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andyshan 02-08-2010 05:12 AM

Constant phlegm/snorting problem - please help
I have had this problem for about 5 years now, and I'm at my witts end trying to understand how/why I have this issue.

Basically, I have this feeling of something blocking the back of my throat. The exact location feels like where the top of my throat meets the back of my nose and it feels like I just want to swallow all the time, however swallowing doesn't work (neither does blowing my nose). The only way to release the phlegm is to snort it which dislodges it, and it then clears. Sometimes if there's phlegm, I can spit it out, but I'm making snorting noises constantly, perhaps a good 10 - 20 times an hour. It's really quite horrible, but otherwise the top of my throat feels obstructed.

I've seen 2 different doctors and seen 2 separate ENT specialists - I must have made at least 20 appointments over the past 24 months alone. I've had a camera put up my nose to check it out, and I've also had a an adenoidectomy to remove excess adenoids from that location (about 2 years ago) and I don't feel this has helped. The doctors now say there is nothing there - i just have to 'stop snorting' - this worries me because I can actually feel something there.

I also have blocked ears which I have to 'pop' by holding my nose and breath out, I'm guessing this can be connected. I'm generally healthy, not overweight. I just don't know what the problem can be.

Can anyone suggest anything or help please?


gcsjr 02-09-2010 02:59 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Your symptoms are very common for people who have a form of acid reflux called laryngopharyngeal reflux - also known as "silent reflux" because many people with LPR don't have the traditional symptoms of heartburn.

LPR causes post-nasal drip, a lump in the throat feeling, and can cause hoarseness or a sore throat.

The best way to treat LPR is with PPIs (like Losec), avoid the foods that can trigger it (coffee, chocolate, tomato-based sauces, alcohol, peppermint), and making lifestyle changes like raising the head of your bed 6-8 inches, not eating for 3 hours before going to bed, and losing weight if you're overweight.

sandalong 03-15-2010 04:48 PM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Please let me know if you have found any answerss. I have had the exact same symptoms for six years and have not been able to figure it out. It all started with a terrible cold. I am constantly swallowing now, snorting, and coughing up the phlegm. I also have ear pain on right side of my face and face pain on that side. When I get a cold it is always worse on that side of my face. I have been everywhere to doctors and they say I my nose looks normal. Which is weird since I am producing phlegm.

Please help. I am so tired of this condition.

janet1288 03-23-2010 12:55 PM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
i have had a problem sinse january, with phelm in the back of my throat, i feel it comes from the back of my nose into my throat and then down into my chest and back. I gag with it some mornings, but the funney thing is i dont feel it at night in bed or when i first wake up, it only starts when ive been up walking about a bit. It is totally driving me mad, ive had chest xray, spiro test for copd, and now doc has given me nasonex spray which ive been using for 4 days, to no avail yet. When it started back in jan i packed up smoking but it has made no difference.

kilgore52 03-23-2010 08:19 PM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
dairy makes me have that problem

princessdia 03-23-2010 10:44 PM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Lifelong problem with this, and it's not acid reflux --tried that first. either pepcid or zantac are supposed to be the best OTC meds to try for that.
I also had serious issues with pressure changes -- descending from a flight made be want to cry, as it was very difficult to clear my ears.
I tried nasonex and several other allergy sprays, as my symptoms seemed to get worse at certain times of the year; nothing seemed to work. I was finally referred to an ENT who, after a series of allergy tests, said it was 'non allergic rhinitis' and gave me Astelin, which is supposedly the only one that will help both types of rhinitis. If I actually remember to use it every day, after about a week it does help. Two other things he told me: stay hydrated. Otherwise, the first thing to be affected by lack of proper hydration (and I am not talking severe hydration here) is your sinuses, as your body will give fluids to your kidneys, liver, etc long before gives it to your sinuses. Another thing to try is Mucinex (walmart brand is waaaay cheaper) to thin out the mucus and allow it to drain easier. And lastly, sinus irrigation will also help thin out the mucus. there is one called simply saline that is relatively inexpensive - it comes with a bunch of sea salt packets to mix your own solution, and a big enough bottle to allow you to thoroughly clear your sinuses.
Oh, and if what you are calling popping of the ears is like a clicking feeling you have when you swallow, while annoying, it is actually normal. some of us just notice it more that others.
One other thing they did say, was that I had a slightly deviated septum. I decided to get that fixed, and while it didn't do much for the other symptoms, flying is no longer painful.

brandon1021 04-26-2010 07:33 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Andy, my man!

I have the exact same problem.
There are times where I rarely snort, but there have been times where it becomes uncontrollable, such as right now.. I woke up with a cough, blocked nose which turned into a runny nose followed by a fever.. I experience cold's/flu's quite a bit but the snorting always sticks around...

Although I have no ear troubles... The main thing is just the snorting.. I do it around 50 - 100 times every hour, no joke! It is really getting on my nerve. It has gotten to the before where it begins to hurt.. I feel something in the back of my throat which makes me snort, and it just doesn't go away.. I've been dealing with the for the past 2 years, off and on.. I've been to my local doctor and all he said was that 'there is nothing you can do about it' .. I didn't like that news so I have another appointment with him tomorrow to get a recommendation for a nose specialist.

andyshan 04-27-2010 12:45 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Hey there Brandon,

It can be a real pain, and like you I have good and bad days. If you get a good response from your doctor, please let me (and others) know by posting on here. I'm just glad I'm not the only one with this problem, and if we can figure out what may be causing this (and better, a cure) that would make quite a few people happy.

Good luck, and I hope you receive good news,


brandon1021 04-30-2010 02:58 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Just got doctor from the doctors...

He diagnosed me with a virus... After being checked, and given a prescription for medication, I told him about my 'snorting' problem... He asked about it so I told him that majority of the time it's controllable but there has been times where I can't stop it, then it starts causing pain, so he then wrote out a referral for me to see a ear, nose and throat specialist a.s.a.p .. He said it could be a problem with my adenoids, but that's why he is sending me to a specialist... So it is now my duty to book an appointment, to get the problem checked out.. I'll back to you all with information about my next appointment.


andyshan 02-24-2011 01:58 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Hi all, it's been a year now since I put up my original post and I'm just wondering if anyone here has managed to find a solution to their snorting/blocked nose problem?

As for me, I've had it for so long I'm trying to live with it (although I wish dearly I could find a solution). If anyone does think they've find the cause or have something to try, let me know, I'd be ecstatic to hear it.

All the very best,


andyshan 02-24-2011 02:10 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
[QUOTE=princessdia;4210595]Two other things he told me: stay hydrated. Otherwise, the first thing to be affected by lack of proper hydration (and I am not talking severe hydration here) is your sinuses, as your body will give fluids to your kidneys, liver, etc long before gives it to your sinuses. Another thing to try is Mucinex (walmart brand is waaaay cheaper) to thin out the mucus and allow it to drain easier. [/QUOTE]

Hi Princessdia, thanks for your reply too, I was just wondering if you could let me know what kind of Mucinex I should try or that you've had (any?) success with? Also any idea what the generic brand is? :-)

I hope you don't mind asking you all these questions,

Many thanks,


djb400 05-23-2011 10:45 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
I have had this exact problem for over 3 years now and, believe me, I feel your pain. I have also been to several ENT's, each of which put a camera up my nose and told me that there is nothing there and that I just need to stop snorting. If only they had this problem, then they would know that I can't just stop, because it feels like I am drowning in my own mucus! Anyway, I haven't found a solution, but I do get some temporary relief by chewing a minty gum. I don't know why it works for me but it does. Also, I did notice that when I went without coffee for several days, it seemed a little better. Let us know if you find anything that works for you, and best of luck!

chinch2008 10-19-2011 09:23 PM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
I just started with this snorting problem. I can't take it anymore and cannot imagine living with it for years. It is very embarrassing having this problem while working. I'm a nurse so constantly snorting to feel like I'm not going to drown sometimes gets really bad. I have done everything under the sun . I read somewhere on this forum it could be acid reflux. I do have acid reflux and do not take any medications . Can anyone help me, I cannot take it anymore.

goldenarm92 01-01-2012 08:26 PM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
Wow, I cannot believe I've found other people who are experiencing this, I'm almost in tears. When I was 15, I went on vacation to England with my mother and sister. I got a cold that lasted awhile, and that was when I first experienced this sensation of something above my mouth but behind my nose, but it just never went away. I went to a number of specialists, including several ENTs and an allergist or two. Ended up getting my adenoids removed, as that was exactly where I felt this sensation. Nothing changed. By now I've tried to convince myself to get used to it, but I desperately want it to go away. If anyone knows how to make it go away, please please please post here. I really feel for all you guys posting here, we can do this.

angieuncw 05-09-2012 08:09 AM

Re: Constant phlegm / snorting problem - please help
I don't know if this will help anyone but here's my experience. I started having constant phlegm in the back of my throat around the time we had a really bad forest fire in the area so I thought it was because of the smoke in the air. But the fire came and went and 6 months later I was still having phlegm. It was driving me crazy because I would sit at work and could feel it and taste it but I couldn't sit at my desk all day and cough up phlegm. Once enough built up I could usually go to the bathroom and get it out but it wouldn't be long before it came back again. Well we traveled out of state for xmas and I realized after being gone a few days that the phlegm had completely gone away. So it obviously had to do with something I was exposed to at home. About half way through our trip I had a cup of green tea and almost immediately I could feel the phlegm start to form in my throat. I drank green tea almost everyday at home! I never in a million years thought that was causing it. It took about 4 days from the time I drank the 1 cup while away for the phlegm to run it's course and be gone again. I was so relieved to find such a simple solution to the problem. Well I haven't had any phlegm since I cut out the green tea 4 months ago until a week or 2 ago and now I'm having it all over again. I don't think I've added anything new to my diet and I definitely haven't had any green tea so now I have to start this all over again....cutting things out until I find the culprit. The hard part is it takes 4-5 days for it to run it's course so you've got to cut things out for a while and then add them back 1 at a time. Anyone have any ideas as to what I'm allergic to? Anyone else have this reaction to green tea?

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