I am experiencing all these things for the first time since giving birth in April.
My throat gets very itchy when I eat (not all the time, just sometimes) so much so I want to scratch my ears and throat but cannot. I cannot seem to pinpoint which foods are causing this, although it seems avocado and toast are two. It just happened with plain white rice as well.
I am also getting a lump in my throat and difficulty swallowing.. not all the time again just sometimes..
And a feeling like I cannot get a full breath, want to yawn, but not gasping for air or wheezing... and this seems to happen when my stomach is very empty.... and goes away with eating...
The dr. diagnosed acid reflux, but couldn't explain the breathing or itchy sensations. I have never had allergies, asthma, or digestive problems before.
I am wondering if this sounds like some new food allergies, and can you get them all of a sudden at age 36?
you can develop allergies at any time in your life. The only way to be sure is to get allergy tests. Also, try to pinpoint what foods you eat right before you feel like this. You can also try elminating one food at a time (after you think you have pinpointed which ones you think might be making you sick) for a week or so, and see if that makes you feel any better. It is not at all normal to have trouble breathing after you eat. And if you have reflux, has your doctor put you on any medication for it? And if so, is it helping?
The problem that you are having with breathing and feeling that you are not getting enough oxygen, necessitating you yawning to get enough air in is commonly know as Air Hunger. I am not sure whether anyone really knows why it happens, but this is not dangerous. It is interesting that you say that this seems to happen when your belly is empty. It could have something to do with a lack of energy in your body making you feel tired and it could also be related to low oxygen levels. Once you eat, your metabolism rises so that you can digest the food and thereby create more heat and energy for the body. Anyway, this is just a though and don't worry too much about this. I have experienced this at certain times too.
I would also recommend some food allergy tests too. Especially after having a baby and due to all the hormonal shifts, it is perfectly possibly to have allergies to things that you have never had. It is also to do with susceptibility also. Go and ask for the allergy tests and see if this will help.
If your difficulties breathing feel like your throat is squeezing in - or that your airway is "tighter" - you may be developing allergies to food or to environmental allergens. I get that feeling - like it's hard to get a good breath of air in - when I'm having problems with allergies. I also have those symptoms sometimes when I'm stressed. I agree with the others, though, your doc should have sent you to an allergy specialist. Lots of medications say not to take while breastfeeding or while pregnant because research cannot show most things are safe - they would have to do tests with medications and babies, and no one is going to do that. Some things you can take, some you shouldn't. You should always ask the doc (and perhaps even the pharmacist - be sure the person is actually a pharmacist or a pharm D) if meds are safe during breastfeeding. If you can't get a good answer, call a local women's center or OB/GYN. Some hospitals even have lactation consultants you can talk with. Or you can ask for a La Leache (I don't know if I've spelled that correctly) contact. They are the breastfeeding guru's that are available for anyone in their communities needing breastfeeding help.
I've suffered from symptoms similar to those you describe for years. I recently found out they've been caused by MSG (monosodium glutamate) and acidic foods. There is a book on Food Allergy by Dr.William Walsh, an allergist, that helped me enormously.
I cut & pasted the following list of sources of MSG. It's hard to avoid and more complicated than just not eating at Chinese restaurants.
I also have to avoid anything acidic, such as citrus, tomato sauce, and coffee. Some people also react to aspartame (low calorie sweetener) and refined sugar.
Hidden Sources of MSG
These ingredients ALWAYS contain MSG:
These ingredients OFTEN contain MSG or create MSG during processing:
Flavors & Flavorings Seasonings Natural flavors and flavorings
Natural pork flavoring Natural beef flavoring Natural chicken flavoring
Soy sauce Soy protein isolate Soy protein
Bouillon Stock Broth
Malt extract Malt flavoring Barley malt
Whey protein Carrageenan Maltodextrin
Pectin Enzymes Protease
Corn starch Citric acid Powdered milk
anything Protein fortified anything Enzyme modified anything Ultra-pasteurized
Some unexpected sources of MSG:
Salad dressings Frozen meals
Packaged and restaurant soups
Cheese Reduced fat milk Chewing gum
Ice cream Cookies Vitamin enriched foods
Beverages Candy Cigarettes
Medications I.V. Materials Supplements, particularly minerals
You can have asthma in the mild sense, and acid reflux can mimic asthma and in fact has been shown to mimic it so well that some people who were diagnosed with asthma soon found out it was the GERD causing the shortness of breathe, I was one of them. Asthma doesn't have to be wheezing it can be as simple as a chronic cough only at night, constantly clearing your throat(as also GERD can do the same as these)I'm surprised he didnt send you to an allergist or gastroenterologist for further testing and there are very little you can take while breastfeeding.
How soon after you gave birth did you start experiencing these symptoms? It sounds like a food allergy. What I recommend is to keep a food diary. Write down or at least keep track in your head of what you eat & everything you come in contact with. When you have these symptoms, look at what you've done, touched, and ate in the last 2 hours. Then by process of elimination, you can figure out what it is. Or to save time, you may want to see a specialist and try getting tested for allergies. I have a 3-month-old son and just recently had some similar symptoms to yours - but it didn't go away when eating and was more severe than your symptoms. Turns out I am allergic to aloe, which is in ALL store-bought diapers and almost all baby wipes too. So that is a possibility for you though maybe not likely since you said it goes away when you're eating. You might want to check with an allergist because I know from experience these symptoms are very bothersome - especially when you have a little one to take care of! Good luck, hope you feel better soon, and congrats on the baby!
There's a web site that can sell irrigation system to correct those throat problems. The only one I known so far is at http://www.glstopandshop.com. The others I'm not so sure about. Why don't you check it out and see if you can find one that are suitable for your symptoms.
Its also possibly a food allergy brought on by hormone levels after childbirth? Sadly, few allergists test for food allergies, its always the same few things they learn in med school, based on research circa 1880.