Sjogren’s Syndrome has been causing me more trouble lately. My eyes have been dry for years. But, my mouth is now getting noticeably dryer. I’m needing water twice with every bite of food. Without all the extra water, I can’t get the food down my throat. And I need more water to try and swallow. My throat is getting dry, too.
Having heartburn, reflux, and dry mouth is something I knew about. I have them all, but now I’m seeing that Sjogren’s patients can also suffer from problems, such as Esophagitis. The esophagus can actually be damaged by inflammation. I hope that’s not happening.
I feel a lump in my throat often and food feels like it’s stuck when I’m eating a meal. Dryness from Sjogren’s can be all over the body. There was already an awareness that it can cause severely dry skin. I have that. Dry flakes of skin are all over, even though I moisturize daily. The skin on some of my fingers is so very cracked. I have open tears in the skin and it’s so painful.
I can’t seem to get past the cracking skin on my fingers. Nothing seems to help, and the cracks don’t fully heal before they crack open in a new spot. Sjogren’s can cause many types of pain.
My joint pain is a symptom of Sjogren’s, because many of us have arthritis. I haven’t been able to sleep much this week. My shoulder pain and arthritis pain have been so bad that I can’t sleep. If I don’t take 3 or 4 Ibuprofen before bed, I’ll wake up in the middle of the night…..painsomnia.
I know it’s time to see my Rheumatologist, but I’ve hesitated to go in person to get the blood work. With the worsening of my symptoms, my Sjogren’s may be attacking my body in a new way or going after one of my organs. This is the time when it is really important to see the doctor about adding something else to my treatment.
Plaquenil has never made any change in my symptoms. Low Dose Naltrexone has been a life-saver! It has given me tons of energy when I had none left. But, having energy doesn’t protect my body from an immune system gone wrong. I’ll need to get brave and wear my mask and shield and see the rheumie. It’s time.
@2020, copyright Lisa Ehrman
Disclaimer: I’m not a medical expert. This post contains my opinions only, and is not meant to be taken as medical advice. If you have a medical concern, please consult your personal physician.