Author Topic: Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth  (Read 207 times)

Alan

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Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth
« on: December 30, 2019, 10:19:00 AM »
I have learned that two of my friends that had very stressful events in their life, developed dry mouth and other symptoms (including headache, and one had dry eyes too).  After they resolved the event that caused their stress, the dry mouth and other symptoms eventually went away.  Their symptoms lasted for months.

I know that I have had a lot of stress over the last couple of years, and had very intermittent dry mouth over the last two years.  In May, the dry mouth became permanent. On that day, coincidentally, I had a stressful event happen.  The dry mouth initially was only at night, but progressed getting worse slowly, until October when I developed a continuous headache in the temporal area (with pressure points in the temple that hurt to the touch).  The exact day the headache started, my dry mouth got much worse. The dry mouth affected me in the day as well on this October day.  My stress levels around late Sept to Oct increased as I several bad events related to my finances and business happen in this time period.  In mid December I developed  mild dry eyes too.

I am trying to determine whether my symptoms are related, and whether they were stress/anxiety induced, like that of my friends. 

I saw a Rheumatologist twice, and she said she did not think I had Sjogrens or Giant Cell Arteritis, as I tested negative with low inflammatory markers, and don't have other signs, like joint pains. 

Hard to pinpoint what is causing this.  But the continuous headache (now 60 days running) is troubling.  The dry mouth is very uncomfortable, taking Evoxac to help some.

Anyone else hear of stress causing dry mouth, dry eyes, and headache?



 

irish

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Re: Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2019, 12:38:01 PM »
I'm sorry to hear that you are having these issues. I am wondering if you might be benefitted by seeing a neurologist. There are many headaches and other symptoms that can be sorted out by a neurologist. Also, neurologists treat headaches that are chronic. Sounds like some control for the headaches would be in order.

It is true that anxiety and stress can cause so many issues. It is also true that many times it takes months and sometimes years to sort these things out. In the meantime it seems that some doc should be considering treating for you to make you more comfortable. Ask around and see if you can find a neurologist who is good. Many docs are not willing to treat patients the first time around for complaints.

I would not mention autoimmune until after the doctor has examined you. Manay of the docs don't like to have patients make suggestions. I think we should be able to make suggestions but I try to keep it later after they have formed an opinion. I find it interesting that you have been thinking about Sjogrens. There are other diseases besides Sjogrens that can cause dryness and neuropathy is often involved.Keep us updated on your results if you have time. Thanks. Irish

Alan

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Re: Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2019, 02:45:15 PM »
Thanks Irish.  I did see two neurologists.  The first one thought I might have Pre-Trigeminal Neuralgia or another type, but he was only guessing. The other was clueless.  Tests did not show up anything.

When I thought I had Giant Cell Arteritis (an auto-immune disease), I went on prednesone 60mg as a precaution.  It did not resolve my symptoms until I was at something like 80-120mg, which I tried on two days.  But I decided to get off the prednesone (as my docs don't think I have this now) and have tapered off from 2 weeks at 60mg, 2 weeks at 40mg, 2 weeks at 20mg, 10 days at 10mg, and yesterday I stopped completely.

The strange thing is that as I tapered off prednesone, the dry mouth seemed to get worse.  This morning 48 hours after last dose, my dry mouth was worse, with a dry throat (which I did not experience before).  So it appears that prednesone is helping the dry mouth, although at 60mg, I still had it bad, but now its worse.

It could be that my adrenal glands have not kicked in yet, which I read gives you some natural steriods. 

Anyhow, need to turn my situation around, so my mental state is positive, and see if that gets rid of these symptoms.  Otherwise I will continue to suffer without a clear diagnosis.

I have to believe the dry mouth and headache is related in some way....

irish

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Re: Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2019, 12:29:09 AM »
Are you in the medical field??? I just wonder as you talk about the adrenal glands and cortisone. I am an old retired nurse and I will tell you that cortisone doesn't cure all ills and it can do bad things to you especially at the dosages you speak of. I have seen people go completely psychotic on 100 mgm of cortisone a day. I mean raving, wild, mentally gone and off to the psych ward for long, long time. It can affect your white count, blood pressure, bleeding and clotting time, elevated blood sugars and frequently yeast infections. It can also mask other health issues with serious consequences at those dosages.

Also, I just want to tell you that being impatient and wanting to find a diagnosis runs in the autoimmune family. All of us on this site have been there. There are very few people who get a quick diagnosis. By quick I mean within 3-5 years. I had been having health problems since age 21 and doctored.....a lot!! At the age of 60 I was diagnosed with Bullous Pemphigoid and it took 2 more years to get diagnosed with Sjogrens. Then 3 years later I was sent to a immunologist after having Mycobacterium kansasii and being treated for one year on 3 different antibiotics 8 times a day.

I was diagnosed by immunology with Myasthenia gravis, Hashimotos and severely low t-cells and also low IgG levels. I was put on IVIG in 2006 and get it once a month for the Myasthenia. I just started my 14th year on the IVIG and it has done nothing to help my Sjogrens but it did help my low white cells and I have way less infections. I am not telling this to scare you but to prepare yourself for a long siege. Or, you might be lucky and find the right doctor in the right place at the right time.

Be aware that blood work is fickle and can take a long time to turn positive and then after turning positive it can convert to negative again. This doesn't mean you are healed. Just means that it is negative and you just keep up with whatever treatment you think helped. Sometimes Mother Nature will help it turn negative and for that people are happy. Then, on the other side of this issue is the fact that sometimes people have symptoms with positive blood work and then again there are those who can have positive blood work for a long time and never develop symptoms. This is where the word fickle comes in. Can't out guess the stuff.

Have you seen a good Ear Nose and Throat doc?? The headache could also be related to infections in the sinuses....and there are a whole lot of bacteria and fungi out there to cause these. Sinus issues can cause a dry mouth at times. I would advise you to avoid steroids if you can as you will truly screw up your blood work and scans, etc. You were on the steroids long enough to have sort of a "hang over" effect so you will need to tell any doc that you see that you took it to avoid faulty testing of any kind.

I am not trying to be overly aggressive but just want the best for you. I am curious as to why you are sure that you have an autoimmune disease. Right now if it was me I would think first of a brain tumor with that long term headache. If it was me I would find a good primary who can help sort symptoms out and help plan specialists and testing that would be the most productive. I would address the headache first so that you get some relief from that. There have got to be headache specialists out there cause there are specialists all over the place these days it just takes the right people to send you to them.

I  hope that you can get some doctors who can figure the headache out so you can rest at least. Keep us posted on what you find out.  We have a lot of people here with a lot of ailments and it is a good place to pick up knowledge. Use the search option and you can find a lot of info. Good luck. Irish

irish

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Re: Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2019, 12:49:11 AM »
Alan, I read your last post over again and something struck me. You had 2 neurologists who did nothing for you. After chasing diagnosis for all those years I became educated in at least trying to not put up with doctors who seem to avoid tough situations. I have come to the conclusion that at least a doctor could ask a person how much they are suffering and are they willing to put up with more. Reason being, maybe they could refer you to another specialist. I get sick and tired of doctors who don't seem to feel guilty when they offer "nothing" to a patient. Have to tell you....don't take offense people........my hubby told one really smart alec doctor at a big medical facility that doctors were the only vocation where a person could get paid for doing nothing. He told him that car mechanics who don't find anything wrong with your car won't charge. Boy, was that doc mad. So were we as he as one mouthy disrespectful dude.

Just a thought. Irish

Alan

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Re: Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2019, 03:30:05 PM »
Hi Irish, I had an MRI and no tumor showed up.  I am not convinced I have auto-immune, but it was in the running.  Both of my inflammatory markers are extremely low.  ESR around 2, C-reative Protein around .60, although I will say that I take Curcumin and Fish Oil in larger amounts, so that could depress the markers some.

I think its possible that my dry mouth, and continuous headache are stress/anxiety related.  Since two of my friends had similar but not identical symptoms, and they got rid of the symptoms when they resolved the stress.  And those on this board should rule out stress, anxiety and depression, especially for dry mouth. 

I will see an ENT on Monday.  Will have her check out the Sinuses.  I am not a doctor, but learn very quickly anything that ails me.

Had acupuncture today, and I have to say it calmed me, and maybe damped down some of the pain. 

Thank Goodness for xylimelts, spry xlitol mints, and EVOXAC, as this is allowing me to survive the dry mouth. 

If I did not mention it, the Headache has an intermittent tingling/burning on the face (forehead and down to cheeks).  But very hot showers and caffeine seem to damp it down.  The day I got the headache, the dry mouth got much worse.

I did not feel much when on Prednesone, was not hungry or gain weight, no change in personality, no extra energy. Only noticed the dry mouth getting worse as I went off it.  Is that an indication of something?  When I got a shot of Prednesone initially at the hospital, my dry mouth went away. But was it the prednesone or the saline drip?  My headache did not get better with that shot which was strange. 

irish

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Re: Stress/Anxiety and Dry Mouth
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2020, 11:07:40 PM »
I don't know where you live but many people find that running a humidifier in the winter helps. Our air gets dry with either heat running or hot outside or A/C running.Do you smoke cause that can cause dry mouth as can some supplements from OTC.

I am wondering how often you are getting cortisone shots. When you are not diagnosed most docs will not give steroids as it masks symptoms. Also, with the nerve issues in your face it may be that you need to find a neurologist or clinic specializing in pain from nerves. Also, people have been known to have some facial nerve pain from a bad tooth. Another option would be to just wait this out and see if any thing improves or gets worse.

A lot of us with chronic disease will be so burnt out and frustrated from going to the doctor that we will just hunker down and take a fairly long rest before making anymore appointments. It is really easy to do overkill when trying for diagnosis. It took me from 1964 to 2003 to get a diagnosis(then I got 1 and 3 more in 2006) and I didn't go to the doctor all the time. Getting a diagnosis doesn't always come easy. Sorry I don't have any brilliant idea up my sleeve. Please keep us updated. Irish