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Hiya! After feeling like I'm getting no where, I've decided to join this forum to help me. I've read some of the stuff on here before and it's so lovely and informative and everyone seems to be really helpful, polite and friendly. Considering this, I have decided to join.
Who Am I?
Hiya! My name is Ieuan. I'm from Wales in the UK, I'm sixteen years of age and I'm a boy.
Why Am I Here?
I am here because I need some desperate help, advice, a shoulder to cry on about my ongoing health problem that is driving me around the absolute bend!
What is This Health Problem?
I am awfully convinced that the health problem I am being plagued with is silent acid reflux.
I will try and be as concise as possible but I'm known to be vague or waffly, so please excuse me for that.
When I was very young, I used to struggle with asthma, which would always result to a chest infection whenever I caught a cold; this was usually in the form of bronchiolitis. This would usually come across me in the cold and flu season and plague me for the entireity. I also suffered with being sick every morning, bringing up a lot of phlegm and choking on this, which would cause me to yeck and be sick a lot.
After I reached the age of around seven, these previous health issues that plauged me faded away. Sadly, though, at the age of ten, this one symptom resurfaced: being sick every morning. This was happening around halfway through Year 6, though I have always struggled with very plaugesome anxiety throughout my life. I'm extremely squeamish; can't take my own pulse type of squeamish, so developed insane anxiety towards learning Biology in school. It developed so much that it became a phobia. I was getting nightmares, was unable to sleep at night, refused to go to school, constantly worried about it even though it was the Summer Holidays and I had three weeks until I had to go back and learn that dreadful subject. It became a real phobia for me. Crying, running out of the classroom, looking physically ill because of it. I was in a right state! I'm no stranger to anxiety, so my Mum was convinced it was that, which I thought was the case too.
This being sick in the mornings got worse and worse. It was no longer just the mornings - it had spread to happening until the early hours of the afternoon... This went on and progressively got worse when I moved up to Year 7. New school, big place, new people; my nightmare. Understandably, my being sick in the mornings got worse. Mum and professionals at this time (doctors and my pediatrition) were absolutely convinced it was anxiety. Anxiety, anxiety, anxiety.
Just a quick lot of information to help: I've been bullied since Year 3 and this stopped at Year 11. From Years 5 through 9, the bullying for me was at its worst. I also had my sexuality, gender identity and individuality to contend with. I came out as gay at the age of thirteen and came out about my gender identity the year just gone (it's a very confusing concept, so will leave that be). I also have Asperger's Syndrome, being diagnosed in around the late days of Year 8. I think that's an adequate brief...
Back to story: This being sick in the mornings and early afternoon worsened even further. I was starting to be sick around every twenty minutes. Any physical movement seemed to trigger it and it made me feel extremely light headed and disorientated. A good half an hour later, reassurance and a cup of water and a long rest, my teaching assistant would make me try again, only for me to be sick again until I got up to my class, sat down and it faded. This was an extremely frequent occurrence, which paid me way more trips to the school nurse more than physically going to lessons, so this was a big problem. (Starting in mid Year 8, I was also starting to suffer from my voice being very sore and tired each day, which affected my singing all the time, so I gave up in mid Year Nine).
After a long time of everyone and myself assuming it was all anxiety, it faded, all by itself, after I had started swimming lessons again. I was only being sick in the mornings again. This was in late Year 8.
Sadly, after a while, after every outing to the swimming pool, I'd develop cold-like symptoms. Mum was very worried, so kept taking me to the doctors and no avail. We eventually came to the conclusion that I could be allergic to the chlorine, which would have made sense but my symptoms kept getting worse. Was I just allergic to everything or was it hayfever? (I now know it isn't hayfever) Runny nose, bizzare feelings of light headedness, ears popping, inability to swim underwater anymore from the pressure, sneezing constantly, itchiness and temporarily losing my voice. After I get out the pool, everything goes, apart from the sneezing, the cold-like symptoms and the intermittent voice. Come early Year Ten (I had moved schools at the time after being extremely badly bullied and after a case the police had to get involved).
Each time after my swimming session, the day after it, I'd get an extremely dry throat, physically lose my voice and have a deodorant, washing up liquid-like taste in my mouth. It also burned, made me feel really ill and made my throat extremely dry... This lasted for a week up to twelve days each time, only for it to come back every seven-to-twelve days I went swimming again, which was when the 'cold' or the 'allergy' had subsided.
After this happening for so long, I had had enough, so I had quit swimming. This was mid Year Ten. Everything subsided but every month I started to get the same symptoms that would last a week or two and go on their own again.
Come late Year Ten and I was getting the same symptoms all over again but now a few times a week, constantly losing my voice and that absolutely vile taste. My Nan was convinced anxiety was no longer the main cause and suggested that we buy some antacids;(she has silent acid reflux herself) from Zantac to TumTums but these only made me a whole lot worse. (Sorry. I cannot remember timelines exactly no longer, so this will be an disordered sequence of events). I had been referred to ENT about my voice problem and was told that there's a whole lot of inflamation but no nodules, cysts or physical damage to the vocal cords. I was also referred to Gastro and I was given an endoscopy. This proved 'nothing was wrong.' Speech and Language found nothing physically wrong with how I use my voice, so nothing there. I was also referred to CAHMS but was discharged as their support groups were too severe for me.
Here I am at stage one again. Haven't had the endoscopy follow-up test but when asked if we could have pH testing (a whole lot more effective and would prove I have silent reflux), I was denied because I 'could be selfharming my body using envasive medical procedures.' What a load of absolute rubbish! They just don't know what to do so trying to say it's my fault; 'I have a conflicting gender itentity so I lose my voice', 'It's my Asperger's', 'I'm looking for attention', 'I'm just anxious', 'I'm pretending that my suffering is real to get attention.' Oh, the rubbish I have heard!
No better but no worse. I lose my voice multiple times per day (I barely speak because of this), I get awoken a few times a week with the horrendous taste, the taste comes and goes when it pleases, stomach pains whenever it wants to, perpetual hoarse voice accustomed with some 'helpful' dryness and constant allergy-like symptoms but antihistamines help most of the sneezing, itchiness, runny nose and dry and itchy ears, face, nose and inside of mouth (post-nasal drip, is that called?) Lastly, I still feel sick every morning but only ever bring up phlegm.
Ugh! Just, so annoying! I used to contemplate suicide because I could not live with it but I get on with it now but I still want solace! If the taste and my losing of voice goes, I'd be over the moon but that will never happen!
Do you see why I think it's silent reflux?
Thank you ever so much for your time and extremely sorry for the length! So much content but I know I've forgotten a tonne! Hope this gives you a clear indication. Thank you!
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