Dysphagia in Dallas, TX
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What exactly is dysphagia?
Dysphagia is described as an individual's struggle to eat or drink food and liquid. There are many reasons why a patient might have dysphagia. It might be a result of muscle spasms because they did not chew their food well enough, or other internal problems. Dysphagia can refer, also, to the sensation of food being stuck in one's chest or neck area. In the event you experience symptoms of dysphagia in Dallas, TX, help is available. Connect with our knowledgeable gastrointestinal physicians at Digestive Health Associates of Texas at your earliest convenience to let us help you learn more about solutions to get back to a better life.
What are the causes of dysphagia?
Dysphagia may occur in two different variations and the causes are unique for each type.
Oropharyngeal dysphagia describes trouble when beginning to swallow. Neuromuscular factors are more typical with this form of dysphagia. This is a result of the fact that the muscles found in the mouth, the rear of the throat, and top portion of the esophagus share direct connections with the brain and these nerves are not immune to damage, which can result in issues.
On some occasions, narrowed areas in the esophagus (strictures) or tumors forming in the posterior side of the throat can cause you to have a hard time swallowing.
Esophageal dysphagia has multitudinous and varied causes, some of the most common being:
- Scarring in the esophagus from acid reflux (GERD)
- Inflammation in the esophagus from reflux
- Esophageal muscle weakness
- Achalasia (when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is unable to relax during swallowing because of abnormal nerve control)
- Esophageal blockage due to a foreign body
- Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE)
- Esophageal spasms
What are some symptoms of dysphagia?
The most common signs and symptoms of dysphagia include (but are not limited to):
- Discomfort while swallowing
- Aspiration pneumonia
- Food impaction (food getting stuck)
- Loss of voice
- Acid reflux
- The feeling that food is stuck in your chest or throat
- Unexplained weight loss
- Gagging or coughing when swallowing
- Inability to swallow
- Liquid or food regurgitates via the nose
- Chest pain
Should you have any of the dysphagia symptoms listed above or difficulty swallowing, please reach out to our GI group in Dallas, TX to connect with a specialist near you.
How is dysphagia treated?
At Digestive Health Associates of Texas, we perform an array of treatment options to help address individual needs. The most common treatment for dysphagia includes:
- Exercises to re-stimulate the nerves that initiate the swallowing reflex
- Practicing different swallowing techniques
- Surgical intervention
- Esophageal dilation
- Medications to reduce acid reflux, muscle relaxers, or corticosteroids
- A liquid diet or feeding tube (for severe cases)
Help your swallowing difficulties subside
If you or a loved one are dealing with any symptoms of dysphagia in Dallas, TX, help is available. Set up an appointment with a GI physician at a Digestive Health Associates of Texas near you at your earliest opportunity if you experience any combination of the above-listed symptoms consistently. We can help diagnose your symptoms and find you relief. Further, it is essential to schedule an appointment as soon as possible if weight loss or vomiting accompanies your difficulty swallowing.
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