christmas.
2) You block someone online just because their status update mentions ‘coming down with a cold’!
3) When someone says Mayo, you think clinic–not lunch!
In this show, Dr. Oz only wishes to calm down the hypochondriacs. His prescription now is hoped to help them know what is really going on. The real problem is fear. That’s the bottom line.
So, if you are an emerging hypochondriac, you are just obsessed with ache and pain. And it helps to honestly admit that you are not actually sick. It’s only fear that makes you think you are sick. So, before you buy another over-the-counter medicine and before you dial your doctor’s number, think again.
Learn how to satisfy your needs for self-diagnosis with medical reference materials written for the masses, With over 300 deadly diseases profiled, conveniently organized by symptom (real or imagined) in this Self-Diagnosis guide for Hypochondriac