Swallowing food comes naturally to human beings. But when there is a problem, it is usually called Dysphagia. Esophagus, a muscular tube-like organ located at the back of our throat, usually helps in swallowing food and transferring them to our stomach. When esophagus does not function properly, dysphagia happens. Patients suffering from brain or nerve disorder, seniors and babies might have this problem.
People with dysphagia might witness the following issues:
There are 2 main reasons, why the Esophagus might become dysfunctional.
There can be a number of reasons for both the condition. Here are the reasons why the muscles and nerves might not work.
The esophagus might be blocked because of these reasons:
Achalasia is a very rare disease. Normally, your esophagus squeezes food down by making the muscular valve in between the stomach and esophagus relax. Achalasia occurs when this muscular valve is unable to relax and thus the esophagus is unable to squeeze the food down. The most common reason why this happens is because the nerves in your esophagus are damaged. The nerves most commonly get damaged because of abnormalities in the way your immune system responds. Till now, there is no cure to achalasia; however, surgery or minimally invasive therapy can make the symptoms of achalasia more manageable. Here are all the causes and symptoms of achalasia:
The exact cause of achalasia is not yet known. However, there are some theories on what causes achalasia. Here they are.
Dysphagia is the difficulty in swallowing food or liquid. Most people suffering from dysphagia are unaware of their medical condition and only realize it in later stages. When not diagnosed and treated in time, it may lead to aspiration pneumonia (lung infection occurring due to food particles or saliva entering the lung), weight loss, dehydration and malnutrition. Some of the symptoms include:
There are two types of dysphagia:
This is also known as low dysphagia and is the condition in which one can sense food getting stuck in the throat or chest area. The problem lies in the esophagus. Generally, the surgical procedure is required to solve the problem. Some of the causes of low dysphagia include-
This is also known as high dysphagia and is the condition where the throat muscles become weak making it difficult to swallow food. Some of the causes for high dysphagia include- stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Zenker’s Diverticulum (a condition in which food particles get accumulated inside a small pouch in your throat) and cancer.
These were some of the treatment options for dysphagia that prove it is treatable and can be cured easily. Generally, dysphagia occurs in older people and babies. Whatever may be the cause, the main purpose of the treatment of dysphagia is to make the patient go back to oral feeding.