I've been dealing with anxiety for about 3 years now. It started when my father got very sick and my grandfather passed away at the same time. Ever since then when things are stressing me out the anxiety and panic attacks start back up. I do go through periods where the panic attacks are gone, but at some point they always come back. It's always been manageable though. Not pleasant, but manageable.
My question has to do with always feeling hungry. As long as I can remember I've always felt hungry, like I needed to eat every couple of hours. I would eat and feel fine. I never gained weight, and it never interfered with my life. But recently it's gotten a lot worse (about the past month). I'm constantly hungry. Like starving. My stomach hurts so bad - there is an intense gnawing hunger pain at the back of my stomach, and gurgling hungry bubbles on top. This pain is located right under my ribs and down to my belly button. Then I start to have anxiety attacks. I start freaking out that it's low blood sugar and I'm going to pass out or something, so a panic attack starts. Sometimes after I eat I feel better, but sometimes I don't. Sometimes I'm just as hungry as before I started eating. If I do feel better, the feeling of satiety only lasts two hours at most.
I also wake up during the night with intense hunger pains and anxiety, and I'm usually sweaty. This usually happens 1-3 hours after going to sleep. And I do eat a snack before going to bed. Usually some whole wheat toast with peanut butter and a glass of skim milk. I never needed to do this before. When waking up at night, I eat a granola bar or something and usually fall back asleep for about 5-6 hours. But when I wake up in the morning I'm instantly in a state of anxiety and my stomach hurts. I eat right away, but it doesn't help. I've also gained weight because all I do is sit around all day and eat. I've stopped exercising, because my stomach pains start when I'm exercising and then the anxiety attack starts and I need to eat something. I've stopped doing my normal activities because I'm afraid my blood sugar is too low and I'll pass out. I'm also bloated and have gas (sorry!). My anxiety is just getting worse and worse over this. It's stopping me from having a normal life.
I guess my main question is, could I have hypoglycemia? Or is my anxiety making me feel hungry all the time and making me believe I have hypoglycemia? As far back as I remember I have always needed to eat often, but it never ruined my life like this.
I thought maybe it was an acid problem because of the anxiety, so I tried Prilosec OTC. I took it for about 8 days and stopped because I felt like it was making my anxiety worse and it did nothing for my stomach. I've been taking 40 mg of Pepcid AC every day, but that doesn't seem to help either.
Sorry this is so long, but I wanted to include as many details as possible. Please help! I appreciate any comments.
Once you know you anxiety is not related to a medical condition you can start working on ways to cure your anxiety.
Since you mention that everything started when your father got very sick and the lost of your grandfather at the same time, i wouldn't be surprised if you are suffering from depression which is highly related to anxiety and it is called an anxio-depressive mood.
There are many treatments available to treat depression/anxiety. The first line treatment should be a therapy.
Keeping good lifestyle habits like physical activity and healthy diet ( good nutriments, vitamins and minerals intake ) are also important. There are also a lot of natural remedies that are proven to be efficient in the treatment of depression and anxiety.
Finally there are antidepressants drugs.
Please consider that I'm not a doctor and those are all issues that must be discussed with you doctor ( including verifying if you are suffering from hypoglycemia too ).
Thanks a lot for getting back to me so quickly. I've thought about depression, but didn't think I had it because until recently (the past month) I've always been happy. Even when things were rough, I would have anxiety, but no sadness. But recently, since my anxiety has been getting so bad I have been more depressed. I feel so down and upset that I'm letting my life get so out of control. I used to be such a fun person and now I don't want to do anything because I'm so afraid of having an anxiety attack.
I do want to get tested for hypoglycemia, because then I would know for sure, but unfortunately, part of my anxiety is a fear of going to the doctor. It's not the doctor in general, but I'm really afraid of needles, blood, etc.
So I'm really torn, and I think that's making my anxiety worse right now. I'm sick of my stomach being in pain, I'm sick of being afraid of passing out due to low blood sugar, and I'm sick of eating all the time....but I'm also afraid to go to the doctor.
You need to be tested for hypoglycemia and forget about that fear of going to the doctor. Personally i opted for private medical clinic which can be less overwhelming than an hospital and it might be a good choice for you since of your fear of doctors. I don't have any fear of going to the doctor but i had extremely good success with the private clinic in contrary to my experience of seeing a doc thru the use of the ER. I think doctors are less stressed and have more time for you in private clinics which is a good thing and might in someway help you overcome your fear of doctors. Anyway, finding a good, careful, passionate doctor might be relatively hard and you must not stop to try finding a good doctor until you find one nor limit yourself based on previous experiences.
That's my opinion and i do really hope you go to the doctor.
I bought myself a gluclose monitor on Amazon (make sure you get the test strips, control solution and lancets plus monitor- they sometimes sell things separately so it can be confusing). I wanted to rule out hypoglycemia also. Remember it can be a low reading AND a quick drop from high to lower. It has helped me to notice a pattern and reassure myself that for me it is mainly anxiety causing it. I do eat something every 2 hours because I feel better when I do. I avoid like the plague sugar, white starches and the like. I focus on high protein and good fat snacks with a whole grain carb thrown in. Hope that helps Eating correctly will help with anxiety .. there are a lot of good books that outline this. Living Well with anxiety ..what you need to know that your Doctor wont tell you.. is one of my favorites. Also the anxiety and phobia workbook by Edmund Bourne is very comprehensive in many ways. Hang in there : ) I am in the middle of a bad episode myself for the past 3 months so I understand.
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