Feels Like Something Is Stuck in My Throat

Have you ever experienced the feeling of having something stuck in your throat? If yes, you're not alone. Many people ask, "What to do when it feels like something is stuck in my throat?" It usually feels as if something has stuck at the back of the throat, just behind the tongue. It can be severe or mild, and happen more frequently in some cases. This may also happen with some other issues such as loss of appetite, drooling, difficulty swallowing, hoarseness and pressure in the upper chest. There is no need to worry about anything if you experience it occasionally. If it happens more often, you may go see your doctor for further evaluation. Keep reading to find out what may be the underlying causes of this condition.

Why I Have the Feeling of Something Stuck in My Throat?

It is common to see people come online and search about "feels like something is stuck in my throat", but there isn't enough information about it on the internet. But after great effect, we have found the following causes for you:

1. Digestive Tract Related Causes

  • Esophageal spasm is a condition that makes your esophageal muscles contract suddenly and prevent food from moving into your stomach.
  • Scleroderma refers to weakening, hardening and narrowing of the tissue of the esophagus, which, in turn, make stomach acid and food particles to travel back up into your throat.
  • Esophagitis refers to the inflammation of the esophagus, which is caused by something small stuck in your esophagus. Certain conditions such as GERD may also lead to esophagitis. Similarly, an allergic reaction to airborne particles or certain food may also cause inflammation, which makes people say, "It feels like something is stuck in my throat."
  • Esophageal webs refer to a condition in which thin pieces of tissue join together to form a web in the wall of your esophagus. It can be a congenital condition or can develop later in life.
  • Diverticula occur when small sacs develop within the walls of your throat. These sacs can be congenital or form later in life.
  • Esophageal ring means a thin area in the lower esophagus narrows down and makes it difficult to swallow solid food.
  • Esophageal tumors may grow within your throat and cause difficulty swallowing.
  • You may experience a sensation of tightening when you suffer from a condition called gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD) in which stomach acids travel up the esophagus and lead to complications such as scars and ulcers.
  • You may really have a lump in your throat, which could be swollen glands caused by an infection. Your thyroid gland may also swell causing a condition called goiter.
  • Tonsillitis can be the outcome of a bacterial or viral infection, which makes it difficult for you to swallow anything. It will resolve once the infection goes away completely.
  • Lymph nodes and tumors can exert pressure on the esophagus and may make you say, "It feels like something is stuck in my throat." This may also happen due to an enlarged thyroid gland or a protruding bone on the vertebrae in your neck.

2. Other Common Reasons

All these conditions can make you experience a feeling as if something is there in your throat. However, there can be some other common causes of why people say, "It feels like something is stuck in my throat?"

  • You may feel there's something in the back of your throat when you wear dentures and lodge some food in your throat. You can have it removed easily.
  • You may have this feeling due to an injury to your brain or spinal cord. You are more susceptible to have this feeling when you suffer from stroke.
  • You may notice your throat narrowing down due to stress and anxiety. It usually feels as if there is a lump in the back of your throat.
  • Certain inflammatory conditions, such as dermatomyositis or polymyositis can affect your immune system and cause weakness and swelling in your throat.
  • You may feel as if there's something stuck in your throat when you're suffering from a condition called globushystericus. Feeling of tightness in throat is a psychosomatic symptom associated with globushystericus. Try some gaviscon to relieve your symptoms.

Others' Stories

"They say it's quite common, but I freaked out. They say it may happen due to stress, but I'm not stressed. I use a steroid based inhaler, and my doctor suggested this could be the issue. She said I should drink a glass of water and clean my teeth properly every time I use my inhaler. Bottom line is that though everyone says it's nothing serious, I'm not comfortable. Still, I guess I'll have to wait for it to go away on its own."-- Lisa

"I had the same feeling as if something was stuck in my throat, but later, I was told that it was due to my voice box that I wasn't using as efficiently as I should be. My doctor suggested some exercises, like pretend to yawn while keeping my mouth shut. I exercised regularly and noticed a change in a week or so. It's no longer there now. My doctor suggested doing the same exercise if I feel it coming back."-- Jennifer

Tips on Dealing With This Condition

If you say, "It feels like something is stuck in my throat", you may use the following tips to make things more manageable.

  • Use antibiotics if you're experiencing a feeling of tightness due to throat infections. To treat esophagitis and GERD, you will have to take stomach acid reduction medications. Be sure to avoid foods that may trigger an allergic reaction or increase stomach acid, such as sour foods, coffee, spicy foods and alcoholic drinks.
  • Seem immediate medical attention if you have a foreign object such as fish bones stuck in your throat.
  • You may have to undergo surgery or opt for radiotherapy if you have a cancerous lump in your throat.
  • Be sure to chew your food well before swallowing to reduce pain caused by neurological or congenital issues. 
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