Bookmark and Share

My Anxiety Made My First Gyn Visit An Unpleasant Experience

Published: March 18, 2015
Dear My Anxiety Made My First Gyn Visit An Unpleasant Experience,

I just recently went to the gynecologist for the first time. It was such an unpleasant experience. I was so stressed, nervous, and tense. I did tell the doctor right away that I have GAD and that I was extremely nervous. The doctor couldn't even insert the speculum because I was so tense and had to switch to a smaller one. That then made it harder for her to do the exam. It kind of hurt me a little bit, maybe not like pain but just like discomfort and pressure probably because I was so tense. But it was enough that I kept kind of moving and lifting my bottom a little bit and becuase I did that she would have to reposition it so she could see my cervix again which just cause more discomfort. And when she did the part with her finger she even told me to just try and relax my stomach because I ws so tense just from her touch it. I almost cried and kept having to tell myself to just breathe. The doctor was so nice though. She did everything she could to help me feel comfortable. She kept telling me to just relax. She would ask me questions and just talk to me to keep my mind occupied. And whenever I kind of moved or seemed very uncomfortable she asked me if I was okay. I really liked that she showed she really cared. I know if I hadn't been so tense it would have been a lot easier. I just couldn't get myself to calm down. The problem I'm having now is that anytime I think about the appointment my anxiety symptoms start, like chest pressure and tightness, like a lump in my throat feeling, etc. I know it's done and over with but it's still making me feel like this and I can't stop thinking about it every now and then. I feel like maybe I should talk to my counselor about this next time I see her but but I don't see her for another two weeks, and I think I'd be really embarrassed to bring it up. Can you help me at all?


Dear My Anxiety Made My First Gyn Visit An Unpleasant Experience,

TeenHealthFX is sorry that your anxiety with this has been so intense and that it affected you so much during and after your appointment. While we can appreciate that your anxiety around this issue has been very difficult to deal with, we do think you have two positive things on your side. The first is that you had a good experience with the gynecologist you met with in terms of finding her to be patient and caring. The second is that you are currently working with a therapist who should be able to assist you with these issues.

Moving forward, FX would recommend two things:

  1. The first is to read our answer to How Can I Help Ease My Anxiety About My Gyn Appointment? so that you can get information on relaxation techniques such as breathing exercises and imagery work to use before and during your appointments (or any time you start to feel anxiety connected to this issue).

  2. The second is to discuss this issue with your therapist. FX can appreciate that this is a topic that is very personal to you and that could potentially feel embarrassing for you to discuss. But it is important to remember that your therapist is not there to judge you, but rather to help you work this through. Your gynecologist was able to approach you with patience, understanding and care in terms of the anxiety you were feeling – and your therapist should certainly be able to approach this topic with the same energy. Your therapist could work with you on what is triggering this intense anxiety, as well as on ways to cope with the anxiety. Depending on the frequency and intensity of your anxiety, you might also discuss with your therapist the possibility of meeting with a psychiatrist to see if you would benefit from taking an anti-anxiety medication. Your therapist should be able to refer you to someone reputable.

Again, FX can appreciate how hard it has been to manage your anxiety around this issue. However, we think that between your positive view of your gynecologist and the work you can do with your therapist that you will be able to find a way to successfully and effectively deal with your anxiety around your gyn visits.

Ratings