"Since I was diagnosed with Sjögren's, I have learned..."
Since my diagnosis I have learned that life doesn’t have to stop. I was diagnosed while trying to get rid of my college weight. I couldn’t figure out why I kept choking every time I exercised. After explaining this to my Primary Physician, a journey to find the reason for my horrible dry mouth and throat began.
Since then, I have ran countless races, triathlons, up to a half Ironman, and the Chicago marathon! I have learned the healthier I am, the less I feel the disease affects me. I might just need a few sugar free lemon drops and to always have water around to complete my fitness goals.
I turned 30 this year and have had 9 teeth replaced with crowns this year alone. The disease has taken the ability to fight cavities from my teeth. It’s embarrassing, painful, and extremely costly having so much constant dental work. Not to mention, it’s mentally exhausting as well.
The best thing I’ve done for myself is to be open about my journey. I talk to my coworkers, my family, and my partner about it. The more open I am, the more at peace I become with Sjogren’s being part of my normalcy.