Anxiety can cause even the calmest person to act different and it can cause stress, which affects the body in different ways. One way that anxiety affects the body is to cause the lymph nodes to swell. These glands can be a little temperamental and swell up whenever there is trouble but they are not having little temper tantrums; they are getting geared up to do some major cleanup. Occasionally the node is of normal size but an anxious person perceives it being enlarged. It is common for them to swell up when there are signs of infection, disease, and excessive debris in the body. Less common cause of enlargement is cancer that has spread from other parts of the body. For someone who is already anxious, swollen lymph nodes can add to nervousness because of the fear that it is caused by cancer even though the fact is that swelling can because by a number of other reasons and it being causes by cancer is rare.

Causes of Swollen Lymph Nodes in People With Anxiety

People who have an occasional bout of anxiety rarely have health issues caused by the stress. For those who suffer regularly with anxiety, it can take its toll on the body. Stress can cause the immune system to become weak and then a person is susceptible to the following:

  • Illness
  • Infection
  • Disease
  • Fatigue
  • Injury
  • Dehydration

The body will react and rise up to fight when there are problems. Among the main fighters are the lymph nodes and they start posturing and puffing up ready to fight at the first signs of trouble. It isn’t clear why when there is no illness or disease that people with anxiety notice swollen lymph nodes. One cause may be tense muscles that push the node up in a position that is more noticeable.

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Tension From Anxiety

Anxious people often have a lot of tension in their body. This tension can cause muscles to ache and become sore. When muscles get tense it can cause the lymph nodes to become more prominent, especially the nodes on the neck. Other places that lymph nodes may swell include the following:

  • Throat
  • Armpit
  • Groin

There are 500-600 nodes throughout the body with many of them in areas where the nodes are not noticed even if they are enlarged. Some types of anxiety will cause a person to hyper focus and the body can be one of them. Nodes that are of normal size and disease free may feel enlarged to an anxious person, which just breeds more anxiety. This happens because the first cause that comes to mind is cancer even though most often the time the cause is a simple infection that will run its course with little or no treatment.

Treating Swollen Lymph Nodes from Anxiety

When lymph nodes are swollen there commonly isn’t any reason for concern but if there is concern, then a simple check up can relieve the health anxiety. For some who are overly anxious due to an anxiety disorder, medication to balance the chemical imbalance may be helpful. Sometimes distraction techniques can help control the impulse to obsess on a health issue like swollen lymph glands. Techniques can be found at For those with lymph nodes that are swollen it is often safe to just let it run its course but there are times to get nodes checked. There are some of the signs that the lymph nodes are gearing up for a serious fight and these are the signs that a physician should examine an enlarged node:

  • Rubbery texture
  • Fixed location
  • Rapidly increasing in size
  • Does not return to normal size in 2-3 weeks
  • Unexplained weight loss

If there are other unexplainable health issues it could be an additional sign that the node needs to be checked. After the results of an examination are received, a treatment plan will be made. When there is a serious infection from bacteria like MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus-aureus) or a vial infection, it will need to be treated before the lymph node will return to its original size. When cancer is the cause then the cancer will need to be treated which can include surgery, chemo, and other types of cancer treatment.

Read About – Neck Lymph Nodes

Knowing the signs and symptoms of lymphoma, different types of cancer, and serious infection then it will be easier to determine if a physician needs to be consulted to examine it. When there are no signs of health problems or after an exam doesn’t come up with any illness it may be necessary to get mental health help to deal with anxiety that is related to health issues.