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Difficulty Swallowing

Overview

To experience frequent trouble swallowing, often associated with the medical symptom Dysphagia, can be an extremely challenging condition. You may take the ability to swallow for granted, until it begins to cause pain and affects your everyday life. Occasional difficulty swallowing is normal, however when it becomes persistent and uncomfortable medical counsel is advised. The ability to swallow food, liquid and vital nutrients is essential to your health and basic life enjoyment. Any form of constant swallowing difficulty is abnormal, and an important concern to discuss with our doctors.

Causes

Swallowing difficulty can affect individuals of many ages and involves any problem in the process of moving food or liquid from your mouth, through your throat, and into your esophagus. Many conditions can interfere with our ability to swallow, which your doctor will identify and treat individually. Common causes include nerve and muscle complications, or throat blockage.

Symptoms

Swallowing difficulty is not only limited trouble swallowing. Additional symptoms include:

 

• Persistent choking or coughing when swallowing

• Feeling of food stuck in your throat or back of your breastbone (sternum)

• Pain during swallowing (odynophagia)

• Inability to keep food down (regurgitation)

• Stomach acid in your throat

• Continual heartburn

• Undesired weight loss

• Total inability to swallow