Sjögren's syndrome makes parts of your body that are normally well-lubricated, like your mouth and eyes, dry out. Double board-certified rheumatologist Rosy Rajbhandary, MD, provides expert treatment for Sjögren's syndrome at Rheumatology Clinic of DFW, PLLC, in Burleson, Texas. Dr. Rajbhandary has considerable experience in treating the symptoms of Sjögren's syndrome and relieving problems like dry, irritated eyes and mouth. To benefit from her expertise, call the office or book an appointment online today.
Sjögren's syndrome is a condition in which parts of your body that require constant lubrication start to dry out. The areas this can affect include:
As your eyes get drier, they're likely to feel irritated and may start burning painfully. Dry eyes make you prone to infection and could damage your corneas. A chronically dry mouth can lead to inflamed gums, yeast infections, and tooth decay.
Other common Sjögren's syndrome symptoms include difficulties swallowing (dysphagia) and acid reflux. You could also develop stiff, painful joints, swelling in the salivary glands along your jaw, and vasculitis (inflammation of the small blood vessels).
Sjögren's syndrome is an autoimmune condition. That means your immune system becomes overactive and starts attacking healthy cells as it would when defending you from harmful organisms like viruses.
When you have Sjögren's syndrome, your immune system attacks your salivary glands and tear ducts, resulting in inflammation and reduced fluid production. It’s not clear why some people have autoimmune disorders like Sjögren's syndrome, but there could be a genetic influence.
Secondary Sjögren's syndrome affects people who already have an autoimmune disorder like lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus) or rheumatoid arthritis. Primary Sjögren's syndrome affects people who don't have any of these conditions.
For many patients, Sjögren's syndrome doesn't cause any serious health problems. However, if you're experiencing unpleasant symptoms, Dr. Rajbhandary offers several effective therapies.
Treatment also reduces your risk of getting eye infections or developing tooth decay as a result of having Sjögren's syndrome.
Dr. Rajbhandary can prescribe medications that increase the production of saliva to help with a dry mouth. You can also keep your mouth lubricated by drinking liquids regularly and chewing gum.
Artificial tears help keep your eyeballs moist, and some eye drops increase tear production as well. For severe dry eye, you might need to undergo a procedure in which you have tiny silicone plugs implanted in your tear ducts to block them off.
For relief from troublesome symptoms of Sjögren's syndrome, call Rheumatology Clinic of DFW, PLLC, today or book an appointment online.