Sjogren’s and medication

“Do you take medication?” This is a question I am asked often from others who also deal with autoimmune issues. I do not take any medication specifically for autoimmune issues. Both my PCP and rheumatologist are great about taking a holistic approach to management and healing. My rheumatologist has recommended several supplements and they do help. I order almost all of my supplements online. Somewhere along this autoimmune journey, a fellow Sjogren’s patient, (shout out to you Dawn!) highly recommended taking an omega 7. I have taken this brand for years and if I miss a day or two I can definitely feel it because my mouth and esophagus end up so dry that I have a hard time talking and swallowing.

I manage my symptoms with diet, exercise, and sleep. Because I also have celiac disease, I follow a strict gluten-free diet. I eat a lot of vegetables, fruits, lean meats, and make fresh juice at least 2-3 each week. I eat very little sugar and stay away from processed foods as much as possible. I do have dairy, usually small amounts of cheese or butter. Only plant-based milk, and no soy.

I am not perfect and honestly, this was one of those less than perfect weeks. Sometimes I just get tired of dealing with the planning, prep, cooking, and clean up and all the other stuff that goes along with Sjogren’s that I just have to take a break. So, I had tacos (lean meat and veg) for three days in a row. (Leftovers, ya’ll) I haven’t even had a salad this week. (gasp) Today, I feel a little achy and tired and will jump right back on the healthy food wagon. I try to walk and/or practice yoga each day and on the days I am active I notice that I sleep better. I drink a ton of water.

Taking medication or not is a personal choice and if you deal with Sjogren’s or other autoimmune issues, you and your doc should find the best treatment option for you. I was “fired” from one rheumatologist because “if you will not take the prescribed methotrexate then I can’t help you.” The medicine made me feel much worse than dealing with Sjogren’s. That was a frustrating day, to say the least. As with everything in life, you pick yourself up and get on the way to finding a solution that will work.

I have not given up hope that this autoimmune disease will be reversed and thanks to a new online friend, I have renewed hope. This autoimmune stuff is not to be taken lightly. I am trying a new supplement and am seriously considering seeing a functional medicine doctor. The only reason I say “considering” is the same reason as above — I’m tired of dealing with it this week! If you deal with Sjogren’s or other autoimmune diseases, do you take medication? How do you manage your symptoms?

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