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What Should I Do When I’m Having Trouble Swallowing?

How your gastroenterologist in Burleson, TX, can help you

Do you have trouble swallowing? Is it painful to swallow? Do you feel like you have a lump in your throat? If so, you could be suffering from gastroesophageal reflux disease, commonly known as GERD. Your gastroenterologist can help you feel better.

Dr. Anees at Southwest Gastroenterology Clinic in Burleson, TX, provides a wide range of GI services, and can help when you have problems swallowing.

When you are having trouble swallowing, it can be a frightening and uncomfortable experience. There are many reasons why you might be having trouble swallowing. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is one of the most common causes.

GERD often begins as acid reflux, known as heartburn. Acid reflux is caused by the sphincter muscle in your esophagus not functioning properly. This muscle ordinarily keeps stomach acid from coming up into your esophagus.

When the sphincter doesn’t close properly, stomach acid goes up into your esophagus. Trouble swallowing is a major sign of both acid reflux and GERD. In addition, you may experience:

  • Frequent wheezing and coughing
  • Frequent chest pain, nausea, and vomiting
  • Sensitive teeth from eroding tooth enamel

Acid reflux and GERD are typically diagnosed with an endoscope, which is a thin, flexible tube containing a camera. The endoscope is inserted into your throat and guided down to view your upper digestive system.

Your gastroenterologist can view your esophagus, looking for abnormal tissue, growths, and other issues. A sample of tissue can be taken for biopsy.

For minor symptoms of acid reflux, you can try:

  • Over the counter antacids
  • Eating smaller meals
  • Avoiding eating before bed
  • Limiting spicy, acidic foods
  • Limiting caffeine and alcohol
  • Quitting smoking

If you are having trouble swallowing, you need to see your gastroenterologist. Acid reflux and GERD are easily treatable, but difficulty swallowing can also be a sign of a more serious condition like esophageal cancer.

To learn more about GERD and other GI conditions affecting swallowing, talk with an expert. Call Dr. Anees at Southwest Gastroenterology Clinic in Burleson, TX. You can reach him in the office by calling (817) 293-9292, so call now.

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