Phobia taking blood pressure

by Jim
(Louisiana)

I have this problem taking my blood pressure. It's not just white coat syndrome, I have the phobia and fear when I am home and trying to take it. When my BP is taken, I go into a panic and the reading shoots up very high which causes additional fear and panic. I obsess about this night and day, to the point of panic when just thinking about taking my BP. My Dr. wants a record from home to be more relaxed but to no avail. I keep cancelling Dr's appointments because of the panic and extreme stress this causes. Diagnosed with anxiety and panic disorder. I have tried many, many meds. which have not helped, just added side effects. I have had this problem for about twenty years and would like to find relief and peace. Maybe someone could give some suggestions. Seeing a therapist and psychiatrist but little progress......thanks....Jim


Answer:

Phobias like this are more common than you may think. It can be really frustrating because the more you try to talk yourself out of becoming anxious, the more anxious you become.

Below are some relaxation exercises that might help because they involve re-training the body to respond differently. It takes most people a few weeks of daily practice to start to notice results.

I hope this helps!

Relaxation for Coping with Panic

Retraining the Amygdala

Anchoring

Biofeedback Therapy Relaxation

Deal with Squeamishness

Comments for Phobia taking blood pressure

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Oct 07, 2014
BP Phobia
by: Anonymous

I have the same problem. You are not alone. My thinking is ...I expect the BP to be high and it is. I can bring it down by continuing to take pressures until it comes down. But I also have tried various things and they don't work. It may be a deep seated fear of having a heart attack because of high BP for me. A doc now is trying to lower my TSH with westhroid. A high TSH (>3.0) can cause anxiety. Do a little research and you can see the best TSH values.

Oct 09, 2014
Me too
by: Trevor

Same here. The phobia is coupled with guilt. I've had it for 30 years and have recently decided to get anti-deps to deal with the anxiety.
I've meditated all my life and have found benefits in many areas but sadly not this one.

Oct 17, 2014
Same here
by: Anonymous

Seriously... I just think this stupid machine can make or break my day. If I could just get one good reading my day would be awesome! BIt I can't make it through the cuff filling up, I hit cancel. IF I don't hit cancel and it the cuffs stop to check my pulse and need to keep filling becausey BP is so high... I freak!!! How do I get over this? How can I get this fixed now!

Dec 22, 2014
blood pressure
by: Robbie

Nobody enjoys the idea of visiting a doctor. Studies suggest that your anxiousness levels can be a vital role in your systolic blood pressure rise. For some people it could be a difficult task to conquer the fear of blood pressure.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Robbie: EHR solutions

Jan 21, 2015
Same problem
by: Anonymous

Same problem here. I take my blood pressure lying in bed and try to relax as much as possible.
My doctor said that there is no big difference in pressure level if I sit on chair or lie in bed.
Its easier to relax in bed and pressure is lower.
The first measurement is always very high and take it many times to get it low.

Feb 08, 2015
Thought of high blood pressure can control my whole day.
by: Anonymous

I used to be able to take my bp at home and get good enough results. But just recently my fear is effecting those readings too. I just took apart my 13 yr old monitor to see if I could find something wrong with it. I saw no burnt wirings, BUT the delete instructions for the memory of readings would not make those readings delete. So I am hoping that means the machine is not working for bp readings, correctly, either. I do have some medical proof that I shouldn't have high blood pressure. Two years ago they did an echo and the tech told me it looked like the heart of a 16 yr old. (I am 66.)
I listen to relaxation tapes, which I love. I also just tried hypnotism but I am afraid that a quick fix like that wouldn't work and it didn't. It is so good to hear from others. This is a very lonely problem to have.

Feb 09, 2015
Me too!
by: Lynn

I have just found your website by chance. It is such a relief to find others with exactly the same, irrational, problem that I have re taking my BP. The problem is that it is so high when taken at the surgery that I am taking meds for high BP that I may not need. The problem is getting worse, but just knowing that I am not alone is a great help!

I won't give up and I am starting on a course of therapy soon. The best I feel is after doing a circuits class - when, bizaarely, my BP is probably at its highest. However, after physical exercise I feel more relaxed.

Feb 09, 2015
BP Phobics Group?
by: Anonymous

I am wondering if anyone is from the Chicago area. Maybe we could get together for more support? I used to be able to go to a group for phobics about 20 yrs. ago, but that is no longer available.

Feb 10, 2015
more relaxed
by: Anonymous

I feel more relaxed when I keep the Bible on Psalm 91 next to me while taking my bloodpressure. Take it a few times. Mine sometimes was high because of that fear, but I learned that God will protect me

Feb 10, 2015
So glad I'm Not Alone
by: Anonymous

It is so good to know that I'm not alone! I've been taking medication for High Blood pressure most of my adult life and started monitoring my BP at home over 30 years ago. Ive always had "white coat syndrome", so being able to bring my home readings to my doctor was a great help to her in adjusting my meds. Then, about three years ago I started having a phobia about taking my BP at home. I'm also prone to anxiety attacks and after getting a really high reading on my home BP monitor, I freaked out. Now I'm afraid to take my BP at home. I know it's not logical but it true. I am so glad I found this website. It's helped tremendously to know that I'm not alone and that I'm not crazy. Here's hoping we all get over (or get control over) this phobia soon.

Feb 13, 2015
What helps?
by: kb801

I am exactly like everyone here so i won't repeat - I just cancelled a dr's appointment for the same reason - I think finding the right doctor can make a huge difference. Also, to get the publics attention there has been a campaign to make everyone aware of high BP and I think often it is overdone and creates an anxiety that even minor increases are dangerous - they are not from what I've read. Your body can take rises to 200+/100+ and more without damage, and even then it takes time and you have time to treat it.

President Roosevelt finally died from it but he had readings of 250/150 for the last six months before it killed him. He went 4 years with averages around 195/110.

I'll try to find articles on this but its hard. If others can as well, please share.

The medical industry would cringe at what Im saying here because they are so afraid that people will think HBP is ok - its not.

But we have the reverse problem - we are way OVER afraid of it as it has become a phobia - I've pretty much had it all my life.

Keep in touch everyone! K

Feb 14, 2015
Contact Me
by: Anonymous

If anyone wants to directly contact me, so we can support each other with this despicable situation, please email me: [email protected]

Feb 16, 2015
Same here
by: Anonymous

I have white coat syndrome and like many who have posted here am now afraid of taking it at home. I can't even stand the sound it makes as the cuff inflates around my arm. I am 29 and have had GAD (generalized anxiety disorder) for 10 years.

Feb 16, 2015
Phobia Help
by: kb801

I have a doctors appointment tomorrow - wish me luck - I told him last time that I've always had this phobia and he was okay with it but every time I think about it I want to cancel the appointment but I need it for other reasons - I bought a book that at least helps some called "Master your Panic" and take back your life by Denise Beckfield - Its for panic disorder and situational phobia, which is what we have.

I read an article about WCH which indicated a study that deep breathing can bring your BP down if you have WCH, and it seems not to work for people who don't have it-among other things this book teaches deep breathing techniques, ways to stop "catastrophe" type thinking and more. It has helped me some at home to take it and reduce the fear.

Feb 19, 2015
Blood Pressure Phobia
by: Anonymous

I'm so glad that I'm not alone here...thanks to all of you for sharing your fears of having your blood pressure taken. I am 38 and have anxiety and panic attacks quite often and it appears most of my anxiousness comes from the dumb blood pressure machine. If I just look at it or think about having it taken, I can feel my blood pressure rising. It's very frustrating! I see a psychologist for my anxiety and panic disorder, and we are going to be working on this issue next week. I'll let everyone know what I find out.... Here's to a low blood pressure reading! Maybe we should all get together and practice on keeping it low! Lol....

Feb 19, 2015
Blood Pressure Phobia
by: Anonymous

I'm glad to see that I'm not alone with the blood pressure issue! I too dread going to the doctor just because of the blood pressure machine. I never think about anything negative coming out of my doctor's appointment, but a high blood pressure reading. It's frustrating! At 38 years old, I fear the worse about that dumb machine and would like to cancel my appointment too. I have been experiencing anxiety and panic disorder most of my life...some years, months, days are worse than others. However, I found this good psychologist who has a plan for me to get rid of my blood pressure phobia. We start next week working on this, so I will keep everyone posted. Until then, here's to LOW blood pressure! Maybe we should all get together and take our blood pressure, hold hands and sing Kumbaya??

Feb 22, 2015
BP phobia
by: Anonymous

Thanks for all the comments - Let me give you some encouragement - I've been fighting this most of my entire adult life. Had severe Panic Attacks for 8 years in my 40's - talking about it helped, getting off of caffeine, sugars etc. & taking beta blockers for a short time under a doctor's care also helped. In short, I'm fine with the Panic attacks, but I'm left with this ridiculous BP problem. What's the good news? I'm 76 & healthy as a horse - so you can say it hasn't hurt my overall health. Just stopped full time teaching to run my church's counseling center - which can be very stressful. Isn't that ironic - a counselor with this BP problem . However, it has helped in my counseling of Panic attacks,etc. - cause I really GET IT!!! I am going to try some relaxation tapes & read more info - this was the very first site I've tried & I'm not a quitter - Also , I am a believer & I believe God has gotten me this far- I can't, He can & I've got to let Him help me!!!!

Feb 24, 2015
Help for Blood Pressure Phobia
by: Anonymous

I think I have some information that may help - I went to my doctor (I avoided going for years because of my BP phobia) and convinced him NOT to take my BP at the office but take my readings from home -If you all think yo are bad how about a reading last month of 207/104 at the dr's office and 125/78 that evening at home - is that crazy or what?? It took me a while to just get over the home BP phobia - try beta blocker (atenolol) and deep breathing - they did a study of white coat Hypertension and found that deep breathing for minute or so would lower top number by up to 20 point and bottom 5-8 points - this DIDNT work for those who did not have the white coat affect.

Also buy a hem-sync CD and listen before taking reading - it send 2 different wavelengths of sound into your ears and produces a definite calming affect that has been verified in studies - I recommend Eben Alexander's sound CD's called "seeking heaven" it not really religious but he did have a NDE and he is trying to replicate the sounds in semi-sync - I have found that my BP is a full 20 points lower after listening for 25 minutes

And if you haven't read my previous comments about how your BP can go really high and not be an issue as long as you figure a way to have it controlled long term. When it is only experienced when taken BP they called it a "benign condition" - check out the sites I have listed below, good luck and keep in touch

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/482891_3

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=master+panic+denise+beckfield

http://www.ebenalexander.com/books/seeking-heaven-sound-journeys-into-the-beyond/

Mar 30, 2015
A second reading
by: Anonymous

Trust me, I hear all of you. Lately I was at the doctors office waiting results of some diagnostic testing. Stressful, to say the least. Before hearing the "verdict" my blood pressure was very high. After finding out everything was OK, and about a half hour later, my pressure was taken again. The systolic pressure was down almost 40 points.
Do remember guys, anxiety is being found to have a strong genetic link. We need to lighten up on ourselves. You are probably brighter than most and a good deal more sensitive. Those are a gifts.

May 06, 2015
is bp phobia an abnormal behavior.
by: Anonymous

Yours are very similar to mine.I'm very nervous everytime i hear about taking bp.Everytime i see bp machines I freak out.I cannot control myself and i hate it why there's bp thing.thanks to all of you because i'm not alone with this rare feelings.Im praying that i can overcome this.Help me please....

May 06, 2015
Is bp phobia an abnormal behavior.
by: Anonymous

Yours are very similar to mine.Everytime i hear taking bp I easily freak out.When i see bp machines i feel nervous.I hate to hear about this and im thinking why there's bp thing.When i was hospitalized ,I requested my mother to tell the nurses not to say the readings so that i will not be aware of my bp.When I read all your opinions,thank God im not alone. Im praying that i can get over this. Help me please....

May 06, 2015
Is bp phobia an abnormal behavior.
by: Anonymous

Yours are very similar to mine.Everytime i hear taking bp I easily freak out.When i see bp machines i feel nervous.I hate to hear about this and im thinking why there's bp thing.When i was hospitalized ,I requested my mother to tell the nurses not to say the readings so that i will not be aware of my bp.When I read all your opinions,thank God im not alone. Im praying that i can get over this. Help me please....

May 06, 2015
Me too!
by: Anonymous

I have the same issue as everyone else.

I had a chiropractor appointment on Monday with a new doctor that was looking to the visit. Once I got in the exam room and saw the blood pressure monitor sitting there my BP went through the roof. I explained to the assistant that my BP was going to be high and explained my situation. She took it and the DR came back in and I explained my situation again and he stated it was high and that he was going to take it again at the end of the visit. I was stressed out the whole time I was there and couldn't get out of there fast enough! So much for a relaxing environment! I have a BP reader at home and am going to try taking my BP several times a day to get over this fear.

May 09, 2015
Great article but still worrying.
by: Mary

Could this be why mine keeps going up when I check it at home because I have that fear it's going to be mega high still? I suffer from severe anxiety and panic disorders and depression along with HBP. I am on metoprolol generic Lopressor and Alprazolam generic 2 mg 4x daily.
It's been shooting up higher since we just moved & seeing my BP up makes it worse.

May 19, 2015
I'm so happy to find this
by: Anonymous

I've felt so alone with this problem for so long, and it's really helpful to know that other people experience it too. It's kind of humiliating to be so afraid of a machine that's supposed to help keep you healthy! I'm trying some approaches, including phobia therapy and sedative teas, to see if they make a difference. I'll keep everyone posted.

THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH!!!

May 19, 2015
Anyone live near me?
by: Anonymous

I am thinking that if I had a "partner", we could practice taking our blood pressures, together. Does anyone live in the Chicago area? If so, please contact me at [email protected]

Jun 19, 2015
Try This
by: Anonymous

To cope with the anxiety of having your blood pressure either taken by a medical person or yourself try the following deep breathing exercise.

1. Close your mouth and take in a deep breath through your nose. Hold for count of 2.

2. Open your mouth slightly and breath out for a count of 8.

Do this just before your blood pressure is taken. If a medical person is going to take your BP ask them to hold off until you finish your breathing exercises.

If you do this exercise multiple times one right after the other you might feel a little lightheaded for a few moments.




Jul 01, 2015
Thank Goodness!!
by: Anonymous

Everything here coincides with my experience! Doc wants me to see a cardiologist but already having gone through a battery of tests over the years, know the high reading is down to bp phobia rather than anything more sinister.Reading taken by myself earlier this evening 202/96, on third reading (within 5 minutes), 154/84. Doc refutes the idea that I can give myself 'white coat' syndrome but I know it is a reality. This site gives reassurance, thanks to you follow sufferers, just wish there was an easy antidote!

Jul 02, 2015
Major bp phobe
by: Anonymous

Read all y'all comments. I hear ya n sympathize 100%! Today my reading was 176/107 at the dentist! Lord have mercy! I can FEEL the fear. I Fear the fear! Hate that feeling of dread n panic. My heart beats so terrible fast. There's GOT to be a way to conquer this. There oughta be seminars for ppl like us where we all get educated about bp, what it means, how high can we go, then take readings all together as a sort of support group. Years ago they didn't try to fit those readings into such smaller numbers, did they? Wonder how they treated back then? Good grief I agonize for days before an appt. n sometimes cancel. It's so stupid, but also horrific. A person just has to go once in awhile for other stuff. Can't stand the stifling fear. Also don't trust many bp meds. If you read the pill book, often side effects of blood pressure meds are High Blood Pressure! So tired of this. I'm a believer n pray for help. Feel sad n embarrassed, but fearing still! A spirit of fear is not of God! UGH!

Jul 04, 2015
White coat won't kill you!
by: Kevin801

Phobias are not rational but continue her exposure with relaxation exercises eventually help - I was under the south tower on 9/11 directing and running with others while prices of the building falling on us- I guarente you my BP was Lower than at the dr office,crazy, embarrassing . I avoid having medical procedures if the take BP - had 2 hour surgery with implant cutting into gums etc but Just fine because he didn't do BP!!! So nuts. I can't give simple solution but read my previous recommendations and know that WC HBP is much less dangerous than we all believe. It goes to similar levels with exercise and your body is built to take high levels, just not constantly. Man wouldn't have survived if our body couldn't take high levels - the cave men had to run all the time,we are made this way-remember we didn't have any meds for BP in the early 1900's - Roosevelt had BP average of 195/110 for over 4 years before he died.

I'm not saying it's safe to have high BP, but white coat is called a "benign " condition in medical books. I've been in a number of emergency landings but have no fear of flying- most people with phobias are more intelligent than aver - here's to all us smart people!

Jul 07, 2015
Me too
by: Lesley

Oh boy,I thought it was just me,such a relief to read of others the same.I use a wrist monitor at home as it lessens anxiety when taking measurements,result is the same.I play Hayday or something on my iPad when doing it and tell myself so what if it is high,there is always a BP pill to lower it.Auto suggestion is the key,when you go to docs take your own readings for the last week so they can discount their machine.

Jul 08, 2015
Me too!
by: Anonymous

I thought i was alone in this. My doctor also suggested I take my pressure at home but I still feel the same anxiety. I too have avoided the doctors office because of this. I try so hard to talk myself out of this with no avail. I have tried everything and now i'm concerned how i'll ever get a true reading

Jul 22, 2015
Just Stop Checking It and live
by: Nick

Hi I just read all the comments and so glad to see more people have this issues and not just me. People don't understand what we go through its so hard having a phobia like this. I fear anything about blood pressure. I used to check mine at home and it would start high but always come down and that would satisfy me because I knew I just have WCH. I have found a good doctor who understands and he said I'm ok. This helps a lot. I had evey test done on my heart and it was ok. I have learned to just stop checking it now because I learned that when I'm calm its good and when I'm stressed obviously it's gonna be high so why check it? Anyway good luck to everyone and hopefully we can conquer this fear. It's the reaction to what the doctors say that frightens us more I think. Are they gonna put us in the hospital? Etc. I hate having to convince another doctor of my phobia and why it's high. I try to not think about it anymore. Have faith and live life. Laughter is the best medicine

Aug 03, 2015
Dread my review date!
by: Anon

It's great to read all of your comments as I have had this fear since my doctor put me on medication which made me feel ill about 10 years ago.
My husband used to take my BP at home and I told him to write it down and not tell me, as not knowing what it was helped a lot.
Since he died 4 years ago I have had a lot of heart tests and have a blocked artery which luckily has made its own bypass.
I am now on medication for my BP and last year at the doctors the lowest it went was 148/78 although he watched it shoot up and said I had white coat syndrome.
After going to the doctor today he said my BP was sky high and he got me to sit and breathe in and out slowly.
This got the pressure down to 184/84.
He then suggested a 2 day monitor which I said I couldn't tolerate, so I volunteered to take it twice a day for a month.
I am now seriously considering getting a monitor with a 60 day memory and then I don't have to look at the readings.
It would be a very good idea to have a group of people who could support each other in this and work together to overcome our fears.
Thank you for reading this.

Aug 22, 2015
We are not alone.
by: Melissa Nielsen

I've had this for 23 years. The worst us when your doctor freaks out. I am able to take mine at home now and it is around 110/70. Today it was 198/105. In the "crisis" range. I know how irrational it is but my brain takes over and I can't relax. Thinking about going to a psychologist for help. It's do embarrassing when you refuse for people to take it. They act like you're a weirdo. I always end up babbling and feel affected and judged. So happy to know I'm not alone.

Aug 29, 2015
A phobia for Life
by: Kevin B

How is everyone doing? I had a doctors appointment yesterday and, as usual was okay with everything but BP - I have found a great doctor who will not take it at the office but only my home readings, where thru relaxation, mental imagery, equi-sync binaral sound (see my previous comments about this) I can do it at home without freaking out - I do have hypertension and take meds for it but always have had White Coat Syndrome - last year was 211/97 at doctors office and 115/72 that evening at home - so I have it bad - but I have managed it pretty well by finding the right doctor - good luck to all of you

Aug 31, 2015
Tired of this!
by: Anonymous

I'm so glad I found this website! I'm 38 years old and i have this issue for several years....as many of you have posted..... I avoid going to the doctor, dentist ect.....because I freak out when they take my BP.....i feel hopeless and i don't know how to overcome this fear ..... I've tried some relaxation things but doesn't work....but I'm glad I'm not the only one that feel this way....

Sep 01, 2015
This helps me!
by: Terri

Thank you all for sharing your experiences. I feel so much better that I'm not alone with this fear. I bought the anxiety program called the Linden Method and it's been the most helpful thing I have ever done. It hasn't taken all my fear of going to the dr.'s away but has greatly helped me overall. It is an amazing program that makes perfect sense. I hope it might help you all and continue to help me too!
Thanks again for helping me feel not so crazy and alone!

Sep 03, 2015
Fed up and fighting back!
by: Fightingthegoodfightoffaith

I'm so glad I decided to do a Google search today of this topic to try and find some help. All of your posts were very comforting, just in knowing that I'm not the only one who's fighting this ridiculous fear!

It infuriates me that I am afraid of having my blood pressure taken! It used to be just at the doctors office, but, as so many of you have mentioned, it's the same way at home now. I am a Christian and I know that fear is not of God, so this really makes me mad that I'm having such a hard time overcoming this fight with myself.
I'm not afraid of anything else but taking my blood pressure. How stupid is that?! I know full well that if I just relax, my blood pressure is fine, but, when I get all freaked out it goes way high and freaks me out and the doctor. It's just so dumb!!

The sound of my blood pressure wrist cuff freaks me out so bad that it causes the cuff to show an error message because my blood pressure is too high for it to measure it! That's comforting! :p

I went to the emergency room one time a few years ago because my blood pressure was really high and my husband and I were worried. I was under a lot of stress and when I had the pressure checked there it was over 200! They kind of freaked out about it and asked me if that was normal. I said no so they sent me up to the waiting room to wait my turn to see a doctor. The emergency room was really full and I had to sit for over an hour. My husband was with me so I just leaned against him and did deep breathing and praying and calmed myself down. As a matter of fact, I felt so calm after awhile that we decided to leave and went out and got a milkshake and had a good time. When I went home I checked my blood pressure and it was perfectly fine! Lesson learned!

Now I just need to remember those things when I try to take it these days. I find comfort and peace here in knowing I'm not the only one and that it really won't kill me or stroke me out!
I'm still looking for answers.
Thanks for sharing everybody!

Sep 10, 2015
glad Im not alone
by: Sue J

the nurse took my bp this morning...it was the usual nightmare for me...ive been like this for 40 years....187/111...came down to 160/98 in a couple of minutes...now have to have the dreaded machine at home...I HATE being like this

Sep 13, 2015
Me too!
by: Diane

Glad you are all sharing your experiences. I have had this problem for 10 years in the Dr office. Low readings at home. Now it is affecting my readings at home as well. Trying relaxation but still can't take my mind of that darn BP machine!

Sep 16, 2015
I am with you all!
by: Anonymous

I agree with all of the above. If would be really nice if some of us could get together to talk about this, or practice taking our blood pressures together. If anyone lives in the Chicagoland area, we could reserve a room at a library and try this out. I have to play so many mind games with myself in order to be able to take my own pressure. I don't let the "doctor" do it. Maybe IF the doctor would do it, it would be better than some of those nasty nurses! [email protected]

Sep 17, 2015
Hate it
by: Anonymous

I have to have a hernia operation but I'm more scared of them not doing it because of my blood pressure going to be high from fear of surgery. I've never had surgery before. What happens if your blood pressure is too high because you're scared and anxious? I know my bp is good normally at home but anything doctor related it goes up! Do they give you a pill that lowers it before surgery and calms you down?

Sep 20, 2015
Your Operation
by: Anonymous

It's natural for most people to have a raise in blood pressure when faced with an operation.
Just remember that you'll be put to sleep and wake up with it all over, and believe me you'll be so relaxed then from the anaesthetic that your blood pressure won't be a problem!

Sep 23, 2015
Thanks!
by: Luke

Have had high BP for 8 yrs or so. I'm 34. Started taking readings at home because of what might be White Coat but I still have serious anxiety about it.

Maybe I'm causing my high blood pressure with anxiety about high blood pressure. Why not?
Couldn't find much on this subject but found this site.

Nice to hear that I'm not alone.

Why isn't this possibility talked about more?

Sep 24, 2015
Support
by: ScaredofBP

I'm 38 years old and have high blood pressure. But also have extreme white coat syndrome, so no one knows how high. I'm terrified of both having it taken at the doctors and at home. Bought a home machine and get anxious every time I look at it. My new doctor seems understanding (ie. she didn't ship me to the hospital the other day), but the fear consumes me now.

I'm glad I found this forum - your stories have helped me feel less alone in this ridiculous phobia. I'm working with a therapist to overcome it, but do worry about how long that might take.

Thanks everyone!

Sep 24, 2015
finding a doctor who understands
by: Georgia

I wish I could find a doctor's office that knew how to deal with this issue properly. My problem is that I probably do need treatment for hereditary hbp but the reaction to my overly high readings at the office have made it very difficult to take care of. The worst part is the nurses who tsk tsk every reading and when I tell them it's lower at home they say it should be low there too. I like my current doctor fairly well, but she keeps insisting I come back every three months until we can get a good reading in the office, even when I'm getting good readings at home. I passed a 24 hour test and was so happy to be able to stay on the one medication I was taking long term, but then she said I had to get blood tests and go back in another 3 months for a check up. I couldn't bear it, so her response was to not renew my medication. How is that helpful in any way?

Since then I've tried every lifestyle modification I can think of and have kept it in the borderline range. It's been higher lately at home though, so I really should go back to the doctor but am filled with dread thinking about it. I have no idea how to find a doctor who is sympathetic to this type of situation and insists the nursing staff is as well.

The reaction to a stressed out high reading in the office is fear mongering, as if I need to be scared into treatment when being scared is actually keeping me from treatment. I'm getting more stressed about it, and it's starting to make me fear the home readings as well. If anyone's found an understanding doctor, how did you do it?

Thanks.

Sep 25, 2015
Relax
by: Anonymous

I found a good doctor and the first thing I said to them on the phone was about my fear of having my blood pressure checked. I check it at home and keep track I told them and bring in your own readings. My doctor was cool about it and said my home reading were better then his. Everyone's blood pressure goes up when in a scary situation. It's the fight or flight response that triggers your body to go crazy and shoot up your blood pressure.
I even went to a psychologist about it and she gave me the best advice. She said why are you taking your blood pressure all the time? Did your doctor tell you to do this? Because I used to check always. I said no but I need to check it so I can have peace of mind and show my doctors it's good and not high like in the office. My doctor even got mine down after he was understanding and said not to worry it's all in my head.

The psychologist told me our bodies can't sustain a high blood pressure the way it is when we are scared to death and it shoots up at the office and at home when we're so anxious about it. This about how low it goes when you're asleep or really calm on the couch watching TV or something. The best thing to do is just try and relax and don't think about it.

If you check it don't look at the readings at all and keep doing this until you're ok with the actual feeling of having it checked then slowly u can go back after a month or so and look at the readings. I know I get alarmed at the first high reading then I freak out but the key is to keep calm and take a couple more.

Sep 26, 2015
How True, Relax
by: Anonymous

How true, Relax,

I posted earlier about havng to take my BP at home for a month for the doctor.
I was petrified at first but I took a good friend's BP first and then he took mine.
When I discovered it wasn't as high as I thought I took it again myself after a couple of minutes.
I made it into a project working out an Excel chart with a graph with blood pressure and pulse rate.
I discovered the lowest reading was in the late evening when I was sleepy, it never bothered me taking it then but in the morning it would be higher.I was determined however to get it down and on the 3rd reading I usually did.
I was really proud of my accomplishment and couldn't wait to show my chart to the doctor but on the morning of my appointment he rang and said he wasn't well and would I take an average figure and give it to him over the phone.
When in town I dropped the chart into the clinic so he would see it later.
I now take my BP occasionally when relaxed as I don't want to leave it for another year.
Before I first took my BP I had booked an appointment with a CB therapist but by the time I went there I had overcome my fear myself as I knew I had to.

Sep 28, 2015
Doctor's Appt.
by: Anonymous

I have an appt. tomorrow. It's a new doctor. So here we go again, another situation in which I have to explain why I don't have my bp taken. It's like opening a can of worms. I really do get tired of having to go through this. In previous posts I have wished that we could get together for support. I am in the Chicago area and has also included an email address. I have also placed a craigslist ad to get together with people with this problem. I feel that it is the best way for me to get over this phobia. A nurse with the problem actually replied to my ad, but then didn't follow through with a possible meeting. I had suggested meeting in a library, where you can reserve a room. But no, it didn't happen. If I could just once have my bp taken at a doctor's office, and it be normal, I would be so over this problem!

Sep 30, 2015
BP Insurance exam
by: kb801

How did you do at the doctor's office? I am trying to get life insurance but they want to send a nurse to "examine" me and I know it will screw everything up - I tired to get them to take my doctors notes on this to no avail.

I didn't go to the doctor for over 3 years because of this - Can you fill me in on what the nurse said?

At least I found this new doctor who now will take my readings from home - I had to get aggressive with his nurse but after twice saying "NO" and getting to talk to the doctor first, it worked! Finding the right doc is critical - if one give you a problem, find another one! Stand up for yourself!

You can't get over this by willpower alone or we would have it solved by now!

Oct 02, 2015
Doctor's Appt. Results
by: Anonymous

The doctor didn't care about my blood pressure. I told the new doctor that I had the problem and she didn't mind not taking it at all. But then I got bold and decided to have her do it anyway. Because I had thought if I could just get a reading done once, which was normal for me, I could take that record with me wherever I went. It's didn't work. It was high, but she didn't care, just sort of laughed (in a way). This is a "vein" doctor and I could see she was really interested in making money. I am so tired of trying to prove to doctors that I have normal blood pressure. I do have a hard time taking it at home too, but I can get a normal reading with much anxiety. My pulse goes up 20-30 over normal, so I know the bp reading is even lower, than the reading I am getting. [email protected]

Oct 02, 2015
Ditto
by: Mojojojo

Just got put on bp meds today for the first time in my life. Had white coat syndrome for a while now. Took forever to get my BP down during the diuretic test. I'm laughing about it now because that's all I feel I can do. It's going to be so much fun waking up every morning now taking my BP with my trusty sphygmomanometer! Did I spell that right?

Oct 04, 2015
Wow...Others like me!
by: Ron

I always had white Coat and have routinely had doctor visits with 170/95 for years now.
I would then go home and take it...and it was OK around 130/80. So up until about 5 years ago, it was just high at the doctors....but gradually it has changed and now I am age 65... on Metroprolol 100 Mgs ER and still have "pressure attacks" at home where the pressure goes to 180/90 when I first put the cuff on. Most of the time it will go down to below 140/85 IF I sit and deep breath for about 15 to 20 minutes. Everyone tells me to relax and not think about it, but the thought of just taking it now gives me a high reading and sometimes it's a "fight" to get it down to where I can at least sleep at night without thinking I need to go to the emergency room! Funny, My Doctor wants me to take it at least 1 time a day.

Oct 05, 2015
Relief to see others in the same boat!!
by: Gilly

Like many of us fellow sufferers initially started getting high readings at docs but now just as bad at home. Latest doc has advised to stop taking it as much (previously asked to take readings six times a day and avearge out!), fortnightly now considered enough! Have seen cardiologists where nothing found so reckon its just a phobia that needs to be controlled although HOW is the big question!!? Am now scared to take at all as can feel pressure rising as soon as I put on the cuff!! Am sure I would have keeled over dead by now were it to be something serious but do wish there was some local group (I live in the East Midlands, UK) where people could meet up and try to work out how to address this debilitating problem.

Oct 05, 2015
Would be so happy to get together with others about this.
by: Noreen

One way I could get over this phobia is to go to the doctor everyday and have them take it a few times. But, as you all know, that is not going to be possible, with all the red tape and rules. But I do also think that if I could get together with others who understand this situation, it would improve. Unfortunately, I cannot find people near me. But I keep asking...Chicagoland area, [email protected]

Oct 05, 2015
Ideas And Meet Ups
by: ScaredofBP

It seems like turqoise in Chicago is super keen about meeting up with others with this issue - I'm actually surprised to have found so many people on the internet with this issue. Equally surprised there are no groups already. If I was in Chicago, I'd be open to it. But I'm not - I'm in Toronto.

I'm working with a therapist who does cognitive behavioral therapy to de-sensitize me to the home BP machine. We're also working on visualizations to help me go to the doctor and get a good reading - after I can get a good reading at home. I bought my home machine 2 weeks ago and am only now starting to feel less anxious about even going near it. I certainly have not used it yet.

My suggestion - find a therapist (if you haven't already) who does this kind of therapy and who specializes in anxiety issues. It seems to be slowly helping me, and I'm hopeful.


Oct 05, 2015
Oops
by: ScaredofBP

By turquoise, I meant Noreen. I just noticed her name, but have noticed her email on each post. Sorry about that!

If someone is in Chicago, I do urge you to reach out to her. Such a great idea.

Oct 05, 2015
Not white coat
by: Melissa Nielsen

I've had this since 1993. I used to call it white coat syndrome but now identify it as irrational phobia. I used to get a rapid pulse at home and now I'm fine. You just have to do it. It slowly becomes easier. The problem with this phobia is that you can't hide or avoid it! I've kept records of before during and after that basically proves it's just at the doctor. I think it definitely helps that it has a name and we are not alone. [email protected]

Oct 06, 2015
Yea this sucks
by: Anonymous

This site definitely helps. It's tough when you get those high readings because it sends you in panic mode and then there's just no point in taking more. You feel like you're on top of the world when the reading are good though. I find that if you exercise first like go walking or running for a couple miles and then check your pressure after a while it's the best. Something about your mood. After I exercise I'm in a good mood and my pressure is usually at its best. The morning right after you wake up is a good time to check it too because you are more calm and not anxious.

Oct 06, 2015
Yea
by: Anonymous

It's funny how I don't mind pain. Like getting my wisdom teeth removed awake as long as they don't check my blood pressure. At the dentist I'm fine too. If only they could find a faster way to check blood pressure that didn't involve putting a cuff around the arm and pumping it up. Something fast like a scan thermometer lol

Oct 17, 2015
This has just started happening to me too!
by: Judy

I've been battling high BP since 2010, and it's been successful with medication for the past 5 years. Recently I felt some heart palpitations, and after a couple of weeks of feeling them, I realized it wasn't smart to ignore this, so I went to the doctor. Well, of course my pressure was pretty high and he doubled my dose of metoprolol ER succinate, from 50 to 100. I started checking my pressure at home and I used to have no problems checking at home and got fantastic readings before, years ago. But now since this thing with the palpitations and the doubling up on the dosage, every time I try to check my bp at home, I start to feel the panic rise in my chest and I know it's going to be a really super high number, and it always is! I know it's because of the panic, and I start to try to watch something funny or listen to music to take my mind off of it, but it never helps. Like I can't trick my mind or something. I can't redo the readings because they'll just get higher and higher for me. I have no great advice but just wanted to add to the conversation and I can't believe how common this is! How are those of us with true high BP ever supposed to get an accurate reading anymore when we can't even test ourselves at home, where they're supposed to be lower? Has anyone found it helpful to take a break from it? I feel like I want to do that, but in a way, that might be dangerous and not something to ignore. My fear is it getting so high I'll stroke out or have a heart attack. I'm not afraid of the actual machine, I'm afraid of how high I'm going to see those numbers go and like someone said, it'll ruin my day because then I wonder if I have to go to the ER or something. Oh my, this is driving me insane.

Oct 17, 2015
Phobia with Blood Pressue
by: Bvear

I am so glad I came upon this site. I have BP phobia and it has gotten worse over the years especially after menopause. I am 61 and my number are very high at the drs office...and like many here, I can't take it at home without going into panic mode. I just had some outpatient surgery and my BP was high and then down a little and then spiked again. The office stressed me out so much that I had to take some anxiety meds when I got home. And until reading these posts I was having a difficult time releasing my BP fears and that something was going to happen to me. Like alot of other people here I have had a multitude of tests all normal. I have also been on all kinds of BP meds. I am considering seeing a therapist to help me work thru this...thanks everyone for your comments...I wish I could find a local support group in the Springifled, MA area.

Oct 17, 2015
Relax
by: Anonymous

I have taken a long break from checking mine and I don't miss it. I used to check it weekly and it would start a little high but I would get it down and then I thought why do I bother checking it always? It always comes down when I'm calm and relaxed so I don't have high bp. My doctor didn't even tell me to check it he agreed it's high when anxious but normal when relaxed. Everyone's bp goes up high in a stressful situation just accept that fact. Our bodies are pretty amazing and strong. They can sustain a high bp for a long time but also know that these crazy spikes from fear and panic don't last forever. Our bodies can't maintain that high intensity level and will eventually come back down to normal. Forget the constant fears and checking. A therapist told me to stop checking and throw away the machine. It became a compulsive behavior and that's not good. Take up a hobby, go to church, get on a good exercise regimen. Your body and mind will thank you and you will see great results. Don't give up and stay strong. Fear is not knowing God. With God anything is possible. So just your mind right and live a healthy happy lifestyle.

Oct 22, 2015
UPDATE to my story from last week. Happy Ending!
by: Judy W.

I want to update my experience. I went to see a PA (Physician's Assistant) today about this. I'm very glad I went and want to encourage you all to make an appt. If you are very upfront about the issues you're going through, and if you find someone who is compassionate and willing to sit and take the time with you, you can find help. You don't need to suffer alone and you shouldn't because there is help out there and good people to help you. This is a copy of the email sent to my friend just now, so it may sound a little weird in spots, but I so wanted to share my story as I think it's very important and if I can help even one person get through this horrible phobia, it will be a blessing.

Here is my story:


When I went to see the PA, she was so AWESOME!

On the way there, I had to pop a xanax because I felt my panic starting. OMG! Stoplight- XANAX!

So I walk in and the nurse comes at me with the BP cuff. I said, why don't we just wait for Denise to do that because that's what I'm here about and I'm having issues and just looking at that thing is freaking me out right now! She walked away like I was a crazy lady. I did not care. :)))

So the PA, Denise, comes in, she's maybe late 30's early 40's. Super sweet. She sits down and starts talking and I start at the beginning telling her everything, and pretty soon I'm crying like a stupid idiot. She calmed me down and we just talked and by the time she was ready to actually take my BP reading, I felt much calmer. It was like 153/84, which actually isn't so bad, considering I've been up over 100 on my bottom number before!!!

I'm glad you told me to take my machine with me. We compared it with her reading, and she said while my machine is the best and the one they recommend to their patients, it doesn't work for me. huh??? She said the way my veins in my arms are, it's very very hard to listen to those last beats and to get an accurate reading, you have to really be trained and listen. The machine doesn't do that. Remember when I told you my numbers are always better at the doctor's office? That's why!!!

We used my machine, and I was at 153/96 on it! She did it with her cuff again, and I was at 153/84 again. So....12 points off is a HUGE difference, especially that bottom number!!!!!! So, I'm still on the high side, but not as terrible as I thought. She added another BP medication for me to take when I wake up, and the doctor ok'd it, I already take the other one when I go to bed.

I hadn't eaten before I went, so even though I'd had coffee only, she considered it a fast, it was 5 pm by this time, and so they took a whole blood panel of everything. She checked my neck with the stethoscope, my heart, lungs, ankles for swelling, I mean, she was as good as any doctor ever! And sweet and patient with me! What a great experience!

So now that I know my machine is off I really can't trust it and it's brand new, so I went into Walgreens to pick up my new meds and talked to the manager about it. They'll return it for me no problem.

I have to go again next week to see her again to see how my pressure is, and then maybe do that for awhile, ya know, every week, every month, every few months, you get the picture. But if I'm not going to be checking at home anymore, it's no biggie for me to do that. I just hope they aren't going to charge me a co-pay each time!! Maybe the first couple times because I'll probably wanna talk with her, but I can't imagine that if I went in there just to get my pressure checked they'd charge me all the time, but we'll see.

So, anyway, it was a good day and I'm really so glad I went. I feel so much more relaxed now, no more panic. I felt like such a stupid idiot, crying, and she asked if anything else was going on bad in my life, and I said that no I have such a good life, it's embarrassing and crazy that I've become so fixated on something so stupid, but, ya know, she didn't seem judgey at all. She was very compassionate and I'm sure she's seen it all anyway, worse than me. So, that's what happened! :))

Oct 24, 2015
Yes, take a break.
by: noreen

The less I take my bp, the better off I am. One thing that seems to have helped, is getting the wrist monitor. Since it isn't squeezing my arm, I have less reaction and acceptable readings. A doctor suggested I get this one. And, I've seen it being used at another doctor's office. I don't let the doctor's office take my bp, anymore. I know it will be high, so why do it and ruin my day, my life!

Oct 27, 2015
Scared to check again
by: Anonymous

So I havnt checked my bp since last December and I had an anxiety attack and it was high then so my wife got fed up with me checking and took the machine away since. I've been thinking about it on and off and it's kind of good that she took it away. I used to check it like once a month and it was usually pretty good until I started worrying about it one day and other health things like moles and going to get checked at a dermatologist. I had that on my mind and was checking it and it was all over the place because I was worrying about miles etc. well miles checked out and here I am almost a year later and so scared to even check my bp again. I fear the worst that it's gonna be sky high and I should go to the hospital or something. I avoid anything medical like its the plague but I went to a new doctor last year and everything was ok. He understood my anxiety caused my bp spikes and it was usually good at home. Now I'm faced with the fear of checking it again. How can I get over this and just be normal?

Oct 28, 2015
How to cure a phobia...
by: Noreen

The best way to cure a phobia is to do that thing.
I read somewhere else, just to take the bp, but don't look at the reading. Just do it one time, over days, to get used to the action. After a time of practicing, when you are at a high moment, then look at those readings from the memory function of the monitor. This, as well as using the wrist monitor, has helped me. I seem to do better if I am paying attention to something else while I am taking my bp...talking to a friend, watching the boob tube, etc.

Oct 28, 2015
Relieved to find this thread...
by: Kelly

Like everyone else on here seemingly I thought I was the only one with this problem. Would be good to know just how widespread it actually is as some medics act as if they have never encountered it before. I was lucky to find this today as just had a horrible shock. I was supposed to have an exercise test for the ectopic heartbeats I have been experiencing for several months, and no one told me in advance that I'd need to be on a BP monitor throughout... (I'd already explained to cardiac specialist that I had phobia). They were very kind in the unit and said it would be OK if I just had one test at the beginning, and although a lovely nurse held my hand through the ordeal the result was 208/115!!! This despite fairly normal readings done at home in recent weeks.
Consequently they were unable to do the test and I am left feeling worse than ever. How I hate being like this. Have even had CBT which got me as far as taking my own readings (although I have to get someone else to look at results) but after today's shock I don't think I'll ever dare take a reading again!

Oct 28, 2015
Finally checked! Good news
by: Anonymous

So I had the machine on my living room table for a couple days and just lookin at it made me anxious. I was irritable all week because I knew I wanted to check it because I havn't in so long. It was a nice break not checking it. I started with just putting the cuff on and then taking it off for one day. Then the next day I plugged the machine in and just practiced putting the cuff on and that was that. The third day I was really anxious and said I'm just gonna check it a few times but not look at it. I felt the pressure on my arm and my heart beating fast but I did not look at the numbers. Just took it and then turned if off. Just doing this a few times made me feel better so I went for a jog and then took a shower and I was in a good mood and good spirits because at least I was taking baby steps. I sat down and checked it again a few times without looking but really wanted to peek at the numbers So eventually I peaked when I felt calmer and saw it was 140/75 which made me really happy so I slot checking it after and brought it down to 125/75 and that was that. I'm so happy now. I got over my fear with baby steps. I also would start looking at the numbers as the cuff filled up and noticed that when it pumps to about 160 or less my bp is usually good. When it pumps to over 200 it's higher. So that's another step u can take to just look at that before actually looking at the numbers. It's all mental with me and my anxiety raises mine. Good diet and exercise and being relaxed is the best advice. Also laughter helps before checking. Watch something funny. Ok sorry for going on hope everyone can get over their fears. It's just a darn machine!

Oct 30, 2015
blood pressure and phobia.
by: jim

I also lived every day of my life worrying about my bp.at 18 yrs old and after smoking 5 cigarettes in the Dr's office he told me we were going to the hospital if I did not calm down, put me on pb meds and from that point I was petrified to even see a bp kit. Somewhere down the line I started checking my own and I would check it 20 to 30 times a day and wind up going to the er because it would get higher each time I checked it. My Dr could not believe I checked it so many times every day. He put me on a low mg of stertraline and now I do not care to check it or worry about it. But if I miss a dose look out I just made my bp go to 207 over 105 by checking it. I started to panic took more bp meds and now it is down to 133 0ver 77. It sucks living like this. I worry about having a sinking heart attack for most of my life. What does it feel like not to worry about this I will never know. Good luck my friends.

Oct 31, 2015
I wish we could all meet!
by: Noreen

It would help me more than anything to get together with all of you. Again, I ask, are any of you in the Chicago area? [email protected]

Nov 01, 2015
Mindfulness
by: Kelly

I have been looking into mindfulness as a way of overcoming my BP monitor phobia. It's about changing our relationship with fear and anxiety in general and basically accepting whatever the situation might be. I intend to give it a go and will report back if I find any improvements. Anyone interested in meantime Jon Kabat Zinn would appear to be good start. He is Professor of Medicine Emeritus and creator of the Stress Reduction Clinic and the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. So very good credentials.There are lots of his talks and exercises available on youtube.

Nov 04, 2015
Attempting to conquer my fear
by: Hanna

I am currently undergoing cognitive behavioural therapy through the NHS to conquer my fear of having my blood pressure taken and other fears to do with having my blood taken etc. I don't fear my blood pressure being too high, I fear the feeling of feeling my pulse and that my circulation is being cut off. This is coupled with an extreme shame that I react so extremely when the medical staff try to take it. Even writing this is fairly difficult.

My therapist has been taking me through very gentle processes and exercises to try and get me over it. Unfortunately if anything has become enormously apparent although there is no magic answer. However, with very dedicated work and a supportive therapist I believe I am definitely on route to overcoming this phobia.

Every time I come across a difficult situation I have to write down the circumstances, then I have to write down my automatic thoughts / fears, the resulting feelings, the resulting emotions and my reaction. I then have to analyse it and give advise as though I were to a friend. Then I have to set myself goals and experiments of how to start moving it forwards.

The aim is to make these goals really gentle, and to take breaks between them so that you don't scare yourself further. Sometimes the act of writing down the thought itself is hard enough.

Anyhow, I have to have a blood pressure test tomorrow and it is my hope it is going to go with as positive approach as possible. Wish me luck!

Nov 08, 2015
Good Luck and Lots of Support
by: Noreen

We are all there for you, in spirit. We all know exactly what you are going through. It's a crazy phobia to have. I wish I a had a fear of flying, instead. Then, I could just take a Xanax, or something. This phobia is so all-pervasive (and intrusive).

Nov 17, 2015
AFRAID of Blood Pressure
by: joseph

hey guys! Im 23 years old and I have also the same problem with you.. I am soo afraid everytime the doctor or nurse check my BP.. I dont know Why? I just feel uncomfortable... please help me.. it saddens me really.. sometimes i ask my self why? it embarrassed me for many times... and I was so shy to admit the reality that I just afraid on the machine... help me pleasseee.... GOD BLESS US ALL..

Nov 23, 2015
Read all of the blog
by: Noreen

Joseph, reading this blog has really helped me. Because it is a lonely feeling to have this fear. I don't discuss it friends or family. One reason I don't is because I don't want to put any ideas in anyone's head to pass this problem along. It is really a nasty habit...getting a phobic reaction to that blood pressure machine. That is what it is...a habit we've hypnotized ourselves into. Supposedly, we can hypnotize ourselves out of it. It just takes practice. I've done things like when I'm going for a walk, visualize myself throwing off an anchor, symbolizing the phobia, and saying "I don't want it anymore, I don't need it anymore, and I don't have it anymore". After all it is your thoughts that are causing this. So it's your (our) thoughts that can stop it. There is hope!

Nov 24, 2015
In the same boat
by: Anonymous

I feel so stupid trying to tell people that I am afraid of the sound of that cuff beeping and then being told it's all in my mind. Well no kidding it's all in my mind. My poor doctor wants me to put on a 24 hr monitoring machine. I told her after 24 hrs of constant beeping , my head I think would explode. I have a cuff at home, and just looking at it raises my anxiety level, and I can feel my heart rate elevating. I broke my leg a few yrs ago and had to go in for surgery. Was I concerned about pain, anesthetic etc, no, all I was anxious about was after surgery they kept on taking my BP . (Which they do for every one)

How can I be so stupid!!!!

Nov 25, 2015
Me too !!
by: Anonymous UK

Read the last comments with great interest as to have the dreaded 24 hour machine fitted next week!! Not sure if it is going to prove anything other than confirm my fear of the darned thing as sure it will stay high throughout!! Am getting to the state that BP is constantly on my mind so think therapy or hypnosis might be the next step, any advice gratefully received.

Nov 26, 2015
To Anonymous from UK
by: Noreen

I hope you've read all the comments in the blog. There is a lot of helpful thoughts. A doctor suggested that I wear that 24 monitor and I declined. Why put myself in a state of panic for that long? Also who the hell can sleep with that thing on? What has helped me the most is to buy one of those wrist monitors. The one that you hold up against your heart, (not the new one that you put on your wrist and then lay your wrist on a table). Just leave it on my wrist without taking a reading, just to get used to it. Then, take the bp reading without looking. Do these things for a few days, weeks, and I believe it can help you. Remember, it is YOUR mind's thoughts that are causing the problem. The mind has to be retrained. I've tried therapy and hypnosis. That did not help me. The best way to get over a phobia is to do it. Try the suggestions I've made, (and others). You can get better! Trust me (us).

Nov 27, 2015
Try this
by: Anonymous

I have had HBP for 26 years and also have white coat syndrome. After many attempt's of trying to lower it tension was the cause. Now before i take it i have two large alcoholic drinks which puts me in a completely relaxed state and my b/p results are normal. Try it.

Nov 29, 2015
2nd fear
by: KB801

In almost all phobias it's not the first fear that puts you over the edge it's the second - the one were you fear the fear itself. If you allow the fear to take its course and not add the"oh my gosh here we go again" and you focus on the fear and make it worse. It's not easy but I you just let the first fear run its course and not add that second " omg this is afwul" and don't try to control it the fear will eventually fade.

And remember even if it's high when you take it - it will go down when you are not thinking about it/asleep etc

Good luck all

Nov 30, 2015
Being Fitted Today!!
by: Anonymous UK

Thanks for your thoughts. Monitor being fitted this afternoon so will try to keep calm and use some of the suggested techniques, will keep you updated, fingers x !!

Nov 30, 2015
Working on it!
by: JMN

So comforting to know there are others with my same issue!!
Nice not to feel so alone!
This is a rather recent phobia that I believe was brought on by the fact my dad had a small stroke (w/a BP of over 230/110). Ever since this happened (almost 2 months now) I get severely anxious just thinking about having my BP taken!
I've never had an issue w/having my BP taken before at the Dr's office or anywhere else, no history of high BP, and am a very healthy 52 year old woman-I eat right, exercise and keep myself at a healthy weight. No meds.
Now, I go into full panic mode and the adrenaline sends my BP way up whenever I attempt to get a reading (at the grocery store). Scary!

I've just purchased an audio book that was recommended to me and I am hoping this will help.
Check out; Pass Through Panic by Dr. Claire Weekes. I'm going to give it a try and am praying for success! It had great reviews, so I thought I would share.
Best of luck to all of you here....I know we can beat this!!
Thank you for your support.
JMN

Dec 01, 2015
Monitor On!!
by: Anonymous UK

Just a quick update, had the dreaded monitor fitted yesterday (just inflating now!!) and not happy!! Initial blood pressure on fitting was much higher than ever before at 219/99, reduced to 205/99 within a few minutes but pretty sure it has stayed high ever since as can't switch off from the constant waiting for the next reading!! Haven't slept at all and longing for 3pm this afternoon when it comes off!! My advice, unless really necessary, don't bother with this monitor as all it does is build the fear! Will be interesting to see what's next!! Expect to hear from the hospital consultant within a couple of werks, will keep you posted but going to look at relaxation tapes or maybe yoga!!

Dec 01, 2015
It's nice to know I'm not alone
by: Mike

Hi, I'm sorry so many of you suffer from this issue, so do I, but at the same time it's encouraging to know I'm not alone. I've had anxiety issues for all my adult life--and going to the Dr.'s office may just be my biggest trigger. Last time I was in the office the first reading came back at 190/100 and the nurse just looked at me like WTF? I'm this 5 ft. 9, 150 pound guy who runs and takes care of myself and I confessed to the nurse I'm terrified of coming to the office. He was sympathetic and a few minutes later my Dr., who knows about my issue, took it and it had come to down to about 160/100 (When I got back to my parents' house 20 minutes later or so it was down to 130/85). Lately, after reading Dr. Carolyn Dean's amazing book 'The Magnesium Miracle,' I've been supplementing with magnesium and it's really been helping to the take the edge off. She makes the point in the book that most people who have issues with anxiety and depression or often hypertension are deficient in this very important mineral (Stress depletes magnesium from the body). I'm learning not to be ashamed any more of this fear, but there are still times it kind of drives me batty. Slowly, I'm desensitizing myself more and more, but it takes time. Good luck to everybody and be well this holiday season :)

Dec 01, 2015
Slow Exposure Therapy
by: ScaredofBP

I'm working with my therapist on slow exposure to the home BP machine. Finally got it on my arm and inflated (although so loose it errored out) without going over a 5 on the 1-10 scale of anxiety.

Going to my doctor tomorrow, and am not letting her take my BP. It could push my therapy back weeks. Should be interesting, but it's my body and I call the shots. That's something else I'm working on - the doctor is there to help, but they can only do what YOU let them and what YOU are comfortable with. If you need time to work through a phobia, they can't stop you.


Dec 01, 2015
Magnesium
by: JMN

Thanks, Mike.
I too find magnesium to be helpful for calming me down.
I will check out the book you mentioned.
Most people are deficient in this mineral...I suggested that my mom take it for her heart palpitations and she is having great results!

Dec 02, 2015
Greetings from Australia
by: Anonymous

I am so pleased to have met you all on line and to learn that there are so many like me! I hate all medical procedures where taking my BP is necessary. I've just been diagnosed with cataracts and immediately my BP has risen thinking of the ordeal ahead, especially the reactions of medical staff when I get high readings. They really freak out, don't' they? That scares me more. Luckily for me, I am ok at the dentist probably because he is a very calm and understanding man. All your comments have helped me greatly. Thank you so much.

Dec 06, 2015
white coat
by: Pat

So glad to have found you guys 😊 I have same problems, taking BP at home or Drs office..I never had BP problems until the last few years...now I have turned 70, and that really bothers me..I just retired from my job this year, and since then I have a phobia about my blood pressure...I get a headache and know my BP is up, and it always is..

Dec 09, 2015
Try to find others
by: Noreen

Pat, I've tried to find others, where I live in the Chicago area, to possibly get together to support each other. I think one person from this group on the blog is from Florida. Where exactly, I don't remember. I've even put an ad on craigslist. No luck so far, but I keep trying.

We all understand your problem. When you are feeling low, please reread all of this blog and I am sure you will feel better.

Dec 12, 2015
so fed up
by: Lesley

I had a stroke 18 months ago but have been lucky to recover well apart from side effects of medication and this stupid irrational fear of having my bp taken. Recently went on holiday to Florida and had to see a doctor there which worried me due to being afraid of 'the machine'. Even though I was panicking bp was 160 over 100 which was not as bad as I thought it would be. Now home I will need to see my own doc to discuss pills I'm now on and she'll want to take my bp. My fear started earlier this year when they gave me a machine to bring home and take bp twice a day for 6 days - it was a disaster and I had been perfectly OK before that taking it at home. Now hate the sight of the machine.

Dec 23, 2015
Phobia for measuring BP
by: Ademola

Thank God for being able to get all these comments from this website. I thought i'm the only person involved but thank God for the comments 'am reading here. My BP is always up anytime my doctor or my pharmacist measure it and this is due to my phobia, panicking and fear. I'm trying to measure it on my own and 'am getting it right normal but each time I visit my Doctor the panic will affect my reading and it is even affecting me when I measure it myself, pls help o.

Dec 23, 2015
Yeah me too!
by: Anonymous

Just got back from the Dr's. And as usual I was in the 170 over 100 range. Even brought in my monitor and showed my home readings of 120 83 and 115 67....doc was rude and didn't care. He said my montitor wasn't accurate. Even the nurse gave me a hassle. So they let me do my monitor and it was spot on.....then I showed them past home reading. They called me crazy for not taking the meds. Now they want to schedule another EKG..this is ridiculous. I hate living with this phobia because our society had deemed the man in the white coat with a cuff the standard health being by the approatote number. Guess I'll have to seek hypnosis . Zen ?What ever..?.

Every doctor I change and go to we go through this same routine. I'm so sick of it. I'm 52 and have been dealing with this for 30 years now.

Glad to find this site and know I am not alone.

Dec 24, 2015
Temporary high BP not dangerous
by: Kevin801

It is hard to overcome but finding the right doctor is VERY important - I have one now who just lets me bring my home readings in - Try Hemi-Sync before taking BP - check out my earlier comments on this.

I have discovered that a big part of the fear and avoidance is being embarrassed at what nurse/doctor thinks - I have found being aggressive about it helps - we are the type of people who don't like to stand up to someone or make waves (my opinion here)

If it is only high at the doctors or when nervous at home, the fear of a stroke is way overdone - it will go lower when you stop thinking about or go to sleep - here's a stat that should be calming - my doctor said that with the bp I had at the office (211/102, highest its ever been) and cholesterol at 220, I would have a 1 out of 3 chance of a stroke over 10 years! - I figured at that reading id be dead in a couple of days! at home I'm about 135/75 which is fine, and now col at 175.

I still struggle with this fear but using this site helps a lot - keep writing your thoughts! KB

Dec 26, 2015
Fear
by: Lisa

Glad to know I am not alone. My fear started about 30 years ago when I went to the doctors (not my usual doctor). My blood pressure was 140/80 and he said it's too high And I could have a stroke any time. Ever since then my blood pressure has gone up to about 170/90 and higher when I went into hospital. Not too high at home about 160/80 and most nights it comes right down to about 120/60. Just the sight of the machine upsets me. I get sick of explaining how I feel to the doctor, in fact I put off going just so they don't take my blood pressure. The other thing that annoys me is when they say in the doctor's surgery or when in hospital "just relax". Don't they know if I could do that I would! I feel I have no control over it. I am disappointed that the people you go to for medical assistance can't be more understanding and supportive. I don't do this to myself deliberately. My dad and my mum always said to me, what are you worried about, my blood pressure is never high. All I hope is one day I will just forget about it because I do worry about it daily.

Dec 27, 2015
Down with the HBP
by: Montrealer

I'm in the same both or bath :-)

When first I was "diagnosed" with HBP it was all my fault.

My fault because when I was "diagnosed", 5 years ago, I was losing my job and Dr asked if everything was Ok at work, I said Oh yes no problems

My fault because for the 2 visits to the dr office I was in rush finding a parking and running to the dr office.

Dr's are quick in prescribing and I didn't have all the "knowledge" I have now regarding HBP so she hooked me to HTZ 12.5 mg which becomes 25 mg after a year or so.

Once I was even told that HBP medication is for life .... wow wow what psychological support.

My last visit I got 180/100 and told that she is not supposed to let me go. I told her I'm just tense since it has been awhile I didn't measure it.

Since then I'm avoiding to see her cause I don't wanna her to prescribe me some other "poison" that I have to ingest.

I'm now scared to measure it at home but I do it, it starts high then it goes down.

I don't wanna be in denial but I think the fact that the reading doesn't stay high is a good indication that maybe I don't even have HBP and that all is in my head.

I feel trapped and I regret that I didn't decline the medication in the first place.

Sometimes a laugh brings it down, sometimes surfing while measuring it ... just get busy for 5 sec and voila' 20 points or so down.

It is ridiculous.

A month ago I called the nurse to tell her that the numbers at home are not bad (around 135-145/88-95) she told me those are high, in a way she freaked me out.

I think Doctors and nurses have to study psychology first and they have to be cut for such job, it is not for whoever wanting just to make big salaries.

I use to panic when I get 160-180/100-110, now I just freak out :-) and I walk by the house while measuring it and you know what, which doesn't make sense, it goes down to 150ish ... go figure.

I'm really glad I met all of you here and I encourage you to face this phobia and to talk to your care provider that stuffing you with meds is not good, to put it mildly.

I know that a doctor has to cash in seeing the max of patient, at least here in quebec/canada, but we need a doctor that listens to us with empathy that encourage us when we do a lil better.

I'm 100 % sure that if you go to see your doctor and he/she mesures your BP and even if it is high (without you seeing the numbers) will tell you "wow you are doing great, 'm glad it is improving ... let me take another mesure" ... I'm sure he will get low numbers.

But it seems they don't really care ... more they prescribe more grants they get.

Again, Good luck for you All and 'm quite sure a good percentage among you doesn't need any meds cause you are just fine :-)

Dec 28, 2015
Good to have a friend from Canada!
by: Noreen

Keep reading and find comfort in our situation. I really wish we could all get together.

Dec 29, 2015
Great to meet u all
by: VJ

It has been really debilitating feeling for almost 2 years and am so glad i am not alone. I am 58 years old. It is not just white coat but just the sight or even the thought of the stupid machine kicks in the panic. Even a 3rd or 4th reading after deep conscious breathing never gave normal. I can actually feel the jitters when i think about measuring bp. This irrational fear is so obsessive that my day is occupied with these thoughts. My muscles are tight and a constant neck pain. I told the doctor and he said i should start taking bp meds. He believes i do have hypertention because my readings are high even at home. He also gave me Lexapro. I think i will start with Lexapro and see if it helps. Would be great to actually meet any of you. I am around Cherry Hill, NJ area.

Dec 30, 2015
To JV
by: Montrealer

I would not mind taking meds if I really have HBP.

The problem here is that we are dealing with phobia, anxiety n so on.

So we need to fix that because we know for sure that it is the root cause of the High readings.

If I was a doctor I'd refer you to a psychologist because you may only need to exocise those bad thoughts that are making u feel miserable.

Take time to talk to your doctor and if he doesn't have time for a chat find another one.
My mistake is that I accept to take meds and once u r hooked there is no way out ... they r called drugs r n't they.

Cheers


Dec 30, 2015
afraid of being afraid
by: Anonymous

Hi I've had this for years also! Went to a therapist who advised me to take it at home and always give the nurse a number don't just tell her it will be high. Well I mostly do OK until I come to periods of high stress and then it's an ordeal to take it at home too so I'm in the same boat. I need surgery in a month and have started freaking out .... just really glad to know I'm not alone!!! Thanks!!

Jan 01, 2016
High BP from anxiety
by: Anonymous

Hi, wow I can't explain how thankful I am to have come across these responses. I had my son two years ago and had to deliver him early due to high blood pressure. I am 27 and consider myself healthy otherwise. Long story short after my son was born I was not allowed to be released from the hospital until my blood pressure normalized. Every time the doctor came in to take my BP I immediately felt sooo anxious. My heart raced, I physically felt my blood pressure rising. Now TWO years later I have a fear of taking my blood pressure. I monitor it at home and get somewhat normal readings, but higher than normal. I know for a fact it's my anxiety. The doctors are another story, I have anxiety even thinking about getting my BP taken at the doctors. Anyways please please let me know what others are doing to cope! I need to get this under control... Thank you all!

Jan 05, 2016
Me Too!
by: Anonymous

I'm going on 78 and have had HP phobia since I was 25 and trying to get life insurance! No Luck!! The top of my bucket list? Trying to find a cure! Reluctantly go to doctors unless have an emergency! Example: Gall Bladder and appendix! I know my BP is not hi until I'm in doctor's office! Never left hospital & being told BP was high! BP at doc's office sky high, knowing they are taking my BP! When I leave, I am relaxed and know it's less than 140/90; my reading at home! Lately, It is getting high at home (the phobea has come home)! Went to doc and they are trying BP meds! NO Difference!! I know I don't need them! So, I' m gonna stop taking it! Taking BP anytime, I feel BP rising! They tell me to be aware of stroke! I have been active all my life playing sports, still work out at least 3 times week joggin, ridin Airdyne bike and WALK steps at high school stadium! 5'9, 177 lbs! They tell me I'm overweight! I never think about BP till havin it taken! Glad, after all these years, I' not alone!! Just relax, we'll b fine!

Jan 05, 2016
thanks Mike
by: J

I tried the magnesium for pre surgery anxiety and it does seem to help ... have the same BP phobia as everyone else and trying not to obsess about the coming doctor visits and surgery day (yeah riiight!) anyway, Thanks!

Jan 06, 2016
Beetroot juice
by: Anonymous

I'm so glad I'm not alone on this one. Like every body else I'm scared of readings, home machine, sound of it, looking at it, thought of it. So I've taken matters into my own hands after reading a British study on beetroot juice. Medically proven to lower BP much the same as medication. I drink 250mils every day as a preventative. You get used to the taste & I believe it's doing the job. Still have the anxiety problem reference to BP but to me it's like taking medication with no side effects. Trust in the beetroot.

Jan 07, 2016
Few things i started doing
by: VJ

Thanks Montrealer. Fully agree with you on 'drugs' being drugs. One thing i wanted to share here is i got my Vit D tested and it is 17.5 ng/Ml which i came to know is well below normal. Started taking supplements but not in high doses. Also started few minutes of yoga (mostly breathing excercises) daily mornings. Have not attempted checking my BP but feeling a little better mentally. It all may be a 'placebo' effect and psychological but i will continue. Its too early to say. I also looked at something called 'amygdala retraing', not tried yet but will try. My feeling is, we have to beat this ! We will attack it from all directions ! Try everything as long as it is not damaging. I wish you guys all the best. Be in touch,

Cheers.

Jan 09, 2016
Bp app phobia support group
by: JepOy

Im jepoy from the philippines. 27 y.o. Siagnosed with hypertension 2 years ago.

I have the same experience just like you. If im alone, my bp is fine. When anyone sses that im checking my bp, it goes high. Much higher when im with my doctor. Do you have any group in fb so that we can share our sentiments there. Who knows, with our support to one another, we can overcome this phobia and be normal again.

Jan 10, 2016
agree
by: j

I think a lot of it stems from 'performance anxiety' and that first time you get the 'stink eye' from a nurse. I had one run out of the room to fetch the doctor who lectured me but I stuck to my guns and refused the medicine b/c I know I don't have high BP just the phobia. But I did get some tools from my therapist who I had a working relationship with from other issues but this problem has been going on for at lest 20 years ... I can usually get a normal reading at home but under times of high anxiety like waiting on upcoming surgery and how many stink eyes I'll get it's high at home too but nothing off the charts. Luckily my personal doctor knows about it and that helps... good luck everybody a good therapist does help if only to give you 'tools' to cope at the doctors office ... sorry to say I don't know about a cure but if you can finally desensitize to a home reading then that would be all the proof you need. That's why those BP machines were invented!

Jan 18, 2016
Dr advice on this condition
by: Tauqeer

My name is Tauqeer, am from India and I never had this issue before, not sure when it kind of got into my system. I dread the same way as you all, while just looking at this machine.

Once I went to a Dr as part of Health Checkup for my new job, it was a mandatory test, which I couldnt escape, I explained this to the Dr when he saw my BP level rising, and he advised me to have a Ambulatory Device, which basically is tied to you for 24 hours and would record it once in a few hours, and at the end of 24 hours, it will give you a trend of the BP reading using which we can ascertain the correct BP.

I checked the cost of this Machine and it was found to be very expensive, but still even if I have this machine, I dont think I have the courage to wear it for 24 hours. I feel facing it again and again and getting used to it would help, but it is easier said than done. My email id is [email protected] if somebody can crack this please pass the info to me. I need help!

Jan 22, 2016
Reply to last comment regarding wearing machine 24/7
by: Anonymous

I think the problem with wearing that machine for 24 hours would be that every time you'd feel the thing tightening on your arm, you'd go into panic mode and it would read consistently high anyway, so it still wouldn't be an accurate reading. I'd thought about doing a machine like that but if that's what would happen, then why bother. It would only do more harm than good.

Jan 22, 2016
Don't Do It!!
by: Anonymous

Just replying to the last comment re 24 hour monitoring!! Recently had one of the dreaded machines strapped to me and can honestly say it was a nightmare and proved nothing other than confirmed my fear of having BP taken! BP remained consistantly high and after 24 hours without sleep felt drained and so stressed. Consultant accepted that fear played a big part in the high readings however we are now at an impasse as no real idea how to proceed. Just trying to switch off, not easy but am sure that I would have keeled over and died were my BP to be as seriously high as the readings show. Hate myself for not being able to resolve but so pleased that I am not alone!!

Jan 23, 2016
To Tauqueer
by: Noreen

When one has a phobia, the best way to get over it, is to do the thing that causes the problem.

I was advised to get a wrist monitor, the one you hold up to your heart. It is much better for me, as it is not cranking up on my arm!

Practice doing it without looking at the results. After a while, you can get used to the action and not be so bothered, so that when you finally do look, it should be good.

Anyway, this has helped me. I can usually get a normal reading. If I don't I do it a few more times and then get a normal reading.

Jan 26, 2016
Thanks Noreen
by: Tauqeer

Thanks Noreen and others for your valuable comments and suggestions, I agree that strapping our arm for 24 hours would not be a good idea, it would definetly drain us and keep us constantly stressed. But what Noreen said I think would help us all to an extent, i.e go through the entire process and never look at the readings and continue doing so, until you feel comfortable with the feeling and I think the final reading would be ok.

But I think there has to be a kind of awareness, so that the Doctors and the respective faternity would actually agree that it is indeed a fear and not that the respective people are suffering from High BP, so that they would come out with something which would help us all. I fear,God forbid, if people suffering from this issue land up in a hospital and the Doctors wouldnt buy your explanation, we feel helpless, I have suffered the same situation and had to forcibly come out of the hospital. How long can we do the same. There has to be some help from the Doctors.

Feb 01, 2016
Deep Breathing is Important
by: Kevin801

Remember everyone that deep breathing for 5-10 minutes can reduce systolic BP by 20-25 points - the studies show that it works for people with White Coat BP but not on others!!!

Feb 03, 2016
nervous in seeing BP machine
by: rj

every time i went to any clinic, i always go nervous i don't even know why even though i'm not there for the check up. it's just that i'm afraid of taking my BP. MY BP is 130/90 because when the moment the BP machine get into me, my heart is pounding very strong and very fast also for the reason that i don't know . and i can't help myself to relax even though i try

Feb 06, 2016
Thank You Candi
by: Anonymous

I found this post while experiencing extreme anxiety. I,too, check my BP dozens of times a day and it's usually high the first several times, but then goes down; it continuously fluctuates between high and normal depending on where I'm at in my panic cycle. I clicked on the first link Candi posted and by the end of reading the page my anxiety was significantly reduced. Thanks for that wonderful resource.

Feb 06, 2016
Thanks!
by: bmms

I've been dealing with this for 30 years +/- and I wish I had found this conversation LOOOOONG ago. I don't really have any other anxiety issues that I know of but my MD knows my high readings in his office are not what's really going on. I tried to get him to stop taking readings because it just reinforced that reaction but he wouldn't. He said he was showing that I had "white coat syndrome" by comparing to my readings at home. I've tried meditation and got to where I just stopped taking for long periods.

About 1989, I was diagnosed with HBP and put on meds. It took me about 10 years to figure out that I didn't really need them but I was still in the "doctor knows best" mindset. I'm not there anymore and haven't gone back to meds although I am still concerned about it. I exercise regularly but my weight has gone up a little and being older (62) might mean that I need to go back but, until I can get reliable readings, it's hard to know.

Feb 11, 2016
Dr appt
by: Anonymous

So I have my yearly physical next month at the doctors and I'm already dreading it. I think about it all the time and it's depressing. Sometimes I build up confidence and feel good about it saying it will be quick and done and I'll feel better getting it done and over with. Then I think my blood pressure is going to be high and maybe I'll get bad blood work results or something and I'll be worried. I have been weight resign all year and am definitely in better shape then the last time I had a physical. I had borderline high cholesterol but nothing bad. I just try and tell myself everything will be ok and doctors are there to help us not hurt us. My blood pressure phobia will probably kick in too but my doctor understands this about me. I checked it a couple months ago at home and it was pretty good. The usually starts out high and then comes down. That's what happened last time I was at the doctors. Ugh I wish I could just be normal and go to the doctor anytime I needed without getting so worked up about it. Thanks

Feb 17, 2016
Can't calm down
by: Anonymous

Hello all! So very glad to find this site. I never had a problem worrying about blood pressure until my dad had a stroke. Now I get white coat Hbp each time I go in. It even carries over to my home checking. I realize that I may be genetically disposed to hbp, but I want accurate readings in case I end up Having to take meds as I don't want to over medicate. And does anyone else feel like having Hbp makes them "defective" in a way? Maybe that's why we get anxious; we enter want to admit maybe we are getting old, are vulnerable, have to watch what we eat etc. I think maybe that's my issue. Also, I wore an ambulatory monitor but I had positive results: it definitely showed white coat hypertension- the rest f the reading were quite good. Everyone take care, a glad we found each other!

Feb 18, 2016
blood pressure phobia
by: Pat

I not only have the blood pressure phobia, now I've developed
hypochondriac issues as well !! I retired from my job last year and have too much time on my hands..My doctor put me on a low dose blood pressure medication, but it doesn't seem to help..I told her that I feel I'm doing this to myself because of anxiety when taking my blood pressure.

Feb 21, 2016
Anxiety and bp
by: Anonymous

I'm so glad to read this . I am 38 and diagnosed with high bp but I am struggling with bp anxiety right now. Two months ago at least the docs office I had a bp measure of 107/74 beautiful right? Months before that 118/82. This was all with taking meds and not worrying about my bp. That all changed when I got a bad blood test result about my fasting glucose. I have been waking up panicked over taking my blood sugar . Great now 2 phobias! Well the anxiety sent me over the edge and I woke up with my heart racing and thought I was having a heart attack. Took my bp and it was in the 180s! That sent me into a tailspin I kept taking it until it lowered my last reading after taking it around 20 times throughout the day was130/84. I know it is my anxiety and now I shake just thinking about taking it but I feel compulsive like if I don't take it I won't know it's high and I'll have a heart attack. I feel so stupid and weak and scared.

Feb 21, 2016
You are scaring yoursel
by: Montrealer

To "Anxiety and bp" dated Feb 21, 2016

The first time I saw 180 was 6 months ago in the doctor office.

How I got it? well it started with dr taking first "manual" reading and saying ummmhhh you have 160, that's high (actually I didn't have a chance to rest before the measurement).

Then she put me on the automatic one but the damage was done and I was really scared ... the results was 180 with the machine. Told her that it is just because I'm anxious, she said ok but normally I'm not supposed to let you go with that pressure so high.

I've been measuring it since at home and, as supposed to be since it is like the pulse, sometimes it is high and sometimes it is normal or close to normal.

You should be worried if it is always high or let's say consistently high, otherwise it is anxiety ... you will notice that most of the time systolic and pulse are related.

As mentioned in one of my previous comments, Dr's should work on the patient psychology to do an accurate measuring unfortunately they don't have time and they seem not to care.

The other thing, while you are measuring if you feel that your heart is pounding and that you are anxious stop the machine and relax before trying ... you can also get yourself distracted while measuring, like talking on the phone or watching a movie or surfing (yes I know they you have to keep quite but quite most of the time can get you anxious.

Good luck and Low with the HBP!


Feb 24, 2016
BP anxiety
by: Anonymous

I too have this problem and it's comforting to know that I'm not alone! I only have to think about having my BP taken and can feel it rising, especially if the monitor is electronic. My GP uses a manual monitor which nearly always gives normal readings but it goes sky high whenever an electronic monitor is used - even when I take my BP at home. I think it's something to do with the noise it makes then you wait for it to keep pumping knowing this means your BP is high which makes it worse! I would advise anyone with this problem to find a GP who uses the old fashioned manual machine, which are just as accurate as the electronic ones and far less stressful! Good luck to you all!

Feb 27, 2016
taking BP at home
by: j

I don't mind the wrist monitor and that has helped me ... I take it every day at home to keep myself 'desensitized' but it still goes up in the doctors office but not as bad as it used to .... I've been getting normal readings at the doctors which surprise the heck out of me but I always warn the nurse that I have white coat and I think that helps me relax. The old fashioned way of taking it scares me more than the electric but we all have our phobia quirks. I've been to a therapist for this and that helped so I would advise anyone here to try that if all else fails ... there's nothing wrong w/ getting some 'coping tools' Good luck!!

Feb 29, 2016
I'm in the same boat
by: Anonymous

Wow!! so glad I found this site. I, too, have a phobia of getting my blood pressure taken at a clinic or hospital (it's just fine when I take it at home). like many of you, just the thought of having it taken makes me panic. Even when I see a bp machine at the clinic, I panic and can just feel my bp rising. I've had this issue for many years. I'm having surgery next week and tomorrow I have to do the pre-ops. I'm dreading it because I know they will take my blood pressure.

Mar 07, 2016
HOW TO GET RID BP PHOBIA
by: BP PHOBIA

I HAVE THIS SAME PROBLEM.. HOW DO I GET RID OF TAKING BP MEASURE...I"M NERVOUS WHILE TAKING BP EITHER AT HOME OR HOSPITAL...I WILL GET NERVOUS IF I SEE BP MACHINE or EVEN IF ANY ONE TALKS ABOUT BP OR TAKING BP.. PLEASE FRIENDS HELP ME......

Mar 08, 2016
Half in my head?
by: Ron75

I always had white Coat and I just came to the conclusion that a reading of 160/90 at the doctor’s office was my normal. The important thing, it always went down when I took my pressure at home. About 6 years ago, I started to notice that my readings at home started to creep up from around 130/85 to
145 /90 so I went to the doctors to report my findings. He said, since I exercise daily (Bicycle 4 miles each morning, then walk about another mile), he wanted to put me on 50 Mils of metoprolol. This helped bring it down some, but I noticed that I was starting to get very anxious each time I checked my pressure at home with my monitor. (An Omron automatic digital). When I first sat down, my pressure was always at least 150/90. I would then sit and try NOT to think about the reading….it would always come down after about 10 minutes…..to a more normal 130/85. My doctor has since increased my dosage to 150 mils. Half in the Morning, half in the evening before bed. Even with this high dosage, I am still very anxious about taking the reading. I learned to watch the readout and stop it when the cuff gets to over 170…..thus cancelling it before it finished the check. I found that a digit inflation of over 170 gives me a reading of above 145/over 90….so I learned to just "wait" until the inflation pressure is a bit lower before I get the "real" reading. Comforting, my doctor says "spiking" is normal for many people during the day. Spiking can be even as high as 200/100!.The key is not to be spiking for a long period of time…days or even weeks….(this is rare even for those of us in here that have this cursed "arm band syndrome"). Thanks for all your contributions…. I am glad you guys are here to help put a little prospective to it. My friends and family…many…think this is just a lot of stuff in my head.

Mar 10, 2016
surgery
by: j

I have this problem and when the anesthesiologist asked me if I had a problem w/ my blood pressure I told him 'no' just anxiety so as he started to take my blood pressure he put me to sleep and when I was coming to my BP on the monitor was just fine so hopefully when you have your surgery that's what they'll do! Good Luck! I'm hoping that's the last surgery of my life as the pre anxiety was horrible and all b/c I didn't know what my BP was going to be. If you can find a doctor that understands that should help. I'm finally comfortable (as comfortable as I'll ever be) w/ my PCP and I've been getting a normal BP in her office although I still go through my white-coat spiel to the nurse every time just in case! it's embarrassing but also VERY common, We are not alone!

Mar 10, 2016
Medical Alert Card
by: Anonymous Nurse

I am thinking of making a Medical Alert Card to carry when I go to new health care settings. It will say something like this:

"I have a strong stress reaction to taking having my blood pressure taken. My primary care physician is following my blood pressure and is aware of my hyper-reactivity. His phone number is XXXXXXXXX if you need further information.
I would prefer you not take my blood pressure but if it becomes essential for my care please take it after giving me time to adjust to your office and staff and take it more than once when my heart rate has reached its normal range of 60-70 beats per minute. Thank you for your caring understanding of my circumstances."

What do you think?

Mar 10, 2016
Medical Alert Card
by: Anonymous Nurse

I am thinking of making a Medical Alert Card to carry when I go to new health care settings. It will say something like this:

"I have a strong stress reaction to having my blood pressure taken. My primary care physician is following my blood pressure and is aware of my hyper-reactivity. His phone number is XXXXXXXXX if you need further information.
I would prefer you not take my blood pressure but if it becomes essential for my care please take it after giving me time to adjust to your office and staff and take it more than once when my heart rate has reached its normal range of 60-70 beats per minute. Thank you for your caring understanding of my circumstances."

What do you think?

Mar 11, 2016
Medical Alert ID
by: Noreen

That is such a great idea.

I need to make an appt. for my "yearly" exam and I am dreading it. The doctor is nice, but I don't think she believed me that I don't have high blood pressure. I wouldn't let her take it. At home it is normal. When I was there last year, I thought she believed me, but then when I took my blood test order, I noticed she had used a code for high blood pressure for several of the tests, which really made me angry, (probably raising my bp!).

This is such an extremely annoying problem.

Mar 12, 2016
Good idea
by: Tauqeer

This is a great idea, if the Medical card can be authorised by a Medical practitioner, it would end all of our meseries and this might kind bring back of lost confidence.

Mar 12, 2016
Provider Technique
by: Anonymous Nurse

You might find the information on this AHA site informative. Notice the very specific instructions about correct measurement of BP ( BP cuff level with heart, wait 5 minutes before taking the first BP reading, take multiple readings, etc).
I rarely have my BP taken by someone who follows all these procedures correctly.

How careful are your health care providers?

http://hyper.ahajournals.org/content/45/1/142.full

Mar 12, 2016
Healthcare personal needs BP training
by: Montrealer

You right Anonymous Nurse, upset me a lot when my doctor or the nurse wants to take my blood pressure. They don't respect the basic basics on how to do it correctly .... which makes my blood boils of anger :-)


Mar 13, 2016
How does a person know?
by: MelGee

Since I was 18 years old more or less I have had a bad phobia about someone (even me) taking my blood/pressure. As many of you, the placement of the B/P cuff causes mine to shoot up like a rocket. I have no pain or symptoms, other than the meter says my B/P is to high, OR once it was too low. The text book says only 120/80 is good, every other reading is bad, and could kill you any second. Of course I don't have to tell you how this can ruin your day, week or life. I have been in the hospital several times, with nothing found. Actually I did have High B/P once and the signs were hard to miss. Three days in the hosp fixed the unknown problem. Believe me they did several MRI's and many other tests, Only to find nothing. I know the meter is all they have to indicate there is a problem, so it's a no win situation. I have spent thousands of dollars on hospital visits, and medication with one problem in which I actually DID have high B/P. and believe my body knew it. I am currently past 70 years old, and who knows, there could be a real problem. One day a couple of weeks ago mine was excellent, only to find a couple of days later it's very high. All I can say is when my B/P was in fact dangerously high I knew it. My eyes wouldn't process the information being sent to my brain. I can feel for you who are cursed with this problem. I have no idea what causes it, and neither do the doctors. Maybe GOD will tell us by n by. Good luck to you.

Mar 13, 2016
Good doctors visit
by: Anonymous

I recently went for my yearly exam and my bp was pretty good. I was shocked but my doctor is so cool. He's an older man who jokes around and it so nice. He never hypes things up and always has a calm approach. He takes the time to listen and explain things. I have been working out a lot lifting running etc and also eating a small piece of dark chocolate daily really helps with bp. My advice to everyone is to find a great doctor. Ask around and if u don't like yours switch! Exercise and keep busy. Don't take your bp unless you are instructed to do so. My doctor told me I don't need to check mine. It's fine. I was so happy and everyone can be too. Stop stressing over your bp it fluctuates daily and can be high during times of stress and normal most of the time. If u do check follow the guidelines. Wait 5 min rest make sure you're doing it right. If you're nervous or anxious don't check it. Or check it a few times but don't look at the number. Practice this many times until you get comfortable. And then look at the number later. Enjoy life and don't stress over this silly thing anymore. There's bigger problems to worry about. Thanks

Mar 14, 2016
For MelGee
by: Anonymous

Dear MelGee,
The text books state 120/80 as an ideal BP but 130/70 is good as are several other readings.
As we get older it does change and our age is taken into account when having BP taken at the doctors.
As the previous contributor stated don't take it when anxious but don't avoid if asked to take readings, just take several and it will get lower each time.
As I get white coat syndrome I prefer to take my own readings over a fortnight and give them to the doctor.
I also take it occasionally when relaxed, that way it isn't a phobia anymore.

Mar 18, 2016
A case
by: Anonymous

hi, fellows.
My story:
-about 40 years old I measure pressure 150/100 and a doctor higher.
-I went a specialist. my pressure was monitored under heavy physical load. The diagnose:no hypertension.
-10 years ago I was so tired that I let a doctor measure my pressure- 175/105
-I refused medication. Doctor was so angry that wanted to prove to me. He did send me ambulatory monitoring.
-result 24 hours average 119/80
-I solemly promised to me never let measurement
-I wanted my driving licence maintained 70 years old
-pressure measurement needed- 220/110
-home measurements: 170/100 daytime, evening when very sleepy 125/68 usually at least 150/80
-now I am going to ambulatory!,,,,,

Btw: common sense and a phillosofe David Hume:
If in the you hear the voice as horse valuing thing a horse not A zebra.


-

Mar 24, 2016
Someone needs to invent a forehead scanner
by: Jill

Wow, I am blown away reading all of your comments! So comforting to know I'm not totally wacko! I am embarassed to talk about this to anyone unless I think they would be compassionate, or have the issue themselves and understand.

It has been gradual for me, as alot of you, that this came on. I always had great BP, on the low end in fact. I am 55 and it changed in the last few years. My mom died 5 years ago of a succession of heart attacks and finally strokes. She didn't take that great of care of herself, overweight and didn't exercise but boy did she enjoy her life! I feel my lifestyle is alot better than hers, I've been doing yoga for 25 years, and walk and bike ride alot. Try to eat pretty healthy with occasional junk, and don't drink much. I think watching her go thru this, and all the Dr. visits and hospital stays I went along on was the beginning of my anxiety about this. Well she passed, then my dad was alone and I watched over him for 3 years, going along on all the Dr visits and hospital stays. He had totally different issues, and was my stepdad, so no worries about health related matters. Tho I loved him like a dad, and called him that! He passed 1 1/2 years ago.

Since then I have had an aversion to the Dr. and get anxious when I have to go, which isn't much. Right now my annual pap exam is coming up, and the fear is building. I wish someone could invent a forehead scanner to take BP, because for me if it could be over quicker I think it would be a more accurate reading. I have an older style cuff at home that you pump up and it gives a digital readout. The beeping bothers me tho. My husband started checking his BP as the doc recommended and was told to get a new Omiron model, which we did. That thing give me super high readings, I can't stand it! When the cuff starts to tighten I feel my heart start to race, and then the reading throws me into a funk for the day. Such a viscious cycle! I really feel I am pretty healthy otherwise.

All of your comments have helped me to go with the idea to just go in and talk to the doc and explain, without the nurse taking my BP 1st. I am building the courage, thank you all so much for sharing! There is comfort here and I am grateful :)

Mar 25, 2016
B/P
by: Anonymous SJP

Just found your website alleluia. Have had this phobia since my eldest was born she is 37 now.My Doc then used to take the machine off the table
as I felt sick and faint. Just been hospital
visiting and my eyes are glued to the machine which reads b/p. Ive told my family if ever
I have to go to hospital they must tell the
medics of my phobia. It has stopped me going for
jobs where a medical is needed. With my second child I had to go private with my Doc writing a letter explaining my problem. All through labours my b/p was normal. My present Doc totally gets it and I just show her my b/p readings taken at home which are normal. So glad to
find out I am not on my own. I feel a freak

Mar 25, 2016
Anyone live near Chicago area?
by: Noreen

Everyone once in a while I keep asking. If there is someone, with this same nuisance of a problem, near me. I'd love to get together with them to commiserate and heal.

Please let me know: [email protected]

Mar 25, 2016
Not as dangerous as you think
by: KB801

I want to emphasize that you can have high readings intermittantly and even if it is high all the time it takes a long time to kill you, you will not have a stroke right away as many think (you still need to keep it under control if you can) -Just read that a top number of 170, whichever doc would treat, brought down to below 140, would save 2 people out of 100 from a stroke for five years - you still want to lower it but don't have to go loco about it -

I know fears are not rational, and I still have the phobia but its gotten better so that I can take it at home and its okay. Went to doc the other day and he now only takes my home readings - nurse always want to take it and complains when I say no but you need to stand your ground on this, and find another doc if the one you have now doesn't understand

Apr 04, 2016
Finally
by: Florida11101

So, here I was thinking I was the only person with an intense phobia of getting my BP taken. I do not have whitecoat syndrome. Actually, if I go into a medical facility and I know that my BP will not be taken, I feel very relaxed and great. But, when I know or even suspect that the dreaded BP machine will latch onto my arm....I get into a really tense state. This happens days before the appointment and just builds.
So, here is how I go the phobia. I am in the military and have been for the past 18 years. I have always had great BP readings until 2009. I never even noticed my BP was being taken before that date. I went in, and I had just run up the stairs and was called in soon after. The cuff was put on and the result was a high reading. The medical technician looked at me crazy and asked if I had just run a marathon, I said no. He said "Your blood pressure is really high".
That is literally all it took to gain this fear. I do stuff in the military that is risky, stressful and instills fear. I strap on firefighting equipment, work on the flight deck of ships....etc. I have no fear of anything....except getting my BP taken.
It was so bad in 2011 that I had an EKG done and it turned out fine, just a high heart rate.
Because I am in the military, I see a different doctor each time. So, I have to explain to a different doctor every time that I only have high BP and pulse in the medical facility.
I went to the dentist the other day and my pulse rate was 159. Really high. I went to medical a few days later and my pulse was 154 with a 145/95 BP. For me, that is REALLY high. If I take it at a CVS or Walgreens by myself, I get a 110/70 or so. My resting pulse rate is about 55-70. I am not so sure that it is the actually machine, but the reading that the machine gives and the response from the medical staff. So, I know this is just a fear in my head, and an irrational fear, but I can do nothing to control it.
So, when you feel like you have this fear and it is bad, just know that a military officer, who leads over 100 people into stressful and dangerous situations has the same problem as you.

I do not have a solution for this issue, and am not aware of a solution that works. I am starting to try breathing techniques and some relaxing herbs, but too early to tell. I have a medical appointment tomorrow, so I know I have to explain this again.
Well, at least I know there are others who have this problem. Good luck to everyone.

Apr 04, 2016
Finally
by: Florida

So, here I was thinking I was the only person with an intense phobia of getting my BP taken. I do not have whitecoat syndrome. Actually, if I go into a medical facility and I know that my BP will not be taken, I feel very relaxed and great. But, when I know or even suspect that the dreaded BP machine will latch onto my arm....I get into a really tense state. This happens days before the appointment and just builds.
So, here is how I go the phobia. I am in the military and have been for the past 18 years. I have always had great BP readings until 2009. I never even noticed my BP was being taken before that date. I went in, and I had just run up the stairs and was called in soon after. The cuff was put on and the result was a high reading. The medical technician looked at me crazy and asked if I had just run a marathon, I said no. He said "Your blood pressure is really high".
That is literally all it took to gain this fear. I do stuff in the military that is risky, stressful and instills fear. I strap on firefighting equipment, work on the flight deck of ships....etc. I have no fear of anything....except getting my BP taken.
It was so bad in 2011 that I had an EKG done and it turned out fine, just a high heart rate.
Because I am in the military, I see a different doctor each time. So, I have to explain to a different doctor every time that I only have high BP and pulse in the medical facility.
I went to the dentist the other day and my pulse rate was 159. Really high. I went to medical a few days later and my pulse was 154 with a 145/95 BP. For me, that is REALLY high. If I take it at a CVS or Walgreens by myself, I get a 110/70 or so. My resting pulse rate is about 55-70. I am not so sure that it is the actually machine, but the reading that the machine gives and the response from the medical staff. So, I know this is just a fear in my head, and an irrational fear, but I can do nothing to control it.
So, when you feel like you have this fear and it is bad, just know that a military officer, who leads over 100 people into stressful and dangerous situations has the same problem as you.

I do not have a solution for this issue, and am not aware of a solution that works. I am starting to try breathing techniques and some relaxing herbs, but too early to tell. I have a medical appointment tomorrow, so I know I have to explain this again.
Well, at least I know there are others who have this problem. Good luck to everyone

Apr 05, 2016
Thanks for your encouraging words
by: Tauqeer

Thanks you Sir for your encouraging words, hope somebody somewhere finds something path breaking which would help us all.

All the best :) and thanks again for your comments.
Tauqeer

Apr 05, 2016
aGree
by: KB801

To finally new:

You are so right on-I led 20 people out the South Tower on 9/11, flames, debris falling, hysterical people, yet even though I knew we were in grave danger, I had a strange calm determination and I GUARANTEE you that my BP was lower then when'd its taken by a doctor. Part of the reason is I had no time to thin about 9/11, so there was no anticipatory thoughts or anxiety, and I had a goal to focus on.

Phobias are strange bed-fellows, and often happen to more intelligent people, so here's to us bright people. Maybe we should start a BP Phob Mensa Group!

Apr 05, 2016
Intelligence
by: Florida11101

Yes, I believe you are correct that highly intelligent people seem to have many anxiety and phobia type issues. It is because we are more aware and in tune to pretty much everything going on around us. I was a gifted child and my son has been identified. I'll wait until he is much older to talk to him about anxiety because if I speak to him about it now....it may give him anxiety!! So, my appointment was rescheduled until tomorrow (by them, not me for once). I am going to try some deep breathing stuff and see if that helps, but I doubt it. Ill go into flight or fight when I see the machine.
You do bring up a good point about remaining calm during 9/11. I think you are correct. You didn't have to think about it, it just happened, so no time for the anxiety to build.

Apr 05, 2016
Wrist Monitor
by: Noreen

Hi, All,

I really enjoyed the last couple of entries, of course for the honesty, and then the idea that extremely intelligent people have phobias, etc. I can agree with that!

The one thing that has helped me was getting a wrist monitor. The one you hold up to your heart. I have gotten success with it. It's less stressful than having something clamp down on your upper arm.

The other helpful idea for me was to "take" your bp, but don't look at the results. Just practice using the machine. It will get better.

Apr 06, 2016
Appointment
by: Florida11101

Well, went to medical today, and same result. BP was like 170/90, so really high. My pulse was through the roof. The minute I walked out the door, I could feel the relief and my blood pressure and pulse drop to normal. So weird. The technician was freaked out and made me make another appointment with the doctor to talk about this. Just what I need, another appointment to check my blood pressure!
HAHA! Anyway, breathing and kava tea did absolutely nothing for me. So, I am thinking about going to a psychiatrist to work on this. Has anyone had success with that or tried that?

Apr 06, 2016
Therapist
by: Noreen

I did try a therapist. Talking about it didn't help.

But since the only way to get over a phobia is to do it, practice taking it at home and bring the results to the doctor. If that doctor doesn't respond appropriately, find another.

I do wish to all could get together! It seems like there are several of you in Florida. Can't you guys get together to work this out?


Apr 06, 2016
BP machines and things
by: Lesley

Anyone on here who is able to take their blood pressure with no problems at home STOP worrying! at least you know your BP is OK. When you go to the doctor make them accept your home readings, YOU know that you don't need medication. I am one of the ones who cant bear a machine near me at home or otherwise and it is a real problem. I have my first appointment on the phone tomorrow with the CBT people, the first call is an assessment, I'm just hoping they can help me, I think it will take a while!!

Apr 06, 2016
home readings, wrist monitor
by: j

I think if you can get normal readings at home or train yourself to, then you're good. I went to a therapist and she's the one who encouraged me to take it at home all the time and to carry my home readings w/ me to the doctor and to tell the nurse in advance ... I'm better now (not cured!) but I still go through my verbal spiel to the nurse about white coat and that seems to calm me down a little bit by throwing it out there. Also I have a wrist monitor ... makes it easier for me

Apr 06, 2016
omg .. me too!!
by: Anonymous

I too have this BP fear... who knew there are more like me.. I've been battling this fear for just over a year.. At first my Dr. put me on high blood pressure medicine, after taking meds for 3 month all my joints became painful, "arthritic".
DR.. took me off, did home bp for 3 wks and bp was normal.. Dr did conclude I have "white coat"
It took me over 5 months to get my joints back to feeling normal. Now I am fearful of bp meds.
We humans are such complicated creatures aren't we?

Apr 07, 2016
I hear you guys
by: Mark

Hi to everyone I've been suffering from anxiety for several years and I know it drives my BP through the roof. I had a panic attacks years ago which led me to the ER. My BP was 230/110/150 they gave me an Ativan and within 30 mins it went to 130/90/100. Since this incident and after many many tests I have suffered with anxiety related BP.
My GP does not check my Bp anymore as it skyrockets in his office I bring my readings with me and they are generally a bit above normal sometimes a bit higher.
Unfortunately now I've developed a bit of a phobia about taking mine at home. The other I decided to take my BP and unusually I got a high reading of 180/90 it freaked me out and I started checking my BP constantly it has sort of ended up sending back to square one. I had several years of feeling pretty good again this is frustrating.
Does anyone else get a great reading after 40 mins of aerobic exercise? But about 30 mins later it starts to climb again which sends me into a panic. I think I will leave the machine alone for a while it's awful what you're own mind can to to you.
I feel for everyone on this forum as I understand exactly what your going through.
By the way I'm on BP medication which I don't think does anything for anxiety related BP.
If I take an Ativan it drops right down I take these rarely as they are highly addictive. Regards Mark.

Apr 07, 2016
home readings, wrist monitor
by: j

the wrist monitor is good b/c when I get freaked out about taking it at home I walk around or up and down the stairs w/ it on to distract me and it will actually come down ... the whole thing is to get used to taking it at home .. not what the number is esp. if you're having a bad episode.. been there!

Apr 07, 2016
Same boat
by: Florida11101

It seems we are all in the same boat. Some have anxiety all the time, others only during the blood pressure readings. Some have doctors who understand, others not so much. Some can take it at home and get a good reading, others cannot take it at all.
Since I do not think there is a cure for this, I think the best way has already been stated. Take your own BP readings to the doctor with you. If your doctor does not understand, find a new doctor!
I am in a bad position myself. Being military, I cannot choose my doctor. In fact, it is a different technician and doctor each time. Also, I have been lucky and they have accepted by "whitecoat syndrome" story. But, if I get unlucky and get a doctor who doesn't, then I can be medically discharged due to high blood pressure.
I think the best medicine is knowing that there are many others like us and we are not alone in this. Reading these messages doesn't make my blood pressure readings better at medical, but it makes me feel better throughout the rest of the day. Hang in there everyone! We are all in this together!

Apr 14, 2016
Big business NEW
by: Anonymous

I keep reminding myself that blood pressure medication is a big money maker for drug companies. I suspect there are some self serving motives in the setting of supposedly normal bp rates.

Apr 14, 2016
Banquet NEW
by: Noreen

There are so many of us, we should rent a hall and have a banquet!

Anyone, now, in the Chicago area? Email me at:
turquoise silver at hot mail dot company. (No spaces in the address. I wrote it that way so hopefully I won't get junk mail.)

Apr 14, 2016
Extreme White Coat Syndrome NEW
by: Jana96

I have extremely bad white coat syndrome. I lived in another state for 30+ years and my doctors (cardiologist, nephrologist, urologist and primary) all worked with me on it. I found a BP monitor that had a printer so I could print out my home readings. I would take them to my doctor visits and they did not require that my BP be taken at the office. About once a year, I brought in my monitor and they took my BP in one arm and used my BP monitor for the other arm to make sure my machine was working properly. I recently moved to a new state and my husband and I chose a doctor (much to our dismay) that would not even discuss the type of arrangements I had with my other doctors of 30+ years. Since I was short on meds, I had to go through the visit. My BP reading when they took it was 210/132 and she did not say a word about it being that high even with white coat syndrome. My other doctors, on my first visit to them, always asked more questions and delved into the extremely high blood pressure readings that they get. My normal blood pressure at home is 115/60 to 125/70.
This doctor was very rude to both my husband and to me. Her staff mirrored her attitude. Needless to say we are in the process of finding a new doctor. We are not people who are difficult with doctors and have had the same doctors for many years. Two of the doctors have become friends and have been to our home and we have interacted socially.
My white coat syndrome is not only exhausting to me, but a threat to my well being since I have an abdominal aneurysm and only one kidney. I sympathize with all who have this same reaction to blood pressure. I have tried hypnotherapy, self-hypnosis, meditation, etc. and have complete control over the rest of my life, but was never able to conquer this problem.
If you can find compassionate doctors who really care about you, they will work with you so that you suffer the minimum stress.

Apr 14, 2016
Extreme White Coat Syndrome NEW
by: Jana96

I have extremely bad white coat syndrome. I lived in another state for 30+ years and my doctors (cardiologist, nephrologist, urologist and primary) all worked with me on it. I found a BP monitor that had a printer so I could print out my home readings. I would take them to my doctor visits and they did not require that my BP be taken at the office. About once a year, I brought in my monitor and they took my BP in one arm and used my BP monitor for the other arm to make sure my machine was working properly. I recently moved to a new state and my husband and I chose a doctor (much to our dismay) that would not even discuss the type of arrangements I had with my other doctors of 30+ years. Since I was short on meds, I had to go through the visit. My BP reading when they took it was 210/132 and she did not say a word about it being that high even with white coat syndrome. My other doctors, on my first visit to them, always asked more questions and delved into the extremely high blood pressure readings that they get. My normal blood pressure at home is 115/60 to 125/70.
This doctor was very rude to both my husband and to me. Her staff mirrored her attitude. Needless to say we are in the process of finding a new doctor. We are not people who are difficult with doctors and have had the same doctors for many years. Two of the doctors have become friends and have been to our home and we have interacted socially.
My white coat syndrome is not only exhausting to me, but a threat to my well being since I have an abdominal aneurysm and only one kidney. I sympathize with all who have this same reaction to blood pressure. I have tried hypnotherapy, self-hypnosis, meditation, etc. and have complete control over the rest of my life, but was never able to conquer this problem.
Try to find a doctor who is understanding and compassionate and really cares about their patients. A doctor who works with you is so important to people with this problem.

Apr 15, 2016
Thanks for this. I'll bookmark it and come back everyone I'm in panic NEW
by: Anonymous

Thanks for this. I'll bookmark it and come back everyone I'm in panic

Apr 20, 2016
Me too! NEW
by: Anonymous

I've had white coat syndrome for about 10 years--and the NP that I saw was understanding about it and never made a huge deal of it--they would take it but didn't comment. I always worried about when I'd have to see a sub and they wouldn't get it--or as is going on now my NP left the practice and I am forced to see someone I do not know. I've been to other places, a dentist and a gynecologist that have been able to get readings that are normal--recently 122/I don't recall--but there have been times it has been higher depending on what I encountered before arriving or something strange going on in the office or something I am worried about approaching. Well generally it would be in the 140's when I saw my NP but with the new person--even tho I like her a lot--its hitting in the 160's and 170's and after my second visit there she starting talking about trying water pills--I don't really want any meds--I take enough for other things--and so now I worry about it and when I pick up my keys to leave my house I feel my heart leap out of my chest and the anxiety rise. I talk and talk to myself all the way there, I do relaxation techniques and I've started seeing a counselor in the hopes there will be something that will help. Since I am so worried over it I can't even take it at home--the more I try the higher it gets which in turn upsets me more. It's a cycle I can't break even though I know its irrational. I worry over all my health issues which I am sure also plays a part in driving up the b/p readings. So what do you do when a dr insists on giving you meds even though you believe the reading is elevated--but can't prove it? I am glad to know there are some others with such extremes. The woman I see now is nice--but I don't know if I can talk her out of pills.

Apr 20, 2016
Practice at Home NEW
by: Noreen

This is what seems to work for others. Since I've been using a wrist monitor, the one you hold up to your heart, I've had positive results. Please reread some of the previous posts to see what I am referring to.

You are not alone! We are all here with you.

Apr 20, 2016
BP PHOBIA NEW
by: Susana

So happy I found this group!!...Everytime I go to the doctor
I get really high readings..today was 170/110!!!!but at home
my reading was 123/80 . Knowing I have to see a Dr creates so much anxiety I woke up 3 times at night with palpitations and I could not breathe..I just started TM meditation and did it
before I went to the doctor felt a little better but as soon as I arrived in the office my heart was pounding with anxiety !!
I walk 5 to 6 miles everyday I feel like I am in great
physical shape, I eat really healthy, cut down salt, take a bunch of natural herbs for BP....I tried to show my home readings to the dr but he doesn't care, he says that he wants me to take BP medicine ..this always happens so I switch to a different dr..I am going to give Cognitive Therapy a tried!!
I thought I was the only one with this problem !!!!

Apr 20, 2016
BP PHOBIA NEW
by: Susana

So happy I found this group!!...Everytime I go to the doctor
I get really high readings..today was 170/110!!!!but at home
my reading was 123/80 . Knowing I have to see a Dr creates so much anxiety I woke up 3 times at night with palpitations and I could not breathe..I just started TM meditation and did it
before I went to the doctor felt a little better but as soon as I arrived in the office my heart was pounding with anxiety !!
I walk 5 to 6 miles everyday I feel like I am in great
physical shape, I eat really healthy, cut down salt, take a bunch of natural herbs for BP....I tried to show my home readings to the dr but he doesn't care, he says that he wants me to take BP medicine ..this always happens so I switch to a different dr..I am going to give Cognitive Therapy a tried!!
I thought I was the only one with this problem !!!!

Apr 20, 2016
BP PHOBIA NEW
by: Susana

So happy I found this group!!...Everytime I go to the doctor
I get really high readings..today was 170/110!!!!but at home
my reading was 123/80 . Knowing I have to see a Dr creates so much anxiety I woke up 3 times at night with palpitations and I could not breathe..I just started TM meditation and did it
before I went to the doctor felt a little better but as soon as I arrived in the office my heart was pounding with anxiety !!
I walk 5 to 6 miles everyday I feel like I am in great
physical shape, I eat really healthy, cut down salt, take a bunch of natural herbs for BP....I tried to show my home readings to the dr but he doesn't care, he says that he wants me to take BP medicine ..this always happens so I switch to a different dr..I am going to give Cognitive Therapy a tried!!
I thought I was the only one with this problem !!!!

Apr 21, 2016
Thank you! NEW
by: Librarian

Thank you to everyone who has commented here. It's so good not to feel alone in this although I don't wish it on anyone. I have anxiety disorder, and medical problems in childhood are most likely a major cause of it. Needless to say, I HATE going to the doctor and having tests. I hate the way the nurses look at me like "you're about to die" when they take my BP! I never ask them what it is there but could see it on my online records at my most recent gyn annual. I saw The bottom number was 100 and don't remember the top. I usually do ok taking it at home but this year I feel like I'm starting to get phobic to it at home too. That's when I found this board and it has helped me feel so much better. The nurse's link, above, to testing info made me realize my arm was not in the ideal place. When I put a pillow under it, I got a 117/75 62 pulse. Thank you!

My phobias unfortunately extend to all medical tests, and the older I get (47 now) the more I have to get, making me absolutely dread certain times of the year for medical exams.

The rest of my anxiety is so much better. I was agoraphobic for a bit 20 years ago, but I work and lead a regular life thanks to meds and therapy. This medical phobia seems to be getting worse however, because, as someone said, we're smart... I *know* the odds of actually getting sick go up as I age.

I feel relieved to see this boad though. The BP phobia is so common! The advice my therapist gave me this week was essentially, "screw it." You know you're fine. Don't let the nurses and docs tell you otherwise. I tend to be overly polite and passive at the doctor's office. As others of you have said, we need to be more assertive and put ourselves back in control! Way easier said than done for me, but I do appreciate all the support here.


Apr 23, 2016
Be Assertive! NEW
by: KB801

It really pays to be assertive, especially with nurses, (mine is male) that over react to our problem - I practically got into a yelling match with him on my first visit a year ago and Im so glad I did! I was normally very passive in years past, but no more. I told him I wanted to discuss my BP phobia with the Doctor before he took it - he told me the Dr. wouldnt see me unless I let him take it. I said "fine, but I want to hear it from the Dr" When I got to see the Dr he was very understanding. I did eventually let him take it and of course it was about 35% higher than at home and for the first time top number over 200 - that night at home diastolic 75! Spikes are not really harmful, or cave men would have died every time an animal came after them! The Dr. now lets me give him my home readings and NOT take it at his office - If your Doc doesn't,find one that does. It helped for me to show him this site and other comments - I printed it out on last visit.

I do take some BP meds as it helps control it (years ago "normal" was your age + 100 for systolic and anything under 100 for diastolic. So 166/99 would still be okay back then Today they have a nervous breakdown at that level.

I take atenolol which is a beta-blocker and fairly harmless with lots of benefit - it lowers your heart's need for oxygen, and also stops the physical reaction to fear a lot - And it is much easier to deal with without those physical symptoms - I used it before speeches (my other phobia) and it worked like magic.

Hang in there everyone.

Apr 27, 2016
Blood Pressure Phobia NEW
by: Melvin

Oh Thanks reading all your comments friends. I felt better that I am not the only one I am fit and work out a little heavy as well. But when I check my BP with a doc I get into a panic situation and the BP shoots higher every time I take I dont know how to conquer this

Apr 27, 2016
Hi, Melvin NEW
by: Noreen

Please read everything everyone else has written. I believe you will find some answers!

Apr 28, 2016
Check up today went well! NEW
by: Judy W.

Please people don't ignore your high blood pressure. I, like you, have become very phobic about it. As soon as that cuff is on my arm, I panic and my numbers shoot up. I did however, tell the doctor and nurses and physician's assistant about it. They are all aware. They work with me. If you don't have a doctor that'll do that, shop around until you find one that will. Believe it or not, a good doctor understands. Mine did today, and he told me a lot of people have the "white coat syndrome"...then he told me to take a deep breath and exhale and relax. When I walked into the office I was 148/72. When I left, after he retook it, I was 138/74. I am on two different blood pressure medications and I think if I have those numbers at a doctors office when I'm highly stressed, I'm probably a perfect 120/70 at home. But I chose not to ignore the high bp, because it is a silent killer. It really is. You can stroke out or have a heart attack. Please don't give up. I've read some comments from some here that won't go to the doctor because of this, and that's really very risky. Please don't do that and please don't be afraid of having to take blood pressure medication. It beats the alternative.

May 05, 2016
BP NEW
by: Anonymous

I have the same thing ,, dont know why when i see a doctor my heart is pumping automatically , with deep sound ,, when check BP 100/160, its really scared ,, when come out its normal,

May 06, 2016
Update NEW
by: Librarian

I went to the doc today, and was up front and direct with the nurse about my BP phobia. She said, "so do we not take it?" I was surprised she offered that! I said that no, you take it, but I'm warning you it will be high. It was something over a 100, but she so kindly said, "it wasn't that high!" And, "we have a lot of people like you."

Plus, I had my "homework" - list of home taken BP with mostly 117/75 type numbers. The doctor is so nice, she talked and talked to me and quietly put the cuff back on and took it and it had gone down to something over 80. (I never remember the top number!!) She also said they have a lot of people like me, and treated it pretty matter-of-fact-ly.

I told her about this message board and how helpful and reassuring it is. I told her that sometimes the nurses look at you like you're going to die right there or something and it freaks me out. She said, "we don't do that. We KNOW there are lots of people with white coat syndrome."

I was so touched by her caring manner that I actually got teary eyed. I've had her as a doctor for a long time, but never have been quite so honest. Plus, this time I also had to talk about some acid reflux which may also be influenced by anxiety. So, we talked quite a lot and she just didn't seem like some arrogant non-caring physician. I'm grateful, and I hope the same for everyone out there.

May 10, 2016
WCHT and also at home NEW
by: Anonymous

how amazing to find this list. i have been tormenting myself about this problem for years. very high when monitored by anyone, including me. so have no idea if it is high or not. have gotten over other phobias, but can't chip away at this one. nothing works.
my doc just started me on losartan---low dose. it is a high BP med that is potassium. if anyone finds something that works....please let us know.....

May 10, 2016
success I hope NEW
by: Anonymous

Tonight after many months of hating my bp machine, I decided once again to have a go, I took my machine upstairs and laid on my bed. I put the thing on, put a pillow over it so I couldn't hear the horrible buzzing noise and put the telly on. I started the machine, panicked just a little and looked at the reading expecting the usual 160 or 179 over about 90 or 100. It was 121 over 67, I was so happy I took it about 20 times because I knew it would stay low. This is just as I'm about to start some therapy for the phobia! I will still go for the therapy as I know what I'm like and tomorrow I could go back to being frightened to death to take it but at the moment so pleased with myself, it's been a real problem. I haven't been feeling too well for the past week and I think that helped me make up my mind to do this tonight. Just hoping it stays this way, at least I can now tell the doc, she may even let me reduce my dose of bp tablet, it makes me feel horrible. Keep trying everyone, if I can do it anyone can!! x

May 23, 2016
I hear everyone NEW
by: darla

I have been dealing with this phobia off and on since I was about 23 years old. I am now 58. There was a period of time in my late 30's and early 40's when it went away - not sure how but it resurfaced again around the age of 50. It's a nightmare. I have a primary care doctor who understands and has been helpful to not make me feel like a total idiot. But as we all know as you get older hypertension is not unusual. So now...both me and my doctor are concerned that I don't develop true hypertension which should be treated by medication. I am not opposed to taking the medication if I really need it, but how do you know? I don't think I have High BP. I feel totally normal and relaxed 99% of the time. But let me see a BP cuff or machine and I can feel the zinging sensations that rise the BP. This phobia makes getting my normal routine exams a nightmare. I still go to the dentist, but fret beforehand and I talk them out of even taking it. I have a doctors apt tomorrow for a normal exam for medication checkup (I have to take thyroid meds and cholesterol meds) - I told my boyfriend about my fear and he doesn't even understand. no sympathy there - which makes me feel even more weird. I was in the military in my 20's and that's when this whole mess started. I went to the hospital for a refill for my contraceptive meds and they took my BP - Ihad just walked across base and my BP was high (how high I do not know) but they freaked me out by almost telling me I had heart issues. I didn't. I did biofeedback back then and it helped a little but you have to practice that and I rather forget about the whole thing until it's time for a doctor visit. Once I fell on a hiking trip and split my head open. I self mediated my wound for fear of the BP - I am not afraid of doctors. I don't care what they want to do - just don't take my BP. Any wise words are welcome and thanks for listening.

May 23, 2016
ola fellow phobics NEW
by: Anonymous

I'm so glad i found you! I've been through hell over my BP phobia. Its been going on for about 8 years. It started at the dentist. I also have a med phobia. So i went for a deep cleaning on one side and my bp was ok but when they were going to do the otherside I was scared. I saw the needles, remembered the pain afterwards and was scared. The hygenist takes my bp it was high she says, you could have a heart attack or stroke right now! She gets the dentist. The dentist gets on me about smoking and wouldn't work on my teeth. Scared me to death! I ran to my doctor! She calmed me down and i was fine. Now years later its a full blown phobia over some idiot dentist. I've moved to the city away from my small town doctor and its been a nightmare. So tomorrow I have a new doctor to see. I'm not going to let them take my bp. That alone will get me there. I have issues to deal with and I need to get over this fear of doctors and everything they do. Thanks for all your sharing its helped more than you know.

May 25, 2016
I made it to the Doctor! NEW
by: Anonymous

I did it! I made it to the doctor. I was nervous and almost canceled the appointment. I was sure my bp went through the roof. I told the nurse about my phobia and asked if we could do the bp later. She started talking to me about everything. She got my history. Then out comes the cuff. She took it didnt tell me what it was but said she's seen worse and no it wasn't so high i needed the ER or anything. It's been 175/115 in the past. The Dr came in and talked to me about everything! 2 hours! He was awesome. I am so glad i found him. I have to see a specialist and asked the Dr if they had to take my bp. He said, Just tell them to not tell you what it is. Another tip, dont look at them when they take it. Tell them you have a phobia. Good luck folks. Just do it. If you believe in God take him with you and pray. A little one liner over and over works!

May 25, 2016
I did it too!! NEW
by: Darla

I also had my doctors apt yesterday and dental apt today. My doctor's appt was at 3:30 so I had all day to think about it, but I was busy at work so didn't really think about it until the drive there. I checked in and sat in the waiting room for about 25 minutes. They called me to the back and the nurse said "Hi I'm so and so and I'll be taking your vitals today" I thought - like hell you are - hahaha. So she weighed me took my temp, height and all that. Then we went in the exam room. I just immediately told her that I wanted the Dr. to take my BP. I told her I have dealt with this for a long time with this Dr and she was very nice. She didn't get offended - talked to me about other stuff and left. The Dr came in and did my exam (well womeans) then let me get dressed then took my BP. It was 145/92 - he said - not bad for you. I told him I know how I feel when I take it (super anxious) and I know how I feel all the other time (calm as a cucumber) He said to still practice taking it at home and when I go to other places like the dentist / eye dr. Just tell them that I know it's high and my Dr does also. That helps. I wasn't as anxious about the dentist today. But I have to go back for a crown. Ugh!

May 30, 2016
the dentist? NEW
by: J

Thank God my dentist doesn't take my BP .. I never heard of that! I would recommend taking it at home and desensitizing yourself as much as you can. Have had this for 25 years at least ... therapist helped in that she gave me tools and what to say .... I'm better but not cured but at least I can get a normal BP at home and mostly in the doctors office but I always warn them bc I can feel it go up. Good luck everybody! Doctors see this all the time and if you get a good one they'll understand

May 31, 2016
Near Me in the Chicago Area? NEW
by: Noreen

I keep asking in hopes that a new fellow sufferer lives near me, so that we could get together and commiserate.

May 31, 2016
To Noreen NEW
by: Darla

Too bad, I live in Dallas Texas. If I lived near you I would be interested in meeting up. We could help each other - Meet at Starbucks and take each others BP. Seriously, I know what you mean. I would love to find someone in my area for support.

Jun 02, 2016
BP Phobia NEW
by: Manfreda

Just back from Cardiologist for the third time...Very high reading AGAIN when I am there even if I prepare myself by doubling my BP med and a tranquilizer...usually my BP is normal but cannot control it if at doctor's. All I have to do is THINK abt a BP cuff and my pressure goes up. Every doctor tells me such high numbers are dangerous, but I am ok at home. I was given Enalapril and Atenolol along with Ativan , because I suffer from extreme Anxiety and Panic. Who should I see; a neurologist? a psychologist? Help, I have been living with this for years.

Jun 03, 2016
I did it! NEW
by: Noreen

I started using a wrist monitor a year ago and was able to take my bp at home and got acceptable numbers. So I decide to look up wrist monitor accuracy. On the Mayo Clinic website, it said the numbers might be higher than actual because wrist veins are smaller than upper arm veins. So, I took the bull by the horns and went to Walmart and bought an arm monitor, which I have been avoiding. This new one is so much better than the old arm monitor I had. It makes NO noise and it fills up quickly. IT was a very rough start, but after taking my bp about 10X over a period of about 3 hours, I "got" it down to normal. So I believe what I read from Mayo is right. Anyway, as I've said in previous posts, the best way to get over a phobia is to do that thing. Now I need to keep doing this as I have that dreaded doctor's appt. in one month. Thanks for listening, everyone. I couldn't live with this without all of you.

Jun 03, 2016
BP Phobia NEW
by: Manfreda

Thank u Maureen for yr advise. I did buy the monitor and I am trying to "befriend" it. Right now , after having gone AGAIN to my cardio, I am terribly frightened in that office. He is nice but he makes me feel like I am going to die tomorrow with these spikes of BP. I live in a small town, concerned to change....I wish I could find one that "holds" my hand and reassures me that there is hope. He said there is not much more he can do beyond the meds (remember I am quite normal at home at rest except for the Anxiety/Panic moments). He said last night I need a specialist to help me with the phobia. What? a psychiatrist? a neurologist? a psychologist? a Phobia Doctor? I am lost/ Tx all of u, wish we could talk in person like others said. Leaving for Europe soon to visit family, along with my friend Phobia. Will keep in touch from there,

Jun 03, 2016
To Manfreda NEW
by: Noreen

Just keep practicing. The phobia will subside. I tell myself, "I am not afraid of this machine, it's only a machine". Another thing I do is watch stuff on youtube. There are many short meditations to watch while you are taking your bp. This is what therapists will do, help you learn how to relax and to practice using that machine until the phobia lessens. Have a great time on your vacation. Forget that machine for that time.

Jun 03, 2016
therapist NEW
by: J

My therapist told me to think of it as funny ... I would highly recommend you find one to at least talk to about this .... they will help and they've seen all kinds of phobias ... if your insurance doesn't cover it then do what the last person said... We are why they make BP monitors, for US to use at home!!! Doctors are very aware of this too ... you might need a new cardiologist if he doesn't understand

Jun 03, 2016
High Pulse Nerves in Medical Setting NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi,

I am glad that I found this group. I thought I was the only one having this problem. I have recently brought my own bp machine and I have become obsessed taking it. I have been exercising almost everyday and I have been trying to eat healthy. I have been having this problem from a little over a year and am I only 24 years old. When I take my readings at home, they are normal. I recenty, had a panic problem where heart rate 120 beating so fast 160/90 becasue I got nervous. The second reading was heart rate 120 and 127/85. I went back today got so nervous that I told the pharmacist to leave and the reading was 125/86 heart rate 129. The second reading alone was 119/77 pulse 117. When I got home, the pulse 103 and bp 115/80. Lately my bp is alot better the only problem is I that I get nervous in a medical setting or having the nurses or pharmacist take it. I am breathing is just the word blood pressure or knowing about it makes my pulse high. My bp has been excellent I just need to get my pulse down. I am on a beta blocker but I do not think it is helping. Does anyone have suggestions? I need to get over this problem. When I talk to my mom she does not understand and she says that is crazy of me to be that way. I am trying to practice getting my pulse down. I will go to my Cardiologist on July 8.

Jun 03, 2016
High Pulse Nerves in Medical Setting NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi,

I am glad that I found this group. I thought I was the only one having this problem. I have recently brought my own bp machine and I have become obsessed taking it. I have been exercising almost everyday and I have been trying to eat healthy. I have been having this problem from a little over a year and am I only 24 years old. When I take my readings at home, they are normal. I recenty, had a panic problem where heart rate 120 beating so fast 160/90 becasue I got nervous. The second reading was heart rate 120 and 127/85. I went back today got so nervous that I told the pharmacist to leave and the reading was 125/86 heart rate 129. The second reading alone was 119/77 pulse 117. When I got home, the pulse 103 and bp 115/80. Lately my bp is alot better the only problem is I that I get nervous in a medical setting or having the nurses or pharmacist take it. I am breathing is just the word blood pressure or knowing about it makes my pulse high. My bp has been excellent I just need to get my pulse down. I am on a beta blocker but I do not think it is helping. Does anyone have suggestions? I need to get over this problem. When I talk to my mom she does not understand and she says that is crazy of me to be that way. I am trying to practice getting my pulse down. I will go to my Cardiologist on July 8.

Jun 03, 2016
in response to 24 yr old NEW
by: J

It looks like your BP is FINE and your heart rate is racing b/c you're Nervous ... there's no way to 'snap out of it' on cue ... try meditating etc but I've been to a therapist and that also helps b/c you feel validated and not crazy and they will give you coping tools ... you are NOT alone!!

Jun 04, 2016
For 24 year old NEW
by: Anonymous

I had a similar problem with my heart rate,although mine was waking me in the middle of the night racing at about 140 beats a minute. This would either happen when I was stressed or when I overdid it physically. I too am on beta blockers having found a dose that works for me.
The secret is listening to your body and I think exercising every day is overstressing you, as you say your blood prssure is fine so find a hobby that you can absorb yourself in which will calm you down.
As they say don't worry, be happy!

Jun 04, 2016
BP Phobia NEW
by: Manfreda

Hi Maureen and everyone else in same boat. Yesterday I "befriended" my BP machine and gave it a funny name...now I talk to it (my son thinks I am going cuckoo)...well, my BP went down to 123/71 (my cardio forbids anything over 129 !!!Well, in addition to that I went out a bought myself a few unnecessary items and even bought a gift for the persons that have been a major cause of my elevated anxiety. I feel better and hope to continue. I will not see my cardio until I return for my trip in October and perhaps I will have taken the BP machine by the horn. Will keep u informed, and you all let me know how u r doing. I will ck the comments from Europe. Bless u all.

Jun 05, 2016
BP and Heart rate NEW
by: Ron75

Heart Rate could be decreased with Metoprolol. About a month ago, I started a small dose of Lisinopril (Ace inhibitor). For me the Ace Inhibitor works better for BP control and the Beta Blocker (Metrprolol)for Heart rate control. When I went to 100 Mils of Metoprolol, my heart rate went from 100-125 down to below 80 on average.I was on 25 mils at first and that did almost nothing.I wonder why A cardiologist would want your BP to be below 79/129? (unless your under the age of 50). If a Cardiologist told me my 134/82 average reading was too high, I would change doctors. My age is 65, so that is a difference.

Jun 10, 2016
How i get cured of HBP with herbal medicine NEW
by: Austin Brian

MUST READ: HOW I GET CURE OF HBP WITH HERBAL MEDICINE!
I was diagnosed of HBP disease in 2013 and I have tried all I can to get cured but all to no avail, my life was gradually coming to an end, until i saw a post in a health forum about a herbal doctor from Africa who prepares herbal remedy to cure all kind of diseases including HBP disease, at first i doubted if it was real but with much pressure i decided to give it a try, when i contact this herbal doctor via his email, he prepared an a herbal remedy and sent it to me via courier service, when i received this herbal remedy, he gave me step by step instructions on how to apply it, After i applied it as instructed, i was cured of this deadly disease within 20-21days of usage, I am now free from the deadly disease, all thanks to Dr Oyekpen. Contact this great herbalist
man via his email: [email protected] or call +2348168257144,
i believe he can also help you as well,

Thanks.

Jun 10, 2016
How i get cured of HBP with herbal medicine NEW
by: Austin Brian

MUST READ: HOW I GET CURE OF HBP WITH HERBAL MEDICINE!
I was diagnosed of HBP disease in 2013 and I have tried all I can to get cured but all to no avail, my life was gradually coming to an end, until i saw a post in a health forum about a herbal doctor from Africa who prepares herbal remedy to cure all kind of diseases including HBP disease, at first i doubted if it was real but with much pressure i decided to give it a try, when i contact this herbal doctor via his email, he prepared an a herbal remedy and sent it to me via courier service, when i received this herbal remedy, he gave me step by step instructions on how to apply it, After i applied it as instructed, i was cured of this deadly disease within 20-21days of usage, I am now free from the deadly disease, all thanks to Dr Oyekpen. Contact this great herbalist
man via his email: [email protected] or call +2348168257144,
i believe he can also help you as well,

Thanks.

Jun 10, 2016
Previous 2 entries NEW
by: Anonymous

You are disgusting, using our blog to sell your "cure". An herb is NOT a cure for a phobia, which is what this blog is about. Get off!

Jun 10, 2016
agree NEW
by: J

Thanks for telling that crack pot off .... I was thinking the same thing

Jun 10, 2016
To Austin Brian NEW
by: Darla

I seriously hope that you do not EVER experience a true phobia. If you would have taken the time to read at least some of the posts here you would understand that your silly gimmick is not worthy of a post here. I hope the blog owner will delete your posts. If you have any sort of conscious you will delete them yourself. If you are trying to make a living selling these herbs, please go do it somewhere else. This is a support group for people who are dealing with a true phobia that you will never understand. Please delete your posts. Please. Thanks.

Jun 14, 2016
WOW..BIG RELIEF!!SO NICE NEW
by: Anonymous

Its so interesting to see so many people dealing with same thing!i pick up amy omron arm monitor almost always expecting it to read high and it never dissapoints!ive gotten my self up to 190/100 and had to just pack up the monitor and throw it in the bin.forgot about it and was fine for a long time!i got to join a gym and was doing pretty fine,got encouraged to pick up a monitor again and my readings were fine till i stopped exercising and got a bit indisposed sometime and decided to check it,it got to about 186/96,then started going down after about a million trys within 2hrs!its always a roller coaster till im stable in the gym.not been to see a Dr in 11yrs cos i got the phobia from the DR's office about 10yrs ago when it read 170/100 and the Dr panicked!i stay in NIGERIA and ive just actlly been laughing and happy reading all the comments here cos ive been trying to take my readings since yestaerday and it started from 180 till it got to 140/90 yesterday,today it stayed a lot in the 150S and kept fluctuating till i got a 142/74 and quickly unstrapped it!reading people's experiences have helped reassure me im not hypertensive.twice ive been given drugs for HBP and i dint take them and i figure out if the spikes portend as much danger as i was told,i wont be typing this and smiling now!

Jun 14, 2016
WOW..BIG RELIEF!!SO NICE NEW
by: Anonymous

Its so interesting to see so many people dealing with same thing!i pick up amy omron arm monitor almost always expecting it to read high and it never dissapoints!ive gotten my self up to 190/100 and had to just pack up the monitor and throw it in the bin.forgot about it and was fine for a long time!i got to join a gym and was doing pretty fine,got encouraged to pick up a monitor again and my readings were fine till i stopped exercising and got a bit indisposed sometime and decided to check it,it got to about 186/96,then started going down after about a million trys within 2hrs!its always a roller coaster till im stable in the gym.not been to see a Dr in 11yrs cos i got the phobia from the DR's office about 10yrs ago when it read 170/100 and the Dr panicked!i stay in NIGERIA and ive just actlly been laughing and happy reading all the comments here cos ive been trying to take my readings since yestaerday and it started from 180 till it got to 140/90 yesterday,today it stayed a lot in the 150S and kept fluctuating till i got a 142/74 and quickly unstrapped it!reading people's experiences have helped reassure me im not hypertensive.twice ive been given drugs for HBP and i dint take them and i figure out if the spikes portend as much danger as i was told,i wont be typing this and smiling now!

Jun 15, 2016
TRY THIS AT HOME NEW
by: Anonymous

Been in the same boat with almost everyone here.i dread appointments too and ive had to plead with Drs to exclude taking my bp readings from my check ups!ive asked if there is a way to check by just drawing blood and checking at the Lab.Reading posts from people who have had this phobia for 20yrs+ assures me that im not supposed to be on bp meds that i av consistently refused anyway.i dont want to get stuck on stuff i dont need!So i tried a few tricks.1,anytime my monitor goes above 200,i cut it off.when i did this i got a reading of abt 160/100 which was normally 180+,then i read up that if you just finished jogging or running,you could go up to 190 so i if you are not hypertensive,checked after running and i got 175,big relief!then once i got in the phone with a friend and strapped my monitor on and pressed it,i got 142/70,tried it the 3rd time and got 138/68!so i played a trick on my mind and it worked!that was same day i had got 170/100.

Jun 15, 2016
I had forgotten.... NEW
by: Anonymous

I had forgotten that I used to call a friend while I took my bp and it was always normal. Then, one day I began to think it wouldn't work, so it didn't. The mind can really do strange things. But anyway, talking with a good friend can be a great distraction. She was the only friend/family member I had told that I had this problem.

Jun 15, 2016
ANY CONQUERORS YET? NEW
by: Anonymous

So nice reading all this!i just bumped into this site in frustration just scrolling around looking for a solution to this age old challenge of bp phobia!now is there anyone who has practical steps to overcoming bp monitor phobia yet?is there anyone who isnt on bp meds or any other and has overcome this phobia?is there anyone who has had this phobia for more than 20yrs?please i'll like to know.

Jun 15, 2016
I found the below piece of Information from an Anxiety Blog, hope this helps NEW
by: Tauqeer

It’s not your thoughts or emotions that keep you stuck and keep you suffering, it’s your constant struggle, constant searching to get rid of them that does. If your open to anything there is no struggle. Less struggle = Less suffering, Less struggle = Thoughts and emotions change naturally. You can’t force or create a particular state through struggle or personal will, this just creates more of what you are trying to get rid of.

Be open to any state

My own recovery came when I saw enough to give up this fight to control and change how I felt, the same thoughts and feelings were there for a while, but I lost interest in them, without my interest, without the constant fighting, the constant struggle I started to feel some peace and I came out of these thoughts and emotions far quicker, they felt lighter, less serious, had less impact.


If a person was able to no longer fear any state they were in then recovery is inevitable. It is your fear of the state you are in, the story you put around it, the constant struggle. So much suffering is self created through lack of understanding, yet we think it is an outside force doing this to us, it is not. So let go and have trust that your mind and body knows how to heal itself without your constant attempts at manipulation.

Jun 16, 2016
NATURAL REMEDY ACCORDING TO THIS MEMO. NEW
by: Anonymous

Hello All,
This man claimed to have natural way to reverse HBP, I don't want to be the only one to know this, pls anybody could try him. I have not tried yet, I want to listen to you all, pls react.

To
ADEMOLA

Today at 10:05 AM





Good morning, ADEMOLA

Do you know your doctor is probably your problem?

"White-coat hypertension" is a term used for when a high blood pressure reading is caused by the stress or fear associated with a doctor or hospital visit. This can be a transient yet serious concern.

It's estimated that up to 20 percent of people diagnosed with hypertension actually only have white-coat hypertension, which means their blood pressure was only elevated because they were nervous.

The problem with our physicians is if your blood pressure is elevated due to white-coat hypertension, you may be prescribed drugs for high blood pressure that you don’t really need. The solution to this problem is simple – check your blood pressure at home or in another location where you’re relaxed to confirm the results from your doctor’s office.

Blood pressure measurements should be obtained outside of a clinical setting for diagnostic confirmation before starting treatment.


Blood Pressure Readings Higher When Taken by Doctors Compared To Nurses

When researchers from the University of Exeter Medical School analyzed blood pressure readings from more than 1,000 patients, they noticed a significant discrepancy in readings taken by doctors and nurses.

Blood pressure readings taken by doctors were significantly higher (by 7/4 mmHg) than those taken by nurses, even though the readings were of the same person on the same day.

The difference in readings was large enough to push some patients into the high-blood pressure category, which means they could be receiving unnecessary or inappropriate treatment. The researchers described the "white-coat effect" as a subconscious or reflex effect.

In short, when a doctor takes your blood pressure it may trigger your fight-or-flight response, which ramps up your blood pressure. Past research suggests older females are particularly vulnerable to white-coat hypertension, especially when the reading is taken by a male doctor.

The presence of a student or "doctor in training" has also been linked with higher blood pressure readings. It’s estimated that 75 percent of patients with high blood pressure may also be affected by the white-coat effect.

If you find yourself feeling stressed before a blood-pressure screening, to decrease your risk of being falsely diagnosed with hypertension in this situation, take a moment to calm down.

Be sure to arrive for your appointment ahead of time so you can unwind, then breathe deeply and relax when you're getting your blood pressure taken.


To learn more about our natural high blood pressure therapy click here. It is tested and proven to reverse permanent and without side effect. For Diabetes breakthrough treatment .Click here


Have a great and blessed day.


Your Friend And Health Educator,
Adelodun Dele Victor
08065187307

Jun 16, 2016
NATURAL REMEDY AS CLAIMED NEW
by: Anonymous

You can try this man whom i'm trying to contact but I have not, let me listen to you all.

To
ADEMOLA

Today at 10:05 AM





Good morning, ADEMOLA

Do you know your doctor is probably your problem?

"White-coat hypertension" is a term used for when a high blood pressure reading is caused by the stress or fear associated with a doctor or hospital visit. This can be a transient yet serious concern.

It's estimated that up to 20 percent of people diagnosed with hypertension actually only have white-coat hypertension, which means their blood pressure was only elevated because they were nervous.

The problem with our physicians is if your blood pressure is elevated due to white-coat hypertension, you may be prescribed drugs for high blood pressure that you don’t really need. The solution to this problem is simple – check your blood pressure at home or in another location where you’re relaxed to confirm the results from your doctor’s office.

Blood pressure measurements should be obtained outside of a clinical setting for diagnostic confirmation before starting treatment.


Blood Pressure Readings Higher When Taken by Doctors Compared To Nurses

When researchers from the University of Exeter Medical School analyzed blood pressure readings from more than 1,000 patients, they noticed a significant discrepancy in readings taken by doctors and nurses.

Blood pressure readings taken by doctors were significantly higher (by 7/4 mmHg) than those taken by nurses, even though the readings were of the same person on the same day.

The difference in readings was large enough to push some patients into the high-blood pressure category, which means they could be receiving unnecessary or inappropriate treatment. The researchers described the "white-coat effect" as a subconscious or reflex effect.

In short, when a doctor takes your blood pressure it may trigger your fight-or-flight response, which ramps up your blood pressure. Past research suggests older females are particularly vulnerable to white-coat hypertension, especially when the reading is taken by a male doctor.

The presence of a student or "doctor in training" has also been linked with higher blood pressure readings. It’s estimated that 75 percent of patients with high blood pressure may also be affected by the white-coat effect.

If you find yourself feeling stressed before a blood-pressure screening, to decrease your risk of being falsely diagnosed with hypertension in this situation, take a moment to calm down.

Be sure to arrive for your appointment ahead of time so you can unwind, then breathe deeply and relax when you're getting your blood pressure taken.


To learn more about our natural high blood pressure therapy click here. It is tested and proven to reverse permanent and without side effect. For Diabetes breakthrough treatment .Click here


Have a great and blessed day.


Your Friend And Health Educator,
Adelodun Dele Victor
08065187307

Jun 16, 2016
Oh, brother NEW
by: Anonymous

It seems you haven't read all this blog. Everyone on this blog knows what you have just written (2X). From your grammar and content it seems like you are from another country and are trying to sell something. Go away

Fellow sufferers: Our blog has been hacked several times, now.

Oh, and by the way, I have gotten lower readings from doctor's than nurses.

Jun 16, 2016
agree with above NEW
by: J

I thought the same thing ... at least the 'links' to what they're selling didn't show up

Jun 16, 2016
Support Group :) NEW
by: Melissa Nielsen

This is the 3rd time I have posted. I've had my phobia since 1993. The ONLY time my blood pressure is high is when I'm at the doctor. As high as 185/105 2 hours later at home it is 110/70. I check it with a wrist monitor. I wasnt always comfortable with it but after many years I am now. If my numbers were ever consistently high at home I would consider going on med but don't feel it necessary for now. This support group means so much to me! I understand every single one of you and it brings me comfort to know I'm not alone! I know my feelings are irrational but my brain doesn't care!!!! Looking for a new doctor as mine died last year. Stressed to explain my situation as I ramble and always feel emotional,crazy and judged. I'm in Salt Lake City if anyone is near:) Best of luck to everyone with upcoming medical appointments!

Melissa

Jul 20, 2016
same bananna NEW
by: Anonymous

Got the same problem here.. but hey let us look at the bright side. This issue made me live healthier. I mean if I exercise, eat right and sleep well then chances are that my blood pressure would be on normal level. I think the only way to battle this is to live healthy. Exercise, eat right, have a good rest and just manage daily life stress levels. If you look at it, if you think you are healthy enough your fear would go away. I'm having progress now as I slowly manage to lower my stress level when someone is taking my BP. If you are confident that you are healthy, then I think this phobia will go away. Hope this helps.

Aug 09, 2016
Cuff size NEW
by: Anonymous

I'm amazed that I have a phobia family, I thought I was the only one on the planet scared of a dopey machine. It's now hidden at the back of a very dark cupboard.
I seem to have WC syndrome as well but I wonder if it is the cuff size at the doctor's surgery. All the info says to make sure you use the correct size cuff but my doctor seems to use the same one for all, big arms, medium or small. My reading was 140 in the nurse's room and 165 in the doctor's room.

Aug 09, 2016
Too bad! NEW
by: Anonymous

Something has happened to our blog and it's a shame. It's no longer what it used to be, which was very helpful. It's now taken over by ads and people trying to sell things. I will ask this one more time....is there anyone in the Chicago area? I'd like to get together to commiserate our problem?

Aug 13, 2016
Me too NEW
by: Anonymous

I have been fighting this fear for years. I hate it too, it seems so stupid! My problem with machine is when it starts to squeeze again when it's a high reading. then I know and panic more. No one has mentioned this I wish machine would not do that and like everyone says we need an "instant reading" I do have high blood pressure but never know what actual reading is.

Sep 15, 2016
Hyperventilation helped me lower NEW
by: KB801

I had to undergo an exam to get life insurance and the agent told me to try fast and rapid creating before being measured - if you've seen my previous posts you know I have the phobia big time, been as high as 200+/100+ in the office and much lower after and that evening (less than 120, less than 75).

I figured I'd never get a normal reading at the exam, but tried the hyperventilation and it was 103/83! I was thrilled! I had life insurance without the exam but it was more than 3 times more expensive than if you passed.

Reading up on it studies show it generally doesn't work well with people that have normal readings at the drs office, but those with WCH have much more significant reductions - they don't know why.

Give it a try!

Sep 20, 2016
right there with you with BP NEW
by: Glenn

I don't dread getting a tooth pulled as much as seeing my family doc. She does let me bring in my own readings and they used to be low. Now the fear has spread to at home and work where the readings were good....not anymore....so I have no clue if I need more BP meds or not.....

One thing all of you should check is if you have lyme disease....as my lyme progressed (did not know I had it until last year) phobias and anxiety, depression got worse....I am trying Bach Remedies and they have been a large help but not in that area yet....as far as lyme get the blood test from Igenix and as far as Bach remedy it's Mimulus for "known fears"..it may help you...

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