Are you a hypochondriac?

It's late at night and you're lying awake again about that strange stomach ache you get every few weeks. Could it be an ulcer? Possibly cancer? How will your family cope without you?

You've already been to the doctor - several times. And both she and the specialist have assured you you're completely fine. Nothing more than a bit of indigestion. But you are sure they are both horribly wrong.

You have also already made your will, cleaned your cupboards and stuck your kids' names underneath the pieces of furniture you would like them to have. Because you are sure your life is coming to an end. Sixth sense, or are you just a hypochondriac?

What is hypochondria?
Someone who suffers from hypochondria is fixated obsessively on their health. For at least six months this person has been convinced that he/she is seriously ill, despite the fact that doctors reassure them that there is nothing wrong with them. This obsession affects their daily lives, and their relationships, and also frequently leads to all sorts of unnecessary and expensive medical treatments.

Hypochondria is found in equal numbers among men and women, and is found in all age groups and economic classes.

Hypochondriacs have a tendency to misinterpret normal physical symptoms. Headaches are a good example of this. Someone who is not a hypochondriac will simply take a headache tablet and forget about it, but a hypochondriac will be convinced that it is the first sign of a brain tumour.

So are you a hypochondriac? This quiz will tell you!

What happens when you phone your doctor?

When was the last time you were ill?

If you have been really ill, and someone tells you you're looking better, how does that make you feel?

How do you think others react to your ailments?

Do you think the doctor is lying to you when he tells you that you're fine?

What does your medicine chest look like?

Where do you find your medical information?

What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

For three days you've had a pain in your lower back. What do you do about it?

Your favourite TV programme is:

How do you feel about your medical scheme?

When you get a headache, you think that