Got mono, weird pain when swallowing, any advice?
September 22, 2016 10:08 AM   Subscribe

I've got mono, yay. Instead of the traditional sore throat, I've got a weird issue when swallowing - the top-back of my throat (the bit that connects the nose to the throat?) flares in SHARP pain whenever I swallow. Anyone else experience this when they had mono? Any suggestions for relief?
posted by isauteikisa to Health & Fitness (12 answers total)
Mono gave me the worst sore throat I've ever had, and I've had strep many times. It felt like I was swallowing a spiky ball. I'd avoid swallowing as much as you can (spit?). Some sore throat spray from the grocery store might take the edge off.
posted by txtwinkletoes at 10:14 AM on September 22, 2016 [2 favorites]

Yes, the sprays have a topical anesthetic and should help.
posted by kindall at 10:23 AM on September 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

I got tonsilitis when I got mono. Worst sore throat I've ever had - swallowing was agony. The tonsilitis was confirmed with a throat swab and required a course of antibiotics, which thankfully fixed it. Still got 'em.

A throat swab will confirm if this is a bacterial infection requiring further treatment.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 10:24 AM on September 22, 2016

This sounds normal from what I remember of having mono. I wouldn't have described the pain as "sharp", but it's been a long time.

If you're trying to ask "should I make a doctor's appointment or go right to the ER?" my recommendation would be normal appointment. As long as you can continue to eat and stay hydrated, you are probably doing ok.
posted by Phredward at 10:26 AM on September 22, 2016

I had mono as a teenager and my tonsils ruptured. It hurt like hell, but no one did anything about it (until I turned 30 and finally had my scar-tissue-covered tonsils removed). You might have lesions or something back there. If you've already been diagnosed with mono, I assume you've seen a doctor, so you might just give them a call and ask what they suggest.
posted by helpthebear at 10:31 AM on September 22, 2016

Ask your doctor (or someone in their office) what they recommend for pain management. I found the topical throat sprays fantastic...for about a day, then my throat was 100% more inflamed, but YMMV. Sometimes, they will tell you something specific to take orally that can really reduce the pain, but I know mono can limit what types of painkillers you can take, so an expert's advice is always helpful.
posted by xingcat at 10:45 AM on September 22, 2016

Are you prone to canker sores? Last time I had a cold, I got a canker sore on my tonsil that was incredibly painful when I swallowed (in my case, shooting through my ear), but not at all at other times. Doctor offered me a prescription anaesthetic mouthwash, which I didn't end up using for other reasons.
posted by une_heure_pleine at 11:33 AM on September 22, 2016

prescription anaesthetic mouthwash
This is what I was going to suggest as something that your doctor may be able to give you. I had what I thought was strep but turned out to be another tonsil inflammation and they said if it got worse, they would put me on that. They called it Magic Mouthwash!
posted by soelo at 11:46 AM on September 22, 2016

If it has been a while since your diagnosis you might want to go back to your doctor. When I had mono they put me on steroids (prednisone) because my throat eventually was all but swollen shut.

[prednisone was horrible btw - massive weight gain and free floating rage but I was able to swallow]
posted by srboisvert at 1:37 PM on September 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

Oh yeah, I had this problem. I also couldn't talk at all for a while. For various reasons, I actually got my mono diagnosis at the hospital. The ER doctor recommended gargling, early and often, with salt water. It helped me a lot.
posted by alligatorpear at 2:17 PM on September 22, 2016

I also got steroids when I had mono. No fun all around, but they made it possible for me to eat and drink again.

I'd call the doc who diagnosed you and describe the pain, particularly what it prevents you from doing (eg do you just drool instead of swallowing, are you getting dehydrated because you can't drink enough, etc).
posted by nat at 3:55 PM on September 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

When I have a bad sore throat, I like benzocaine lozenges like these ones. They're available at any drugstore and they really seem to help.
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