Symptoms of Searching for Symptoms
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Health and Wellness

Symptoms of Searching for Symptoms

Living under the fear of getting sick.

Symptoms of Searching for Symptoms;_ylu=X3oDMTBtdXBkbHJyBHNlYwNmcC1hdHRyaWIEc2xrA3J1cmw-/RV=2/RE=1477112151/RO=11/

So over the last couple months since junior year began, I’ve learned a few things that I probably should have known before. 1) Produce goes bad and you should always know where it is at any given moment. 2) Paper-thin walls can be a good thing sometimes, but it’s usually not; 3) Knowing how long it takes to walk from your room to campus is an art, to say the least; 4) Mumps is definitely a thing.

Now, I’m not the type of person who is scared of getting sick. I grew up with four siblings and spent a lot of time working with children in high school and college, so the spreading of germs is not a terrifying new idea to me. After some people in my dorm during freshman year began getting a vicious bug, I accepted the fact that I would probably be coming down with what they called “the plague” as well. Somehow, I didn’t, but that concept of you’re probably going to get whatever it is and there’s not much you can do about it kind of stuck with me. So when a case of the mumps showed up at Whitworth, I wasn’t too concerned.

And then I looked up the symptoms.

I’m not going to go into them here, because if you’re a student of Whitworth University, you’ve probably already looked up the symptoms and decided that your semester’s as good as shot. You’ve had to submit your shot records, receive vaccinations for the mumps, or otherwise had your day ruined by yet another email that says another case of the mumps has been diagnosed at Whitworth and the student has been quarantined.

At any rate, it is important to note that it is absolutely pointless to worry about something you have no control over. Watch for symptoms, be careful while you’re on campus so you don’t expose yourself to more germs than necessary, wash your hands, all that is just fine. However, it is not okay to worry yourself sick over the possibility of catching an illness when you are already stressed over classes, work, clubs, and any other activities that you find yourself engaged in throughout the week

In an article focused on health anxiety, addresses the risks of obsessing over health, “If you constantly check your body for signs of illness, such as a rash or bump, you will eventually find something. It often won't be anything serious – it could be a natural body change, or you could be misinterpreting signs of anxiety (such as increased heart rate and sweating) as signs of a serious condition. However, the discovery tends to cause great anxiety and make you self-check even more.” If you are trying to find something wrong with your body, you will probably find it. Ask yourself whether or not the stress is worth it.

I wanted to discuss this issue because what I’ve written is very similar to what I have told a couple of friends in the last couple of weeks. Friends who are overly concerned with not catching anything that they let it stress them out beyond a point that is healthy. Anxiety is toxic. According to, “The very anxiety of what may happen will destroy the body. If you become excessively concerned about illness or health, that itself becomes an illness. An illness is something that restricts your life. That is why you don’t like it. But just the fear of illness also restricts your life.”

In short, I would advise you to educate yourself, be aware of the dangers that having this illness on campus presents, do your best to keep yourself healthy, but do not stress yourself out, because that is ultimately counter-productive.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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