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Old 12-27-2012, 04:33 PM   #1
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Afraid to Eat! - Phobia of Anaphylaxis

Ok, I'm new to this forum posting thing, but here it goes with my first post...

I know this sounds strange, but I am absolutely terrified of having an allergic reaction and going into anaphylactic shock! I am afraid of everything, from medication to soaps and perfumes, but especially foods. The crazy thing is, I've never even had an allergic reaction before! Not only am I afraid to eat anything new, but I'm afraid of foods I've eaten a hundred times because I've heard you can suddenly develop new allergies at any time in your life. I think going to an allergist and getting tested would put my mind at ease, but I don't have enough money to go and see one to get tested.

I was wondering if anyone on here could give me some good advice or some real statistics on this. Does anyone know how likely it is to suddenly develop an allergy to foods as an adult? What percentage of people suddenly develop allergic reactions, and out of those that do, how many are severe enough to be life threatening? If anyone else has had the same fear, do you have any suggestions for getting over it? It's ruining my life! I won't go out to eat anymore, and I've restricted my diet to so few foods that I'm losing dangerous amounts of weight. I'm not sure what to do, and I don't know anyone else that has this problem. I feel so alone with this, and I'm just looking for some good advice and someone who understands. I have seen a therapist, but we haven't made any progress on this phobia so far, although she's been a help with some of my other anxiety problems.

 
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:12 PM   #2
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Re: Afraid to Eat! - Phobia of Anaphylaxis

I don't think phobias always find comfort in statistics. I have a few myself that defy logic. I'm sure there are plenty of resources online or in the library that you might access. Based on my (unscientific) knowledge, however, generally allergies occur after a few, limited exposures to a substance or food. They are not likely to occur after hundreds of exposures. I think this is well-documented but I'm sorry I cannot give you specific facts.

Perhaps you might start by re-introducing one food item at a time that you have enjoyed in the past for years without any trouble. These items are likely very safe for you and will help improve your nutrition.

My phobias limit my life socially & professionally but do not impede my health. I hope & pray you will find some comfort & improvement in your situation. Keep us posted.

 
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:14 PM   #3
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Re: Afraid to Eat! - Phobia of Anaphylaxis

I don't think phobias always find comfort in statistics. I have a few myself that defy logic. I'm sure there are plenty of resources online or in the library that you might access. Based on my (unscientific) knowledge, however, generally allergies occur after a few, limited exposures to a substance or food. They are not likely to occur after hundreds of exposures. I think this is well-documented but I'm sorry I cannot give you specific facts.

Perhaps you might start by re-introducing one food item at a time that you have enjoyed in the past for years without any trouble. These items are likely very safe for you and will help improve your nutrition.

My phobias limit my life socially & professionally but do not impede my health. I hope & pray you will find some comfort & improvement in your situation. Keep us posted.

 
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Old 12-29-2012, 06:30 PM   #4
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Re: Afraid to Eat! - Phobia of Anaphylaxis

That's a good idea, and something I've actually been trying the last few days. Today I tried two foods that I haven't eaten in months, and although I feel ok now, I'm still worried about delayed reactions. I know I need to eat a more varied diet, and you're right, if I've eaten them hundreds of times, chances are they should be ok. Thank you so much for your prayers and support. I am working every day to overcome this, and I must keep believing that I will succeed eventually.

 
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Old 09-21-2013, 12:11 PM   #5
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Re: Afraid to Eat! - Phobia of Anaphylaxis

Hi im having the same troubles i wont eat anythink!! Literally nothing im starving myself because im so scared of a reaction ( anaphlyactic ). Ive no known food allergies and never had a reaction to anything but im afraid it will just happen. Ive lost 2 stone in about 6 weeks due to not eating. Everone keeps telling me to just eat and nothing will happen but my anxiety starts wenever i try something my throat feels tight i get a dru tickly cough and i get itchy all signs of a reaction!!im so scared im going to end up really ill but i cant help it!!! Any advice would be grateful x

 
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Old 11-06-2014, 10:38 AM   #6
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Re: Afraid to Eat! - Phobia of Anaphylaxis

I have exactly the same problem. I have found a few "safe" foods that I convinced myself to eat, I had lost weight but once I was down to 128 pounds I knew I at least had to eat enough of my "safe" foods to maintain my weight. I had always enjoyed a variety of foods, but my stress was out of control and there was just too much anxiety to eat anything outside of these "safe" foods. I have been getting counseling for over a year and it is starting to help. I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder. Basically stress got the best of me and we "control what we can", for me I did it by controlling food. I would try to cook other things and the anxiety was too much, just looking at foods other than my "safe" foods and thinking about eating them would cause anxiety so strong and I was afraid I was going to have an allergic reaction. I would shake, I even got hives from the anxiety, my throat would feel dry and I would be tensing my tongue up so bad that I would think it was swelling (by the way, the tongue is a muscle too that will tense up and appear larger, just the same you can relax it). I went to the emergency room twice and they gave me Benadryl and of course that made me relax and all was well. As I have been lowering my stress, which included getting rid of my abusive boyfriend of 10 years. I have never had a very supportive family which is something I am starting to deal with and I am creating my own life, I call it "reinventing myself". As the stress is getting more under control, the anxiety is lessening and I have introduced a few more foods. But during this time of course we investigate ingredients in some of the foods we had been eating, which becomes pretty scary. I have eliminated processed foods and buy foods without preservatives and colors, I do all of my own baking and can my own vegetables so that I don't have to eat pesticides. I am slowly adding a few foods, I still seem to fall back to the "safe foods" as my main foods, but I have gone out with friends a few times now and eaten small amounts in restaurants( I don't even want to know the source of the foods, I just go into denial, lol). I am not sure how long it will take, but at the same time I have become more aware of the sources of what I now choose to eat. Basically I am slowly learning to "guard" what I eat, but not be afraid of it. Good luck and I hope this can help.

Last edited by Amnetti; 11-06-2014 at 10:40 AM. Reason: spelling

 
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allergic reaction, anaphylaxis, anixety, phobia



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