Hi there - I'd like to get some perspective as I have an appointment with an ENT tomorrow.
It started in early December - a tickle in my throat, accompanied by a dry cough. If anything comes up at all with the cough, there is no color - just clear mucus. This all also coincided with quitting smoking (I'm 28 - smoked on and off for about 9 years.) I was having terrible post-nasal drip and a constant feeling of junk in the back of my throat. The cough is bad on some days and then I'll have days where I barely cough at all. I've been on antibiotics (no help), had two normal chest x-rays (no infection/tumors/bronchitis, etc), and the only thing that seems to do any good is Nasonex and taking allergy medicine, although the tickle is still slight even then. I do live in an old home that is dusty, with a dog, and work in a dusty office. I am also sneezing, or feeling like I need to sneeze, all the time. My eyes at times are itchy and red. The cough is SO annoying, I just want to get rid of the tickle. I've been to my GP three times, and to the emergency room twice (also diagnosed with panic disorder, as I was having chest pains because I had myself convinced I had lung cancer). I also had blood work done. So far, everything appears to be normal. I have not had any shortness of breath, fatigue, pain, or fever. I have had alot of throat clearing. Somedays, when there is alot of drip or tickle, my throat is totally irritated by the end of the day. What could be causing this? It's been going on for quite awhile now. Also appears to be triggered by cold air (yay for Philadelphia winters!) and eating (right after I eat - cough, cough, cough). I haven't had any trouble sleeping or working out. Help me!!!!!!
When you smoke, the cilia, which are little hairs in your lungs that remove dust and toxins, get paralyzed. When you stop smoking, they start working again, so they are dragging up irritants from your lungs. That'll take a while. You may also possibly have a problem with acid reflux from your stomach--I don't know much about that, ask your doctor. Also, cut back on dairy products and sweets--not permanently, because that's boring--but those things cause your insulin to produce more mucus. Of course, you may have something going on in your sinuses, too, but your ENT will figure that out.
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