Meds, Mind, Body & Benefits > Mental Health & HIV

Stribild, Anxiety and Eating

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GrlPozX:
Hi,

I am newly diagnosed. I started my meds 2 days ago. Im on Stribild. My doc says my anxiety is not from the meds. I'm dealing with major anxiety.. Which I have a history of. Also, I'm having a REALLY hard time eating. How can I get through this? I'm lightheaded, dizzy, scared. Has anyone else experienced this and if so, how did you cope?

tednlou2:
Sorry to hear about the anxiety.  I deal with it, too.  Anxiety can cause all sorts of physical things, as you know.  I was recently at a crowded event, which made my anxiety worse.  I had this feeling like I was on a boat, and like my legs were going to give out.  Of course, I began worrying I had blood sugar issues, or something else.  I think it was just the anxiety, which can raise blood pressure and mess with blood sugar.

If it is causing you to not be able to eat much, then that will obviously mess with your glucose levels.  What have you done about your anxiety?  Are you taking depression meds or anxiety meds?  Therapy?  These are the ways I'm coping.  All those things, and I also take a beta-blocker, which I think helps a lot.  But, for me, they have definitely made the anxiety better, but have not totally eliminated it. 

All the best,

Ted

BT65:
I've had anxiety/panic for years.  I've learned to talk myself through it.  I am on an anti-depressant, but do not take any benzo's.  I used to (take benzo's).   Sometimes when I am driving the anxiety is so bad I'll have to pull over for a minute.  Also when I'm grocery shopping, I get bad anxiety/panic.  That's when I talk myself through the attack.

I'm on Stribild and have found it does not worsen the anxiety.  I would imagine your anxiety is caused by other feelings, not the Stribild, though of course I am not a doctor.  There is something called cognitive behavioral therapy that really does work with anxiety.  The idea is changing thought patterns; because if you change the thought, you change the situation.  I would find a therapist that knows how to do this.  It really does make a difference!

Miss Philicia:
Like Betty, I was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder 12 years ago. I also took benzos for it which I found helpful, but they also are addictive so they are perhaps not given out so much these days. It is far better to learn skills through cognitive behavioral therapy that allow you to somewhat control the issue when anxiety kicks in. And yes, like you when I have bad periods of prolonged anxiety (though it doesn't happen to me any longer) my appetite decreases greatly.

I'm not a doctor and don't want to act like one, but if you have a discussion with your doctor about this issue as you should, make sure you mention the appetite aspect and gently inquire if a medication like Remeron (mirtazapine) would be helpful. It's not a benzo class medication, and is often used for anxiety disorder in conjunction with a suppressed appetite. I took it for years and only stopped when it made me gain too much weight. If you do go on this make sure to discuss how to taper off of it because stopping cold turkey will cause withdrawal issues.

oksikoko:

--- Quote from: GrlPozX on August 26, 2013, 08:37:18 PM ---Hi,

I am newly diagnosed. I started my meds 2 days ago. Im on Stribild. My doc says my anxiety is not from the meds. I'm dealing with major anxiety.. Which I have a history of. Also, I'm having a REALLY hard time eating. How can I get through this? I'm lightheaded, dizzy, scared. Has anyone else experienced this and if so, how did you cope?

--- End quote ---

It's not clear if you're saying you're too anxious to eat or that you have no appetite because of Stribild. Others have talked about the anxiety, so I'll put it aside.

I've had little to no appetite since starting Stribild, though I believe it's a coincidence. More importantly, how do I cope with that and is it helpful to you?

I just gave up on the idea of "meals" and now I eat a handful of this or a handful of that throughout the day. I try to make the handfuls something "healthy" like dried fruits and nuts and not peppermint patties, which are delicious. The closest thing coming to a meal that I can stand thinking about eating is tiramisu, but I mean, there's bread and milk and all kinds of good stuff in there.

To avoid long-term nutritional deficits, try eating smaller portions of whatever natural food you can stomach for now: apples, applesauce, raisins, dates, figs, walnuts, whatever. It's OK to miss a few nutrients here and there, but you want to keep something in your system while you work this out. Good luck!

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