Q and A


Can I change the time that I take my meds?

Hi, I have been taking arvs for now 5 years, I take efavirenz /lamivudine /tenofovir. I have been taking my medication at 10:00pm, is it possible for me to change to morning hours coz I don’t get enough sleep. I used to work at night when I had started taking my medication but I have noticed that I fail to sleep nowadays even when I quit my night job. The best I can sleep is just 2 hours.


Thanks for getting in touch.

If you aren’t able to sleep, it may be worth talking to a doctor about this. They should be able to give you something to help, or suggest yoga or meditation.

Though medication that contains efavirenz is recommended to be taken at night, you should take your medication at a time that suites you and your lifestyle. If this means changing from night to day, then yes this is something that you can do.  If however you notice any changes, you may want to talk to your doctor.

There is a possibility that is may be the medication that’s causing your sleep problems, so you could mention this to your HIV doctor. They may suggest changing to something else.

Good luck with addressing the sleep issue.


  1. Roy Trevelion

    Hi Annonimous,

    It’s good that you’ve started on HIV treatment (ART). What meds are you taking? Sometimes people change the time they take their meds because they are doing shift work. Is that why you’re asking?

    Some HIV meds, such as Atripla, are taken before bedtime because any side effects can happen when you’re asleep and not at work.

    Please let us know what meds you’re taking and what the work problem is.

  2. Annonimous

    Is it gud for me to change tym of taking my pills bcoz of work problem,im new in this i only hv 5days

  3. Roy Trevelion

    Hi Anonymous,

    It’s great that you’ve started HIV treatment because it can be good for your health and your baby’s health. But what pill are you taking? If it’s a version of Atripla, such as Tribuss or Odimume, it’s recommmended to take it before bedtime. This makes any side effects happen when you are asleep. But as you work shifts it’s a good idea to ask the doctor if there’s another pill you can take at any time of day.

    Here’s the i-Base guide to HIV, pregnancy and women’s health.

  4. Anonymous

    I’m newly diagnosed with HIV and I work 7 nights in 7 nights off how do I work around the time to take the pill…. it’s a combined pill and I’m pregnant

  5. Roy Trevelion

    Hi Boitumelo,
    Yes, you can change the time like this. Change once and then stick to the new time. If you are changing work shifts regularly you can ask the doctor about switching to meds you can take at any time of day.

  6. Boitumelo

    Hi Lisa
    Am Starting night duty next month and am drinking my. Pills at 20h30,,,is it possible to start next month to drink at 9h00 when I get home,,changing times…Thnx in advance


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