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Ask Dr. D. Love Your Own Question
Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18671
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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My mouth and throat are dry all the time, and it feels like

Resolved Question:

My mouth and throat are dry all the time, and it feels like the back of my throat is closing and I can't swallow or breathe, it is worse at bedtime, I'm forever trying to swallow which makes my mouth drier.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 3 years ago.
It will help if you could provide some further information:
How long has this been bothering you?
Have you had any evaluation for this?
Do you have any chronic medical problems?
Are you taking any chronic medicines?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
It has been bothering me about 6 months I it am taking an antidepressent I have been taking this for about 4 years
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 3 years ago.
Which antidepressant aare you taking?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Fluoxetine
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for the additional information.

This antidepressant is generally not an issue. There are certain common antidepressants that commonly cause a dry mouth as a side effect. I understand that you have been on the antidepressant for years, but any other the other conditions that I am about to discuss can cause a greater problem with a dry mouth if one of the antidepressants that cause dry mouth is already being taken. The fluoxetine does have a low incidence of a dry mouth as a side effect, but it is typically mild and not at a level that leads to stopping the medicine.

As for the possible cause of your symptoms, there are two common problems that can cause this that are frequently worse at bedtime. It may be related to acid reflux, also called gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). GERD is frequently worse at bedtime because lying down will allow for increased reflux because of the effect of gravity keeping contents in the stomach is lost. Most people with GERD present with heartburn, but some people do not develop heartburn and can present with throat and mouth symptoms. It also could be related to allergies, which is frequently worse at bedtime because of greater contact with allergens that can precipitate allergy symptoms, such as dust mites.

There are other problems that also can cause a dry mouth, such as disorders affecting the salivary glands. There is an autoimmune disorder that affects the salivary glands, and a dry mouth is the primary presenting symptom. However, this is not typically worse at bedtime.

Ultimately, it would require an appropriate evaluation to determine the exact cause. However, it would also be an option to try an over the counter medicine to see if the symptoms can be eased, such as medicines to suppress acid (e.g., Prilosec or Prevacid). If one of these medicines ease the symptoms, then that would be strong evidence that the problem is GERD.

If I can provide any further information or clarification, please let me know.

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