"Since I was diagnosed with Sjögren's, I have learned..."
Since I was diagnosed with Sjögren's, I have learned how difficult it can be to have a relatively unknown disease. I first knew something was wrong when I could no longer run my routine long distance runs. These feelings were no longer a runner’s rut or just in my head. The chest tightening, severe fatigue, thirst, and joint pains caught up to me. Before being diagnosed with Sjögren's, I thought it was just runner pains, but realized quickly I had no more energy to do the things I once found easy to do. I've learned to listen to my body when it is yelling at me. Most importantly, this experience has taught me that we as patients must stop downplaying symptoms to our physicians. It is imperative we communicate to our doctors clearly in order to get the proper treatment.