Who can diagnose dysphagia?
Dysphagia can be diagnosed by the following types of medical providers:
•A gastroenterologist. This professional treats digestive problems.
•An otolaryngologist. This professional treats issues with the ear, nose, and throat.
•A neurologist. They treat issues that arise with the brain, spinal cord, and nervous system.
•A speech-language pathologist. This individual evaluates and treats problems with swallowing.
What are the treatments for dysphagia?
•Exercise your swallowing muscles. Some exercises can be done that train your muscles to work together so you can swallow normally. These exercises are often required when one has a problem with their nerves, brain, or muscles. Some people may also have to find a way to position their body so that they can swallow better.
•Change the types of foods you eat. You may need to change your diet so that you eat more easy to swallow foods.
•Dilation treatment. With dilation treatment, a device is placed in your esophagus. The device expands narrow areas of the esophagus. This treatment may need to be repeated depending on the severity of the problem.
•Endoscopy. If there is something stuck in your esophagus, a long, thin scope can be used to remove the lodged object.
•Corrective surgery. If something is blocking your esophagus, you may need it removed. Sometimes surgery is required with people who have an issue with the lower esophageal muscle.
•Medication. If you have a form of dysphagia that is related to GERD, heartburn, or esophagitis, prescription medicines may be able to help prevent stomach acid from entering the esophagus. If you have an infection in your esophagus, these are often treated with antibiotics.
Contact Louisiana Voice and Swallow Solutions for a complimentary consultation.