I'm just wondering whether anyone might be able to shed a little light onto something that I've been living with for the past seven or so years. The back of my mouth - the bit between my ears and my throat - itches like crazy! It's the bit that you can't reach by scratching your ears, and the only slight relief is to screw your face up while trying to rub your tongue against the back of your throat... (I so hope that makes sense and someone realises what I'm going on about! ).
I've been tested for common allergies (dust, lactose, nuts, etc...) and the only things I showed a VERY slight reaction to was soy and a certain grass pollen. Normally I take antihistamines daily and use a nasal steroid spray, but these don't always give relief although they work 90% of the time. This has made it tolerable I guess, but at the moment I'm not allowed to use either for other reasons so it's really driving me crazy! I'm losing sleep over it too, not to mention that the inside of my mouth is becoming so sore.
I've spoken to my doctor on numerous occasions and they're useless - they have no idea what's causing it, and have been happy for me to just take tablets until now.
Ho hum, hope someone can help!
When my inner ears or back of my throat itch, I make a noise that sort of produces a scratching sensation... I can't describe it... it sounds a bit like a pig grunting, but not really. It can make your throat a bit sore if you do it too much. I suppose it could result in a lot of stares if I did it within earshot of someone else, too.
"Ground Control to Major Tom.... Ground Control to Major Tom...
Take your protein pills and put your helmet on...."
David Bowie- "Space Oddity"
The one and only time I tried to take something for it, I took Benadryl (for the first time in my life) and had a horrible reaction (extreme muscle tenseness, dizziness/lightheadedness, and insomnia due to the other symptoms). It was so scary that the itching never seemed to bother me again.
Oh, have you tried non-drug methods for clearing out your sinuses? Like a neti pot? Maybe that would help the itch.
Also, when is it the worst, in the mornings or at night? If it's the morning, you might be allergic to something in your bedding.
The only thing I was thinking of was - would the test have been affected by the fact I was taking antihistamines at the time?
Oh, and how do you use a neti pot?
EDIT: Ignore the question re: how to us the neti pot - I watched the video! I have to say it looks good, and I would much rather try something like this than take antihistamines and spray steroids up my nose constantly! I think this would help me whether or not it gets rid of the itch, as I do feel that my sinuses are clocked in some way. Even when I haven't got a cold, at night I can only ever breath through one nostril, and if I change sides I can feel the mucus drain from one sinus to the other with gravity (hope that's not too much information!!).
Now, where to get one from in the UK...
yes, it would. you're not supposed to take them for about 10 days straight before the test. antihistamines block histamine responses, which is what the allergy tests pick up.
So I bought Simply Saline...it has a long nozzle and I just squirt and let the saline go in and run out. Makes my nose feel good.
Remember to use salt water solution (normal water will dry u too much and hurt!) and warm or room temp water. Sometimes if i am really stuffed it takes a few trys to get a stream going, so keep on trying. Also my boyfriend has extremely different shape nostrils than I do and it is easier for him to irrigate in the nose and out the mouth (just cup the solution in your palms, tilt head forward and suck up into nose, tilt head back a bit and close your throat so you can spit out the junk, i can't do it like this cuz my nose is to pointy...and i am scared of swallowing all that snot!
keep an eye out and see if you notice any corrolation with it occuring or being worse around times that you eat certain things- most likely melon, peanut, tomato, and/or watermelon.
tomatoes will make my lips and throat and inner ears itchy as hell when my hayfever is playing up- its really quite interesting (and annoying) and i was really suprised when i realised how much i eat both them, and peanut butter.
eta: been thinking about it, and it could also maybe be that you're sleeping with your mouth open, especially if your nose gets blocked at night- that can make your throat really sore, cos it gets dry... or could perhap be irritation caused by the nasal spray (mine always used to catch in the back of my throat when i took it)- could you try a different one for a while? - there are quite a few of them.
I'm wondering if I'd not been on those antihistamines (I wasn't told to stop them), I would've gotten more than weak positives for the things that I did test positive to.
the immune system is a funny thing. it'll always recognise an allergen, but how strongly it reacts is dependant on a few factors. my reactions to tomatoes are worse (or feel worse) when i already have hayfever, cos my immune response is already triggered and releasing histamine, and its like another stressor added to the pile- similar to how a little bit of dust might make me sneeze a little, but a little dust, a few cats taped under my nose, and some trees swooshed in my eyes (or just big old pile of dust) would be pushing it too far, and i'd be reduced to a dripping, puffy faced snivelling wreck (lol, attractive). there is also a limit to how much histamine a set dose of antihistamines can handle- mine can handle me sweeping the floor of 3 days dust, but 3 weeks worth of dust invading my nose all at once is way too much for them.
it might be worth you doing a food diary. you could write down what you eat, the times, and how much you itch. perhaps don't eat tomatoes and melons in any form (ketchup, pasta sauce, etc) for a week or so, then try again and see what happens. you could try some cooked tomatoes, and compare it to fresh ones eaten on another day (sometimes with some fruits and veggies cooking breaks down the allergens enough that you don't react-i'm generally ok with tomato pasta sauce, but a tomato fresh off the plant will really hurt me). you might find a clear corrolation and track things down further- it can be pretty insightful. just be careful- apparently oral allergy syndrome doesn't tend to get dramatically worse- but there is always the risk that it could.
i'm thinking your results may well have been different had you not had the antihistamines in your system. if you had a scratch or patch test for example, your body would make a little itchy bump (or a flipping massive red weal if it was really keen) if an allergen dropped/scratched on or injected under your skin caused a histamine response. if you were taking antihistamines, that little bump might not have come up, because the antihistamines were blocking the action of the histamine on your skin tissues. if you had blood tests though, i'm not so sure... they measure igE (an antibody) and your antihistamines wouldn't do anything to the antibody production, as far as i know.
i'd have another chat to your doctor, and see if its worth going back to the ent or immunology folks. can't be fun being itchy like that all the time. i know it drives me nuts (i itch head to toe- but at least i can reach mine to scratch!) and i'll be going to the canadian docs about it as soon as i'm covered for it. at least if you know its tomatoes, you can stop your throat hurting by not eating them and getting yourself some nomato ketchup (they do baked beans in nomato sauce, and nomato pasta sauce too!) instead!
Cyrillia, I forgot to mention something... there's another trick I sometimes use- I think it might be derived from shiatsu. I press with my fingertips, one on each side, on the bone below each eye or on the bone to the side of each nostril. I don't know how to describe it, and several different points sometimes seem to work. If you hit the spot, within a few seconds of applying pressure, you should get that same sort of sensation as you get right after you use some nasal decongestant, when your nasal passages are just starting to open up. You don't have to press hard enough to be actually painful; again I'm not sure how to describe it. I keep pressing until they open up.
This doesn't usually help the itching, though.
"Ground Control to Major Tom.... Ground Control to Major Tom...
Take your protein pills and put your helmet on...."
David Bowie- "Space Oddity"
Jen - it was the blood tests I had, so now I'm doubting whether or not it could've made a difference too. I wish I could return to the docs too, but unfortunately here in the UK my docs aren't interested in testing me for allergies or sending me to ENT. I have been back and forth to them and they're happy for me to take the tablets as long as I don't bother them. I asked for allergy testing and was refused - the only reason I had the tests I had done was because I found an independant laboratory and paid privately. The last GP appointment I had I was told that they would refer me to ENT if the itching wasn't kept under control by the antihistamines/spray - which it is some of the time. I suppose I could go back there, but I really don't want to because it gets to a stage where I just feel like I'm going on (and that's how they make me feel!).
Thanks for the replies,
if you can do it, i'd consider changing doctors surgeries- then being really insistant with the new doc that its not being managed currently, and that its causing you a lot of distress and discomfort (which is totally true!). i did this- new doc, new approach- thats what finally got me to a specialist 15 years ago (crap as he was!).
incidently- did you have tests done by a lab like york nutritional labs, that does igG antibody blood testing? if so, i'd not put too much weight on the results- its a pretty controversial test with dubious evidence as to its reliability. i understand the lengths we'll go to to get answers, i paid privately and had kinesiology, which i now know to not be very scientific- i just wanted someone to give me an answer, and fix me up!
good luck with it, whatever you decide to do.
I'm just wondering whether anyone might be able to shed a little light onto something that I've been living with for the past seven or so years. The back of my mouth - the bit between my ears and my throat - itches like crazy! It's the bit that you can't reach by scratching your ears, and the only slight relief is to screw your face up while trying to rub your tongue against the back of your throat... (I so hope that makes sense and someone realises what I'm going on about! )
i get a similar itch as you have described...but i am able to alleviate it by "clicking" the back of my tongue against the back of my mouth
since it seems you can't reach the itch...i was going to suggest irrigating your sinuses...although i've never tried it. seems worth a shot if you're suffering because of this
otherwise, i would suggest sitting over a bowl of hot water to inhale the steam. maybe your sinuses are dry and therefore itchy...the steam would help. maybe check the humidity of your home...and use a humidifier if necessary
good luck relieving that itch!
It was York Test, and I wasn't aware of the controversy surrounding their services so thanks for letting me know about that.
Funnily enough though, I have to change doctors in about two months as I will be moving to a new area. I will definitely start chasing it up then, as what you've suggested sounds like a good plan!
hi.... yeah i'm tat too till now and it's killing me.ever went to specialist and the dc ask me to reduce chilli and ice water but i cant stop with chilli addiction.... there is once, as i rub my ears, i felt watery inside. i think its water retention bcoz after i had glasses of water then i can hv this itchiness... so guess had help u sm how...
Man, someone feels my pain too. I've had this exact thing for ten years or so. When I sleep with other people in the room I am notified of this sound I make in my sleep that "doesn't sound like snoring" they would say. What happens at night mostly is that I'm making a scratchy throat sound to alleviate the throat/ear itching, as Tom as mentioned--something like a pig grunting. A friend told me it sounds like a helicopter (!!!), another said it "sounds like you're dying and I don't know if I should wake you up." It would happen consistently in the early a.m. apparently when my throat/ears would become itchy and I make that alleviating sound followed by putting a knuckle in the ear to scratch it. Sometimes I wake myself up briefly making this noise or when the itch becomes too crazy, but unfortunately often I don't notice it unless someone tells me in the morning "yeah you made that noise in your sleep"! Heck, I sometimes wake up pretty refreshed, which is ironic. But now it is making me self-conscious enough to really get to the bottom of it.
I use to take Rhinocort (nasal steroid); it worked sometimes I suppose, although, again, often I don't notice the itch in my sleep. I've bunked with a friend for a week and I used that steroid, but he said I still made the sound. I've been to an ENT five years ago, also. The ENT did a scan of my nasal area probably 5 years ago and found nothing, although someone in this thread said perhaps having taken anti-allergy meds beforehand could affect the results. I've used the neti bottle rinse, but same issue with having a difficulty keeping a running diary of whether 'it' happened or not during my sleep. The above seem to help that's for sure, but not 90% of the time I would say. I also notice that melons, apples, wine, or beer close to bedtime dEFinITely increases the chance that my throat/ear will itch in the a.m. and I will in turn make that noise. I've tried gargling Listerine before bed--not a solution.
Sorry I don't have super new or useful info to add at the moment. I do think that being judicious and keeping a food diary and/or a running log of when it happens is a concrete way to proceed. Here's where I think having a spouse would be an advantage to assist keeping a record--at least for me. =p
Ahk, I realize the dates on most of the later posts read 2008; any news on this front Cyrillia?
(From southern California, USA)
This is a generational issue down my maternal family line. My grandmother, mother, myself, 2 sisters, at least 2 of my 4 kids and thus far, 2 of 8 grandkids also do what we call click-clack!
At any given time, one member is walking about the house doing this to relieve the itching both in throat, roof of mouth and ears. Imagine what family gatherings are like, lol!
My best guess is that it is due to the way some folks' sinus cavities are constructed biologically which results in improper sinus drainage to the back of throat. The epiglottis (the flap at back of throat) is also involved. Sinus drainage probably constantly hitting it. Area is red and irritated when accompanied with frequent sinus infections and/or allergies. There is constant need to pop the ears. In 1989, I had sinus surgery (another matter) and the removal of the inflamed tissue stopped it for me.
I think this malady is an accursed affliction that is prone to drive one mad!
I have had an itchy irritated back of mouth and tonsil area for a few years. It was bad enough that I was going to multiple ents to ensure I didn't have cancer. All said no and finally an unremarkable ct scan put that to rest. My question to anyone still following this is my symptoms sound exactly like yours but I was wondering if anyone only experiences symptoms on one side of mouth or throat? Mine is only ever on the right side but I was still told it was irritation from post nasal drip and allergies. Other allergy symptoms I have are only stuffiness in right nostril and at time very irritated eyes. Does it sound unusual for the itchiness to always happen in the same spot or like pp said could this just be how my nasal passages drain? TIA for any insight anyone can provide!