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I have been chronically ill since childhood, and while I have learned to manage my physical aspects of my illness quite well as an adult, in recent years my mental health deteriorated significantly, to the point that I nearly had to be hospitalized due to severe anxiety and panic attacks. Medication and a good therapist have helped, but I still have a long way to go. My therapist tells me that many of her anxiety patients also have a chronic illness and/or disability; the two seem to feed on each other, unfortunately. My physical illness certainly isn't the only cause of my mental illness--I can now see where my mother, grandmother and sister all have symptoms of anxiety disorder--but it's a big one. I've come to the conclusion that people with chronic illness need to pay just as much attention to their mental health as their physical health. Articles like this one help because they summarize a lot of what I read and talk about in therapy, in a way that I can print out and read over when I am having a particularly bad day. I will have to check out the books you mentioned as well. Thank you!
Making the best of 17 years of chronic pain and illness
Extra stress can show up anytime, so have strategies in place for handling it.
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