Recently, I moved from the east coast to the southwest. Among the many changes I've been incurring, adapting to the high altitude has definitely proven a challenge. I've been a runner for about 2 years (I'm 30yrs old), so I'm not incredibly experienced, but I've learned enough about my body's abilities and limitations to notice something going on here. The first time I attempted to run after moving was disasterous. I could hardly push through a mile before feeling exhausted, out of breath and in pain. (Also, many running paths involve a large portion of gradual uphill running, which I have little experience with). I was prepared for a challenge - I'd read about the biologial changes due to lack of oxygen and the increased need to stay hydrated, but I wasn't expecting the jaw/tooth pain that came with it. After I stopped running, exhasperated, I was in A LOT of pain in both my upper and lower teeth. It wasn't sharp - it was more dull, lingering, throbbing, pulsing and unbearable. I kept wanting to push my finger against my teeth to counter the pressure. It lasts for about 10 min after I stopped running. I'm familiar with pain in my teeth due chronic sinus problems. In fact, I have sinus headaches about 3-4 days per week, and have suffered from them all of my life. I even have pain in the back of my head when they're highly inflamed. I take a prescribed nasal spray daily and it's dramatically reduced the amount and intensity of my headaches, but I still get them. However, I've never experienced this level of pain in my teeth directly caused by running.
I've also read that changes in blood pressure during physical exertion can trigger increased blood flow to the gums/teeth (as with the rest of the body), but what's causing the pain? I don't have gum disease, so that's not a factor. I'm also asthmatic, but my asthma is at a point where it's RARELY exercise induced (I don't take any meds but do have an albuterol inhaler). This pain doesn't occur every time I run. It was most prevelant the first time I tried running in high altitude and then happened again when I started running after taking a couple months off. I wouldn't be surprised if it's sinus related, but worst case, it could be a cardiac issue...which scares the crap out of me. I haven't had any previous heart issues and there isn't any strong family history of heart disease.
One other aspect - I get VERY hot when I exercise and get very red. I'm also a heavy sweater...and salty at that! I will say, high altitude has reduced the amount of sweat I produce being that it evaporates quicker, but I worry if there's a problem with over-heating/blood pressure. I recently had my blood pressure monitered over the course of a couple months and it was normal, though in the past it has been on the higher side before. I've expressed this to my doctor but she doesn't think there's any issue.
Anyway, thanks for reading my dilemma. I'd appreciate any advice or insight!
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