I have really bad anxiety which correlates to my IBS. When I feel panic I can feel my stomach churning and a flare up coming. It feels like I live in a constant state of anxiety because of this.
My cousin recently got me a book called “Hope and Help for your Nerves” by Dr. Claire Weeks who is an Australian psychologist. She has helped dozens of patients heal their anxiety. She has also written other self help books if you want to look those up.
Dr. Weeks describes anxiety as not being anxious of impending doom, but rather being anxious about being anxious. She says the first time you feel those anxiety symptoms it stays with you and worry about feeling those physical symptoms again. The constant state of fearing anxiety then gives you more anxiety.
Weeks says this will take time to heal, but that instead of hiding or distracting from your anxiety you should confront it.
I’ve taken this approach to my anxiety. Rather than freak out because my stomach churns and my heart beats fast, I tell myself to relax and see how I feel in a few minutes. I have failed a few times but Dr. Weeks recognizes it takes time to heal nerves.
I just hope this advice helps others with IBS and anxiety.