Not everyone who is diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome will be suffering the same symptoms, and even the symptoms you do have from the comprehensive list, may not be too severe. The condition can seem better at some times than other.
If you have normal good health then probably the first symptoms you will experience will be dry mouth and dry eyes.
However, if you already suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis then your dry mouth and eyes will more than likely develop at a much slower rate, plus the condition may not be diagnosed straight away as being Sjogren’s Syndrome.
Normally saliva in the mouth is needed to help with the chewing and swallowing of your food, but with Sjogren’s salivary gland reduced production it is going to be more difficult to eat. You may also experience a decrease in your sense of taste [and smell].
You have three sets of salivary glands in your mouth that all produce saliva. These are situated under your tongue, in your cheeks in the area in front of your ears and they are also situated at the back of your mouth, this is three on each side of your face.
If you are suffering from Sjogren’s Syndrome these glands may appear to be swollen and they may feel tender but not necessarily painful, plus you could have some fever. This situation can affect about 50% of people suffering from this condition.
Don’t forget the affect that the lack of saliva can have on your teeth. Without adequate flow of saliva [due to Sjogren’s salivary gland damage] your mouth can become a regular breeding ground for bad bacteria which will bring tooth decay and probably gum disease.
Give your dentist a fighting chance to keep your teeth in good order, don’t wait until the damage is done. You may inadvertently let it get past the point of no return and lose your teeth as well as having these other problems.
You may be surprized to note that probably your dentist will be more knowledgeable about Sjogren’s than your general practitioner.
Diminished saliva due to Sjogren’s salivary gland damage could even be responsible for secondary Candida infection.
It is a fact that Sjogren’s Syndrome will always cause your immune system to attack the glands which produce saliva and tears first.
Unfortunately the root cause of Sjogren’s syndrome is still unknown and there is a lot of disagreement currently about the criteria for diagnosing Sjogren’s Syndrome.
There are difference of opinion between the UK and the EEC and even within the US.
This can be particularly difficult for anyone who needs recompense and financial help because they are incapacitated and unable to work because of Sjogren’s Syndrome in any of its guises.