Post nasal drip...trouble swallowing, anyone suffering the same

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Hi everyone,

I’m here desperately searching for some experiences and help...

27, female, I’ve been having an on-and-off chronic rhinitis for a couple of years till now(my family doctor saying it’s caused by allergy but I personally never noticed that I’m allergic to something). I don’t seem to have symptoms such as running nose, itchy eyes, sneezing, coughing...etc, but seems that I have the post nasal drip sensation most of the time, it’s like a lump or a mucus around my throat that I can neither swallow down nor cough out, sometimes good sometimes bad. These are my background.

 Since 4 days ago, right before my period started(don’t know if they are relevent tho) all of a sudden the symptom became very severe. The “mucus thing” seems to be stuck at a very uncomfortable location(right in between of my nasal cavity and my throat) it’s like too much discomfort and you can hardly ignore it...I swallow all the time but it never really go down and even if it does it comes back right after...and my mouth and throat became extremely dry with no saliva at all. This is ruining my life and I haven’t had a proper meal for 4 days...because everytime I tried to swallow I feel the food stuck in between my back throat and my nasal cavity, along with the mucus, and it doesn’t go down smoothly, I even have a feeling that food partially went up to my nose instead of going down. I know this can’t happen and it’s against your body design, but whenever I had this feeling I couldn’t swallow anymore food even like congee. I feel I could choke or something if something stuck in there. I went to my family doc today and he just thinks it’s caused by allergy and he sees irritation in my back throat. He gave me antibiotics and saline nasal spray. I told him I have some trouble swallowing and he ended up giving me Sandoz Ondansetron ODT which is for controlling the nausea and vomiting feeling, but I don’t have those symptoms so really don’t know if that’s gonna do anything......I will go see an ENT for further test maybe using a endoscope to see what’s going on.

By the way, I used Apo-mometasone and Fluticasone furoate nasal sprays in the past month and stopped using them 2 days ago.

It is seriously ruining my life...I loved eating and now I feel so nervous and stressful with eating. I’m hungry but just can’t eat for 3 days. I used to love all those outdoor activities but now I’m just totally in the dark and rather go sleeping because only when I’m asleep I don’t feel anything...what’s going on? Can post nasal drip cause those feelings at all?  Please if anyone ever suffering from similar problem like I do...share it with me if you have any way to get better.

Thank you so much for reading.

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  • Posted

    Hi raven,

    I have all the symptoms you described. My constant rhinitis+ ETD problems started over a year ago and my swallowing problems started about a couple of months ago. ENTs have also told me all these problems are due to allergies and same as you, i have never had allergy symptoms before my rhinitis/post nasal drip started. I also used these over the counter nasal sprays for over a year but recently stopped and replaced them with a natural eucalyptus spray which is much healthier, I recommend you start using this as well instead. 

    I recently went to see a physical therapist because I have always had some sort of tension on the back of my head, to of my neck and constantly felt the need to pop/crack my neck . My posture has also always been really terrible, I used to purposely elevate my chin too much when i was younger because I looked tougher and that habit stucked. The physical therapist told me my neck and jaw were REALLY stiff and tight. To be honest with you though her treatment was not really useful and I saw no actual improvement for neither the swallowing or rhinitis.

    However after looking at online forums on this swallowing problem which is just so annoying, this vietnamese guy found that acupuncture, chinese cupping and gua sha treatment on the back of his neck solved his food up nasal cavity issue when swallowing. I read about this about a couple of months ago and have went to see several acupuncturists. Even though have seen little improvement lmao, I am not loosing hope. (I have seen mostly European acupuncturists maybe that is why) Acupuncture and chinese cupping help blood circulation and considering the fact that I have always had tension and even pain on the back of my neck and used to pop it really often, it seems to me that the problem originates from a nerve, muscle weakness or misplacement in the the back of the neck. I really recommend you go see a acupuncturists and explain the situation we share to them. Acupunture is known for helping alleviate dysphagia, swallowing problems as well.

    It is crazy though how I have exactly thesame issues you described... Please tell me if you also have bad posture, neck issues etc. Because that would mean there is an even higher chance that is the cause of all these problems. I am a very sedentary person i am trying to change that thought and used to suffer from really bad anxiety until a couple of months only.

    I know how it feels to have food up stuck in that nasal cavity area, it is so annoying and it sucks that traditional western medecine seem to offer no solution to it... But we need to be optimistic and I am sure that there is a right acupuncture treatment that can solve at least this swallowing problem. 

     

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    • Posted

      Hi Jose, yes I was always thinking that it could be neck problem because I have very stiff neck and shoulder. I had neck pain because my bad posture, I always lower my head looking at my cellphone. I did some research says that a very minor misplacement on your cervical spine could cause some weird feeling when you swallow. I spoke to my GP about this and he just brushed me off saying there’s no connection between them...but however I took an neck X Ray yesterday and will go pick up the result today. I ruled out acid reflux as well with a gastroscopy.

      I tried everything, I have a Chinese background so I know how those things work. I tried acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine, so far didn’t help too much.

      My GP said it’s just anxiety but this is too much and I can’t be convinced...I’m still waiting for another ENT appointment.

      Questions: 

      - may I ask your age and gender? (If you don’t mind)

      - do you also feel gluey mucus/phelgm stuck between the back of nose/soft palate and the back of throat? (Like post nasal drip)

      - do you have a blocking feeling when you swallow your saliva or drink liquid?

      - do you also feel your throat is dry?

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  • Posted

    Hi raven,

    I am 19 year old guy, yes I have a lot of post nasal drip and my saliva is really thick and gluey in the back of my throat/soft palate area. I get a dry throat really easily whenever I exercise and I feel my voice has changed since the beginning of this swallowing problem. I do not feel a blocking feeling when I drink liquids though.

    My ENT also tells me it is just anxiety and stress, she first thought it was silent reflux but i also got a gastroscopy done and nothing was wrong. 

    Have you seen a chiropractor? Also to add on what you just said i also read on a forum concerning this swallowing issue that this might be due to a misplacement of the c4 vertebra in the neck. I will probably go see a chiropractor so he can check my c4 vertebra, which is probably what I was f*****g up when I kept popping my neck all the time.

    It would be so nice of you if you keep me updated on the x ray and on any treatment you find or rule out.. I will make sure to do the same. 

     

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    • Posted

      If you are a male than hormonal change may not be a big issue.  But you are very young so I’m not too sure.

      No I haven’t seen a chiropractor. My neck is painful when I tilt my head backwards, and also it makes popping sound. From what i’ve read, yes C3/C4 vertebras minor misplacement can cause swallowing issue or a lump in throat sensation. However mine is not around my Adam’s apple but it’s way upper, and it feels more like gluey mucus rather than a lump. I guess it’s the place where the mucus is located gives us a sensation of food sticking at the back of nasal cavity. Eating became the most stressful thing to me now and my appetite went completely away, which resulted in me dropping weight so rapidly. I’m very nervous when I’m eating and paying too much attention in my swallowing, which makes it worse...man my life is totally f***ed up ever since, withdrawn from so many activities. But I’m not giving up on this until I find an answer and get some relief.

      My nostril is very dry and I never have runny nose...I wash always wondering how come the post nasal drip happens even though I don’t have excessive nasal mucus. But maybe just because my nostril is too dry, so the mucus became more sticky and cannot come out of my nose, and as a result, it builds up at the back instead...I really don’t know.

      Do you also have dry nose?

      I’m going to pick up the neck X-ray now and will update you later!

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    • Posted

      Hi there, so my X Ray result says there’s no dislocation for my vertebrae’s, no arthropathy or anything...which means I can rule out the possibility that it’s caused by the neck problem. And the doctor kept saying that it’s nearly impossible that vertebrae issues can cause the feeling of mucus/phelgm, difficulty swallowing or sinus problem. You can still get it checked just for reassurance. But very likely you will be the same as me. The neck popping sound is normal, doesn’t mean there’s something wrong, and neck pain is probably just from the hypertension of our muscle.

      So I really don’t know what to do next and what else can be tested...I’ll be waiting for a different ENT appointment for another visit. The only thing I haven’t done yet is the CT scan for my sinus, which I really don’t know if really gonna show anything different, since I already did an endoscopy weeks ago and found nothing...I believe you have done that with your ENT doc as well? And you also did the gastroscopy that shows nothing wrong with your esophagus.

      If all possibilities have been ruled out, maybe time to focus on anxiety/nerve issue. 

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  • Posted

    Hi raven,

    The post nasal drip happens because the mucous/phlegm builds up in the eustachian tube, you clearly have a Eustachian tube dysfunction as i do as well. Do you feel that some of parts of your body are kind of numb and do you have some minor balance problems? That is caused by liquid build up in the eustachian tubes that also causes post nasal drip and causes a whole ton of other things... I really recommend you get a eucalyptus nasal spray, thanks to it my nose is not so dry anymore and my post nasal drip is kind of getting better.

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    • Posted

      Yes keep me posted about the chiropractor visit.

      And what you mentioned might be a good point. ). Hmmm I never have thought that eustachian tube problem can cause post nasal drip sensation. Maybe that’s the reason why that the mucus is stuck at the upper area instead of down in the throat?  I would definitely bring this idea to the ENT doctor for my next visit. 

      My right ear sometimes makes strange noise like “bang bang bang”(not pulsatile tinnitus), especially after I belch or burp. I didn’t notice if I had any numb or body balance issue. But when i drive on the highway, like when I speed up, I always feel that my ears are blocked, and no matter how much I swallow my saliva it doesn’t help(didn’t used to be that bad). And sometimes after I yawn, I just can’t hear the sound of me swallowing my saliva anymore, and it goes back to normal after like 10 sec. Are those symptoms sound related to Eustachian tube dysfunction? 

      My mucus is in white clear colour. So your ENT doctor told you that the mucus/phlegm was built up in the Eustachian tube instead of the sinus? How do you test if you have Eustachian tube dysfunction?

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    • Posted

      Hi raven, 

      I just started my chiropractic treatment today and my chiropractor said she will try to help me and she will talk with her collegues about our condition to see if she can further help me. She said my cervical spine is really tense and that i will need several session for that to change. I have not done an x ray or anything yet however. i really recommend you try going to a chiropractor as well. She explained to me that bad posture anxiety etc can damage the nervous system with the spine, and this can lead to increased health issues.

      I am not sure if what you have is ETD (eustachain tube dysfunction) or just the food creating pressure in your nasal passages. I would really recommend you go see an ENT to see if you have ETD my ENT used an optic fibre see put up my nasal passages to diagnose it. 

      I am really hoping the chiropractor helps.. also by guessing you live in the US or canada i really recommend you visit an "upper cervical" chiropractor. Here in europe we don't have them sadly.. but apparently they are of great help for the swallowing and ETD issue.

      Sorry for the late reply by the way i've been pretty busy. What specialists have you seen recently?

       

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    • Posted

      Also i am considering getting my blood checked soon, just in case i have a thryoid or hormonal problem. Apparently thyroid problems can cause nasal regurgitation as well. Have you gotten your thyroid function tested recently?
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  • Posted

    Yes I have done the CT scan with my ENT and nothing wrong appeard...

    As for the doctor saying that vertebra issues can't cause these problems I would'nt trust GPs and ENTs so much since all these problems, ENT etc are really recent and didn't occur really often in the past since before people were less sedentary and nowadays with technology and office jobs it much more common for people to have bad posture, anxiety etc. All of this is really new to the field of medecine, so there is not much research on the connections between all these things. Personally, I have found that ENTs are of absolutely no help at all, and by reading online most people have found the same but i do not really blame them again since these problems are new to the field of medecine.

    The post nasal drip(which causes the phlegm), the swallowing problems etc, I am conviced these issues are  due to muscle, nerve weaknesses caused by both bad posture and anxiety combined. Now the thing is I dont know how it is possible to diagnose/find the specific weak nerves or muscles. It might be probably useful to visit a cranial osteopath but there seems to be none in my city...

    I will be visiting a chiropractor just in case and will tell you what he thinks on our issues.

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  • Posted

    I am both glad I found this post but also sad that others are experiencing the same thing I am. I have always had sinus infections and post nasal drip. I recently had a balloon simulcast procedure that opened up my sinus cavities just a few months ago. Recently i have had episodes of not being able to swallow. Fearing I would choke. I had a “swallowing test” that they do with a live X-ray as I am swallowing food and they said nothing wrong there. I have noticed that I have these swallowing episodes when the mucus is thicker.  I have a follow up appointment with my ENT who did my procedure to let him know about my issues. I too used to love eating and now I have even more anxiety and don’t look forward to meal time ESPECIALLY out in public sad

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  • Posted

    Hi raven, 

    I think i have found the solution to our swallowing problem, a speech pathologist specialized in swallowing/ ENT issues. Luckily there is one here in my city. I have had one appointment with her and she diagnosed me and is going to start giving me exercises to reeducate my tongue and enable me to swallow properly. I have relatives in Toronto Canada and apparently there is a really good ENT- speech pathology clinic there called "the voice clinic" that are experts in all these swallowing issues, which would probably be the ideal place to solve our swallowing issue. Have you found any other relief or solution to this swallowing issue? I hope this information helps you, wish you the best.

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  • Posted

    Hey there is HOPE! New Treatment! Clarifix.

    I've had this for over 3 years. been ruining my life. been tested for everything. I too thought I can't do it anymore.

    my new ENT said I have Chronic Non Allergic Rhinitis or Vasomotor rhinitis The FDA just approved a treatment for it. http:// clarifix. com. take out spaces.

    Basically the nerves in my nose are too sensitive and act like it is an allergy or infection.

    this new treatment basically kills the nerve that sends the message to keep producing the mucus. I am so happy, after another CT scan she is going to give me the Treatment. Clarifix, out patient, they numb your nose and basically freeze the nerve. she said it will give me horrible brain freeze nut only for a few minutes. the whole thing only takes an hour.

    I am so hopeful. so many of us suffering, I have not been able to work, go to the movies, sleep well. basically no life at all.

    I have PTSD and take anxiety and antidepressants and have hypothyroidism. all of these could have caused the problems no one will no for sure. but once that nerve goes nuts it doesn't matter.

    I have no zero affiliation with this company I've been searching for over 3 years. I hope to have mine done in April 2019 May at the latest. don't give up.

    best wishes to us all. tell the other message boards, this is a new treatment

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