appetite increase

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by crazymama30, Jun 12, 2009.

  1. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Ever since increasing difficult child's abilify to 4mg (yes a small dose) his appetite has doubled, even tripled. Now this is the kiddo that I had to force to eat dinner, and many times he would skip lunch. He would eat a sandwich only for dinner. But now, look out. He eats lunch, dinner and a bedtime snack. husband and the kids were over at a bbq at a friends house for dinner tonight. difficult child ate between 4 and 8 hotdogs, and then proceeded to throw up 3 times! No one really knows how much he ate, husband was in his own world and thought he ate 4, easy child said he ate 6, and difficult child said he ate 8. So who knows. I am a little upset that husband was not paying attention and did not realize what was going to happen. This will even out won't it? It won't keep increasing I hope?
  2. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    Hotdogs can be hard on a stomach that is not use to so much! Even so, throwing up 3 times seems a lot. Would he have eaten anything else to add to this? I hope he is feeling better.

    I don't know anything about Abilify but I do hope his appetite settles down a little bit. Maybe in the mean time try to push lots of fruit and veggies and other healthy low calorie foods to hopefully fill up on those good foods before dwelving into snacky foods?

    Good luck!
  3. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    All the atypical antipsychotics carry a side effect of increased appetite that sometimes does not settle down with time. Since your difficult child's response to the increased dose seems extreme, it might be worth checking in with the psychiatrist early next week.
  4. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    difficult child 1 took Abilify for about 5 mos. and gained over 25 careful!

  5. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    The Daytrana no doubt affected his appetite before. You may be seeing a surge because the Abilify increased his appetite and his body is trying to make up for the lack of calories he's been taking in. Most boys that age go through growth spurts and DO eat a lot. I'd just watch him for a few weeks to see if it doesn't level out. If you make sure he's eating healthy and not a lot of junk food (not always easy), and he gets regular exercise, it probably won't be a problem. When difficult child 2 was on Abilify and a stimulant, they sort of balanced eachother out with regard to his appetite and he ate like a typical kid.
  6. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    This isn't a "kid thing", either. I'm pushing fifty and between the Zyprexa I was on and the Seroquel I am now on; I've put on better than fifty pounds.

    There's two issues with this, one is that the medications block the satiety signals the GI tract would normally send to the brain.

    The other is that these medications quite commonly cause a craving for refined carbohydrates.

    Healthy eating and exercise is about all you can do. I'm past the days of raging for food (by a long shot), but I sure make an effort not to have junk in the house
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    All of the atypical antipsychotics have weight gain as a side effect. Geodon is what we switched Wiz to when the risperdal stopped working as well. Geodon is supposed to be less of an appetite magnifier.

    Part of the problem is that you actually feel hungrier, and if you don't eat you can have pretty severe hunger pangs. I was on one of the atypical antipsychotics while I was in the hospital last Sept. Shots of it every 4 hours. I had gone cold turkey on the lyrica by having a major migraine and not keeping anything down. The hospital misdx'd the problem as meth OD!!! In reality it was a false positive on the test and a doctor who wouldn't listen to anyone.

    Anywho, for about a week after I got out of the hospital my stomach actually would cramp if I went too long with-o eating. It really opened my mind up about how bad a side effect it is. The cramps would double me over.

    If you can keep lots of fresh fruit (or canned in juice or the big bags of frozen mixed fruit from Sam's) and fresh veggies it can really help this. If he will eat lettuce you can get a lot of crunch and the volume of the food can be huge without having much of a calorie impact. And the spray pump bottles of salad dressing are great for adding that punch of flavor while not adding tons of calories.

    If he will eat popcorn that is a good snack also. Instead of the bags of microwave popcorn with their fat and sodium and artificial stuff we bought a Presto microwave popcorn maker. It is a special bowl that a paper tray sits in the bottom of it. You put one third cup popcorn in it, nuke for about 3 minutes and it is awesome. You can control the fat and sodium intake also.

    thank you has been operating this on his own for about 2 years now. I find it to be incredibly cheaper than the microwave popcorn bags. You do have to periodically change the paper cup thingy, but it is like every 20 batches of popcorn. And 8 filters are under $2 ordered from Presto. I just got 8 packs of 8 cups each and WITH fast shipping it was under $20.

    Here is a link to the popcorn thing:

    It shows several items - the actual popper is the same, at least the top 2 items listed are. And the paper cup thingys are cheaper ordered from Presto.

    I hope this gives some ideas for making healthy snacks available. Because the increased hunger can get to be painful if you don't have something to put in your tummy. Always have something in the car or your purse or whatever so if you are out and hunger hits then your kiddo isn't in pain.

    Sorry if I seem to push the hunger pain, but it truly and honestly SHOCKED me how I felt during the time those medications were in my system. I hate knowing that I brushed Wiz off at times about this when he was on these medications.
  8. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    I did e-mail psychiatrist, and will watch him. He has never eaten like a normal kid, due to the stims, so I don't know really what he should eat like. I know that amount of hot dogs is way abnormal, but that is the first I have seen of anything that extreme. He is a skinny little guy, you can see most of his ribs and he is scrawny. He is not quite as active as he was, but he never stopped before. He still goes out and jumps on the tramoline and shoots hoops.

    He actually has been eating more fruit, because I make him get his own snacks and fruit is easy. He likes apples, bananas, melon. He cannot stand lettuce. He calls all lettuce salad, and hates it.

    I like the popcorn maker idea. That would be way cheaper than micro popcorn, and I bet my difficult child would like the novelty of it. Thanks for that hint. I had never seen that before.

    Wow. We will wait and see.
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    The Popcorn thing I recommended goes into the microwave. It isn't the kind you plug into the wall.

    They say it can be used with oil, but the cup thingys don't last as long. It also makes an icky mess.

    It still has that regular "not hot air popped" taste and texture.

    And it is AMAZINGLY cheaper than the bags. You can get Orville Redenbacher bottles of popcorn for $2-$3 or some stores have bags of unpopped popcorn that are about $1 for the same amount. Either way it cuts the costs way down.

    We got our first popper like this over 7 years ago. That one eventually succumbed to repeated use and got a crack. But I have had our current one for 3 years, it is used at least 2 times a week, if not more, and it shows no signs of any problem.

    I especially like that there is no hot air blowing out to potentially burn children, and no cup of butter melting on the top to burn you when you try to get it off the popper and pour it on the popcorn.
  10. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Did you know that you can also take a plain brown-paper lunch bag, put unpopped kernels in it, fold the top over and microwave it until you have popcorn? Time will vary depending on your microwave's strength and amount of kernels.
  11. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Yes we battle with this. :(
    All of the AP's have been a nightmare for us.

    We are having to limit calories and portions, we are trying to not have to add another medication to help with weight.

    We have always eaten healthy but it hasn't helped.
    So now we are having to limit portions.
    I am trying to make sure K gets her 3 meals a day and then 2 snacks.

    We are doing all healthy low fat low sugar etc. Veggies, fruits, nuts (no salt etc) cheese. I will put the amount she can have on a little plate for her snack and that is it.

    I am trying to teach her about listening to her body, not to eat out of boredom or because she is eating to fast and not realizing that she may be full.

    It is not a lot of fun and it makes me very sad to have to do this.
    But she doesn't like the way she looks, so someone has to help her and do it with her.

    Everything we have tried so far has not worked and this is where we are at now.
    This is with exercise on top of it.

    I hope the AP's slow down for your difficult child.
    K is only on 5mg of Abilify.
  12. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    difficult child is always hungry. I believe it is at least partly due to the medications. In addition he uses food for comfort, we try to talk to him about healthy eating and don't have a ton of bad stuff in the house but we do have some.

    In the past I haven't battled much over food because difficult child has gotten violent over food.

    I wish I had some answers but don't. My difficult child doesn't like that he has gained so much weight but is unwilling to cut down on food. We are hoping he will start working out at the health club and that it will help.