Swallowing Disorders

Swallowing disorders, also known as Dysphagia, occur when there is pain or difficulty when swallowing. These disorders may make it hard to swallow liquids, foods, and even saliva depending on the severity of the condition. Although swallowing disorders are more likely in the elderly, anyone can develop Dysphagia.

Symptoms Of Dysphagia

A few symptoms of Dysphagia include painful swallowing, coughing, gagging, sore throat, drooling, heartburn, and many others revolving around chest and throat pain.

There are many causes and symptoms that are associated with Dysphagia. A stroke or other nervous system disorders can weaken tongue or cheek muscles, making it difficult to trigger the swallowing response. Other things such as smoking and alcohol consumption can lead to swallowing difficulties, as well.

How Is Dysphagia Treated?

Dysphagia is treated differently due to the severity and cause of the disorder. Swallowing therapy and exercises, medications, or surgery can usually treat Dysphagia. Chewing slowly and eating smaller, more frequent meals are also good ways to prevent swallowing difficulties.

Patients with severe Dysphagia may need to be fed intravenously or be hospitalized to stay healthy and maintain their weight.