Four Treatment Options for Dysphagia Sufferers

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There are many reasons why a person might develop dysphagia. If this is a condition that you are suffering from, then you will be relieved to know that there are treatment options available.

Although it may not always be possible to cure dysphagia entirely, it is possible to alleviate the severity of the symptoms and the impact that this condition has on your wellbeing. If you have found that this condition has a big impact on your day-to-day life, then you can begin to get your life back by getting started with treatment.

What is Dysphagia?

Before moving onto four common treatment options for dysphagia, it is important to discuss what this condition actually is.

If you have persistent difficulty with swallowing, then the medical term for this problem is dysphagia.

This can make eating and drinking quite difficult and even dangerous in some cases.

If this is an issue that starts to affect you, then it is important to talk to your doctor immediately. Delaying a diagnosis could lead to a worse outcome further down the line.

You will likely find that your doctor suggests one of the following treatment options:

1. Swallowing Therapy

If the cause of your dysphagia originates in the throat, then swallowing therapy can be beneficial for treating the condition.

You will usually undergo this type of treatment with a speech and language therapist. This professional will be able to teach you a range of new techniques to improve your ability to swallow. This option is a safe way to naturally manage the condition by yourself.

2. Dietary Adjustments

Making changes to your diet is a simple treatment option for managing dysphagia. Your doctor will help you to understand which foods to choose for a healthy and balanced diet. They will also be able to explain to you why some foods are harder to swallow than others and which ones are likely to cause you more problems. Your doctor may also suggest that you add thickener products into your diet, such as Simply Thick gels, which will assist with the swallowing process.

3. Botox

A condition known as achalasia can sometimes be the reason that dysphagia presents. In this instance, the muscles of the esophagus stiffen, hindering food and fluids from moving through the system into the stomach.

Botox injections can be used on these muscles to better enable the movement of food and fluid to the stomach. This is not a permanent solution, and the injections are likely to be necessary approximately every six months.

4. Medication

The success of medication will depend on the reason that dysphagia has developed.

If the problem is in the esophagus itself, then medications such as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) could be helpful in alleviating the issue. These medications work to reduce stomach acid and soothe erosion in the throat that may have been caused by reflux.

PPIs can be used by patients daily to help treat and manage dysphagia, but they cannot be used to cure the problem, and they will not be able to heal any damage that reflux has caused internally.

Thanks to Zaklina

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