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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

Gluten/anxiety/how Quickly Symptoms Disappear
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12 posts in this topic

Okay…so I am new to all of this and I am self-diagnosed. I couldn't go to a doctor to verify my gluten intolerance/Celiacs because I had too severe of anxiety to even want to leave the house, much less go to a doctor's office. However, I am 100% (more like one billion percent) sure that I react to gluten.  My symptoms prior to starting gluten-free diet: rash on arms and legs (which I had been to 3-4 different doctors for prior to gluten-free diet), Raynaud's phenomenon, tingling legs and arms (also fell asleep), loss of enamel on my teeth, and panic attacks/ anxiety.  Within probably 1-2 weeks my rash and Raynaud's went away completely (AMAZING!).  Anxiety went away more slowly but DRAMATICALLY better. 

 

I have been gluten-free for about 1 year now. Each time I get glutened, I experience symptoms of course. 

 

However, I recently did something REALLY dumb. I drank an Odwalla that was not a gluten free one. In fact, a predominant ingredient was a wheat ingredient.  I drank the entire thing. 

 

Now, this has happened right after Christmas, but I feel like I am STILL feeling it.  Is this possible? I have terrible anxiety - the kind that makes me thing…"oh yeah this is how terrible this feels"…because I have had the joy of forgetting over the past months. But on top of that, over the last two weeks, I have started to feel queasy and get headaches. 

 

Another option this could be that I just got my hair colored. I went platinum and highly doubt that any of the products were gluten free…but does this matter?  I thought it only mattered when there was a chance of me ingesting it, which there wasn't at a salon.  But the hairdresser really rubbed my scalp hard and my head was burning from the color. Could I have absorbed gluten?

 

Finally, I am wondering if there is anyone out there who is like me…when I react to gluten now, yes, my stool is different than usual, but mostly my symptoms are tingly hands and legs, brain fog, and ALWAYS anxiety. 

 

Thanks for responding!!!!!

 

 

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Gluten can't be absorbed through intact skin. It is concerning that the dye that was used was burning your scalp though. Did you tell your colorist? If not you should since this may be an allergic reaction that could get severe if you use those products again. You sure don't want to go in for color and walk out with hair falling out and nasty sores on your head or having a ride to the hospital for a severe allergic reaction. My hairdresser lets me bring in my own gluten-free shampoos and conditioners and there are dyes that are gluten-free so do mention this to your stylist.

It sounds like you may have strong brain impact from gluten. Your not alone in that. Can you have your doctor check your vitamin levels? If you are low that may contribute to the problems. Tingling and numbness can be seen with low B12. You could try supplementing with sublingual B12 and see if it helps.

Counseling can help you to deal with the anxiety and agoraphobic tendencies. I have lived with both although for me the cause was not gluten related so the diet didn't help. A counselor or psychologist may be able to teach you coping methods for the times you are glutened and your issues flare. 5 years ago I couldn't even go in my own back yard. Now I live an almost normal life thanks to counseling and a lot of hard work.

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Good to know about absorption.... It is considered normal for the scalp to burn like that when needing to lift enough to go platinum. That being said, I think it's my last time!

The tingling is gluten. I get it every time I have gluten and it goes away. Same with the anxiety. Mine actually goes away.

Just trying to think now if it could be from something I are weeks ago or if I had something else more recently. It always feels like my symptoms take a long time to show up and last a long time. Does anyone else have that?

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If I get accidentally glutened my symptoms last for a week or more. I get crazy (just ask my family) and have tingling issues too that have been resolving as I heal. Nerve damage takes a long time to heal -- if ever, but I am always hopeful.

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One of my predominant symtoms is anxiety as well. I had frequent panic attacks before going gluten-free, and now it's a very occasional thing. If I feel my anxiety getting up for no apparent reason, I know it was something I ate (soy also gets my anxiety going). I'm also self-diagnosed, but Celiac runs in my family and anxiety/depression has been a symptom for all of us.

 

That said, yes it is most definitely possible that if you got seriously glutened the symtoms can last a few weeks. If you drank a whole non-gluten-free beverage (beer?), then that probably did you in for a while. For example, I got glutened last Christmas too (there WAS stuffing in the turkey, thanks for telling me, bro!) and it took at least a month to fully recover. So be patient, be nice to your gut, make sure no other possible gluten is sneaking in anywhere. Getting your vitamin levels checked is probably not a bad idea, so you'll know what you should be supplementing.

 

As for dealing with the anxiety, it helps me to know that it's a symptom that will go away, that you can tough it out and get back to your normal self. I've found that meditation/mindfulness practice is a big help to stopping your mind from racing off into all the anxious "what ifs" and keeping somewhat grounded. Having someone you can talk to is also important (you can always vent on here!), and that your partner/family/friends understand that your anxiety is a symptom that will pass (and that keeping you gluten-free will keep you and everyone else happy).

 

Anyway, welcome to the Forum. Hope we can help.

Feel better!

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My raynaud's went away as well! there has been a lot of connection between the two, actually

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This was all so helpful…it's such a relief to know others feel the same I do.  I especially feel doubted/questioned by non-gluten intolerant/Celiac people others because I am self-diagnosed.  Anyway…thank you! I already do feel better.  There have been a few things that could have had gluten I realized…I ate like 4 of those ice cream snickers bars too and I thought the hash brown brand Alexia was gluten free, but I just read that they cannot guarantee it anymore.  I am still trying to figure out the level of gluten that I react to, but I guess I am just assuming that it is anything and everything, even cross-contamination, until I am proved wrong.  Also, I haven't been taking even a multivitamin, so I am at least going to start that too… :)

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I am formally diagnosed (3/2013) but my husband is not. He went gluten-free 13 years ago at the advice of my allergist and his GP. He got immediate relief from storing and chronic sinus infections. Later all those body aches and other issues he attributed to aging disappeared as well. He knows that gluten is not for him!

Oh, I used to buy the Alexia frozen potato products, but have switched to Oreida who now has a "natural" version.

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I was diagnosed recently with a scope into the intestine and blood tests.  However, my first symptom if I accidentally eat gluten is anxiety.  I can't be around anyone for a while, my fiancé can't touch me because I feel smothered if anyone is around me.  I feel like I am dying and sometimes just sob for an hour.  Then after that part is over I get racing heart, palpitations, sweating and insomnia.  Then, it goes into the severe stomach pains.  After that stage is done, I get foggy, exhausted and my wrists and face get numb and tingly.  Basically for 24-48 hours of severe symptoms and then it takes a week to two weeks for the palpitation's and chest pains to stop completely. 

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I have been dealing with anxiety and it is still hard to tell if it is a symptom of my celiac or not. It comes and goes, and to be honest, I eat out a lot. Usually tacos with corn tortillas and that is it, but sometimes I will have a gluten-free option offered from a kitchen that cannot say there won't be any cross contamination. Maybe I should be extra obnoxiously strict for a month and see if it alleviates my anxiety attacks...

 

Oh, and I totally drank half a Green Monster Odwalla about 6 months after I was dx'd. Mega face palm! But I actually didn't feel too terrible... a little bit of D and cramping, but that was it. Still, I no longer drink any Odwalla products. 

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However, I recently did something REALLY dumb. I drank an Odwalla that was not a gluten free one

 

 

I was going to say "wheat sprouts" is on the label, but I reread what you wrote and you already found it,

Never mind! :)

I have been dealing with anxiety and it is still hard to tell if it is a symptom of my celiac or not. It comes and goes, and to be honest, I eat out a lot. Usually tacos with corn tortillas and that is it, but sometimes I will have a gluten-free option offered from a kitchen that cannot say there won't be any cross contamination. Maybe I should be extra obnoxiously strict for a month and see if it alleviates my anxiety attacks...

 

Oh, and I totally drank half a Green Monster Odwalla about 6 months after I was dx'd. Mega face palm! But I actually didn't feel too terrible... a little bit of D and cramping, but that was it. Still, I no longer drink any Odwalla products. 

 

 

Might want to try NOT eating out for a while hon. I find that continuous CC from kitchens can really provoke my symptoms.

Restaurants try really hard and some get it right (Bonefish Grill, for example) and some do not.

 

Reading labels gets easier, but yes, that "wheat sprouts and wheat grass and barley"  thing on the Odwalla label...would send me running.  :unsure:

 

I found the anxiety did take a while to subside, but now, after 3 years, even if I get "hit", that does not come back.

Joint pain, big D, some hair loss,....yes. ugh.

 

Hang in there, guys...it gets better!

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