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Autoimmune disease

Involuntary swallowing

9 replies

BlackInk · 05/10/2021 13:34

Hi, I haven't been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease (GP says I don't meet referral guidelines) but have loads of symptoms of something, plus positive ANA, low C4, amaemia...

Latest new symptom is that, as I fall asleep at night, my throat contracts in a kind of involuntary swallow / gag that wakes me up. This can happen over and over again through the night. It definitely happens as I drift off. I'm not awake and over-thinking it at the time it happens.

I do have some digestive issues, but it doesn't seem to be related to acid reflux.

It's utterly exhausting me. It makes me feel panicky and I'm hardly getting any sleep some nights because of it.

My GP is completely fed up of me and thinks everything is in my head / normal for my age etc. But is this something that I should speak to a GP about, or should I just put up with it? Can it be related to an autoimmune condition? I've read about dysphagia, but am not sure if that's what this is. I do sometimes struggle to swallow food and drink, but that feels more related to when my digestive symptoms are bad.

Thank you!

OP posts:
jajabanks · 05/10/2021 15:38

Hi I have throat closing and wakes me up. It is acid reflux - or silent reflux as I was told by the immunologist consultant. Since I have changed my diet to paleo and lost weight, it not longer happens (and I don't have acid reflux).

BlackInk · 05/10/2021 15:55

Thank you @jajabanks I'm low BMI and vegetarian since childhood so I don't think paleo would work for me :)
I have wondered about reflux, but the throat closing thing doesn't seem to coincide with feeling acidy or other stomach issues particularly.

OP posts:
jajabanks · 05/10/2021 16:15

Ok well that rules that out 😂.
Seriously though check out the silent reflux, I didn't believe the Dr when she was talking about it , thought she was fobbing me off. Think it's worth seeing the Dr though, they might refer you or just give you peace of mind X

jajabanks · 05/10/2021 16:16

I didn't feel the acid either which I why I didn't believe her.
Obviously I have had it where the acid has woke me up too.

Tal45 · 05/10/2021 16:30

Are you sure it's not anxiety based? I've suffered with psychosomatic symptoms before due to anxiety - and feeling like there was something in my throat was one I had. Slightly different to you but worth considering as it sounds like it is making you more and more anxious and could be a vicious circle.

SeaToSki · 05/10/2021 16:38

Silent reflux is a big cause of swallowing issues. My DS (21 very fit) was just at the ENT consultant for not being able to swallow. He was prescribed omeprazole half an hour before bed for 3 weeks and it completely cleared it up. The acid apparently creeps up the oesophagus when you lie down and irritates the muscles surrounding it. They then either spasm (sounds like what you have) or just go on strike (what my DS had). If it isnt a problem with your other issues, maybe try the omeprazole for a couple of weeks, you can get it over the counter in Boots. If it does work, then taper the dose after 3 weeks, dont stop cold turkey

Bramshott · 05/10/2021 16:39

Agree it sounds like it could be silent reflux - maybe try another pillow or a mattress wedge and see if that helps by raising your head?

BlackInk · 05/10/2021 17:08

Thanks everyone, sounds like reflux could be the issue then. I have a hiatus hernia, which might not be helping in that area.

OP posts:
Abneynteel · 07/10/2021 20:58

I have a very similar symptom. I wake up sometimes a few times a night gagging. I ha e to swallow a few times over and over to get it to right itself. It’s such a strange feeling I struggle to describe it but I can’t breathe properly when it happens. And I am properly asleep when it happens. So strange, off to google silent reflux.

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