A surprising percentage of Hong Kong adults seem to be suffering from hypochondria.

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It’s all in their heads

HONGKONG: More than one of every 10 Hong Kong adults is a hypochondriac who wrongly believes he or she is suffering from a serious illness, a survey released yesterday showed.

Researchers at the Chinese University estimated that 570,000, or 11% of all adults, suffer from some form of hypochondria or chronic abnormal anxiety.

Sufferers get trapped in a ‘‘vicious spiral’’ in which anxiety over their imagined illnesses makes them unable to cope with normal work and office situations, researchers said.

Adults aged 45 to 54 are the most prone to hypochondria, and about a third of hypochondriacs suffer sleeping problems and 27% suffer fatigue, the survey of 3,000 people found. dpa

hypochondriac – a person who worries a lot about their health and thinks that they are ill when they are not
release – to allow something to be shown or known to the public or to be available for use เปิดเผย, ปล่อยข่าว
estimate – to say what you think an amount or value is or will be, either by using available information or by guessing คาดคะเน
chronic – (of a disease or pain) serious and lasting for a long time เป็นประจำ
abnormal – not usual or typical ผิดปกติ ไม่ธรรมดา
anxiety – an uncomfortable feeling of nervousness or worry about something that is happening or might happen in the future ความวิตกกังวล
trapped – to be in a dangerous or unpleasant situation from which it is difficult or impossible to escape ถูกกับดัก
vicious spiral – a process in which the existence of a problem causes other problems, and this makes the original problem worse วงจรของปัญหา, สถานการณ์หมุนเวียนที่ใช้แก้ปัญหาแต่ยิ่งทำให้เลวร้ายมากขึ้น
cope – to deal successfully with a difficult situation  รับมือกับprone to likely to experience a particular problem more often than is usual ที่มีแนวโน้ม
fatigue – a feeling of being extremely tired, either physically or mentally

About the author

Writer: Terry Fredrickson
Position: Education Marketing and Support Manager