Hi Jill, I hope you are doing well.
I came across this post and found the gagging very relatable. Let me explain my situation.
I started getting anxiety from covid and from the lockdown. I was worried about catching covid because of all the negative information on the media. Along with this, we were stuck in lockdown so there was not much to do but think. My whole routine of working, sports and seeing friends was all changed to just staying at home.
I usually experience situational anxiety, so it goes away when the problem is cleared. With covid, my anxiety came back. At first I had difficulty swallowing my food. Then I started gagging before my meals because I would feel so nauseas. As lockdown was over, my anxiety went away but it came back again due to worries about other things and with that, came the gagging and feeling spaced out.
It has been 6 months now. The gagging seems to come before meals when I am feeling extra stressed, but it goes away as quickly.
It usually happens like this: I feel more spaced out then usual from something stressful, then stress about eating, I feel nauseas and then when I am about to eat, the gagging comes. As silly as it sounds, when I am feeling extra spaced out and nauseas, when I gag I feel better. But I know it's not normal to be relying on that to make the nausea go away. The gagging has only been coming back once a month, but physical symptoms also include spaced out and nauseas before eating due to fears of gagging.
My psych has said that although I'm not even worried about covid anymore, there's just new anxiety surrounding the symptoms itself.
I don't know how to break this chain and was if you or anybody else has any advice for this.