COVID Long-Haul Symptoms Or Anxiety Symptoms?

Written by Jim Folk
Medically reviewed by Marilyn Folk, BScN.
Last updated August 12, 2021

Video Transcript:

Anxiety Question:

I just recovered from covid, and I really feel like it sent my body back into hyperstimulation like when I first struggled with anxiety and symptoms.

The problem is that when I read about post covid or long haul covid, it describes symptoms very similar to sensitization (dizziness and nausea).

It also states covid can cause anxiety and depression. Is this true, or do you think it was just rough on my body, and I will recover once my body calms down?

Answer:

I am sorry to hear you got COVID but glad to hear you are feeling much better. That’s great!

First, COVID doesn’t cause anxiety or depression. Those are states caused by behavior.

However, if you were worried about COVID or feel drained physically and emotionally because of having it, that can cause states of anxiety and feeling depressed.

Also, in this case, feeling “anxious” or “depressed” isn’t “bad.” It’s understandable to be concerned when dealing with a yet-to-be-understood virus and during recovery from it. This is a normal part of the human experience. Most people feel that way when battling COVID.

Second, talk with your doctor about your symptoms.

However, don’t be surprised if your doctor isn’t sure either. There is still a lot to learn about COVID and its after-effects.

Moreover, if your doctor isn’t knowledgeable about anxiety and hyperstimulation, you might not get the information you are hoping for. So again, don’t be surprised if you come away still wondering which is which.

In my opinion, since there is still a lot to learn about COVID and its after-effects, it will be difficult to say which are symptoms of hyperstimulation (which I’m sure some are because of the stress and concern caused by fighting off the virus) and which are long-haul COVID symptoms.

Because there will be some ambiguity, I suggest focusing on helping your body recover from the virus and stress, and let time reveal which is which.

One thing is certain: worrying about your lingering symptoms won’t help one bit but can cause symptoms of stress to linger if that’s what they are.

I encourage you to assume they are symptoms of stress, faithfully practice your recovery strategies, and let time pass. As your body recovers from the after-effects of stress, you will know which is which.

For instance, symptoms of hyperstimulation will subside, whereas long-haul COVID symptoms might not for a while yet.

In any case, your symptoms will resolve in time. You can speed up recovery time if you faithfully practice your recovery strategies, contain well, be optimistic, and remain patient.

Whatever is causing your symptoms, it will end in time.

If you are a spiritual person, you can ask God to provide clarity, guide your course of action, and heal your body. God is still listening, acting, and providing miracles.

Sadly today, many people don’t involve God in every aspect of their lives. He still wants to be involved and is willing to help where appropriate to His timing and plan.

I’ve gotten into the habit of consulting with God on all matters of my life, including my health. It’s truly made a difference for me.

So, that’s the course of action I suggest you take based on your current situation.  While there is still some uncertainty, it should become clearer in time.

The combination of good self-help information and working with an experienced anxiety disorder therapist, coach, or counselor is the most effective way to address anxiety and its many symptoms. Until the core causes of anxiety are addressed – which we call the underlying factors of anxiety – a struggle with anxiety unwellness can return again and again. Dealing with the underlying factors of anxiety is the best way to address problematic anxiety.

Additional Resources

Return to our Anxiety Frequent Questions archive.

anxietycentre.com: Information, support, and therapy for anxiety disorder and its symptoms, including Covid Long-Haul Symptoms Or Anxiety Symptoms.