Sick son

Hi all, I'm looking for some answers. I have a 15 year old son who is constantly sick for about a year and a half but almost constantly for the past year. He is now depressed and anxious and on Prozac since August which has helped with his depression. But he continues to be sick all the time. He also sleeps very poorly since about 3 years. He has gone through various tests, including gastric tests to determine why he vomits so frequently. All the tests came back fine. Can his immune system be suppressed due to depression? Is the lack of sleep the cause? What can I do to improve his immune system? He takes vitamin D, E, fish oil, and probiotics. I am so worried this will never end.

19 Replies

  • Sounds a worrying story. Often there are multiple factors involved and social factors will be aggravated by his illness.

    Hopefully you can get access to psychological help

  • He sees a therapist and a psychiatrist for his mental issues. They are stumped by the fact that he always gets sick.

  • It sounds like you are already in touch with the right people.

    I can't readily see a way forwards.

  • Hi there Kc645

    Welcome to our friendly Forum here on Action on Depression, we're very happy that you've found us. Please do read our Community Guidelines while you await replies. Thank you.


  • Thank you. I just read them.

  • Don't be surprised if the Dr finds out the illness is caused by the stress of his condition. Often when I was young I had bouts of gastroenteritis from stress, both good & bad. It was like having the stomach flu. Today I still have trouble with IBS.

  • Thank you. They were looking for IBS but have diagnosed him with stomach migraines because they can't find anything wrong with him. I am hoping he grows out of the illness piece but I'm trying to figure out how to get him through high school successfully when he misses so much school.

  • I'm sorry to hear all of this. I am 17 and suffer from all levels of anxiety and depression. I find that I am always the one to get sick in my family as well. I am currently sick right now (dizzy, nauseous, on/off fever, sore throat, congested, etc.) And when I do get sick it always lasts for at least a week. My mom always said that I just have a weaker immune system but I do wonder if it is possibly linked to my anxiety and not getting enough sleep.

  • Thank you for your response. I'm so sorry to hear you are suffering, too. When my son gets sick, it usually last 2-3 weeks nowadays and he seems to be sick st least once a month. How do you manage to keep up with your school work? That just adds to my son's stress level.

  • Do you have any suggestions on how to get better sleep? I think this is a big piece of the puzzle.

  • Hi nice to meet you and welcome to the site. My eldest sister has for many years suffered from extreme anxiety. It got so bad she couldn't eat a normal diet and lived on mars bars, bran flakes, ice cream and build up drinks. If she tried she would bring them back up. So maybe it is the anxiety which is causing this. Is he on any meds for anxiety as well as depression? x

  • Thank you for your response. My son has been living off Boost drinks the past year which is not ideal but he has no appetite. They currently have him only on Prozac which helps with both his depression and anxiety. However, when he gets really sick, his anxiety flared up. Yesterday was extremely bad for him.

  • The doctor should be able to give him another med which is especially for anxiety as well as Prozac. Prozac alone doesn't see to be doing the job.

    I know diazepam can be taken as and when needed so maybe ask for that? x

  • I will ask his psych dr.

  • And what a lovely community!!

  • hi Kc645. not long ago I read an article on the BBC news that a study on vitamin pills have found that they can do more harm then good.

    unless your son has a specific problem and has been put on them by doctor I would deffenately stop giving them to him as they could be affecting him.

    simple blood tests will find out if your son has a problem with his immune system. and if he has can tell you why..

    I very much doubt a weak immune system would be the course of he's vomiting though. my opinion is that a weak immune system would leave you more open to catching colds. flues and infections

    try changing some of the food that he's eating....i think it's what I would do.

    lastly. we get all the vitamins we need from what we eat and that is by far the best way to get them....

    and don't forget some foods actually help us sleep and some could be doing the opposite.

    good luck and hope you find some answers...

  • Thank you. We are going to change his diet, cutting out dairy, wheat and sugar. Hopefully this will bring about some positive results.

  • We cut out his multi vitamin because we thought this might add to the problem. However, he's been on boost for about 10 months which has a bunch of synthetic vitamins in it. I just thought of that fact that these vitamins might be a problem the other day.

  • i know that it's hartbreaking to see your children suffer so I really hope that you find something soon that will help him...and help you too.

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