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Swollowing Issues

Hi, I'm Ralph

Hello, it has been over a year since I was diagnosed with throat cancer.
Im still unable to eat or drink because I have so much lets say, thick saliva that I refused to put food in my mouth. so I guess its my own fault that I cant eat.
I have tried to swallow some liquids but it didn’t go that well.
Although I was able to eventually get it swallowed, it burns my throat a bit.
And I can barley taste it .
My question is what solutions if any, are there to help heal the throat so it doesn’t burn.
I understand that the thick saliva will go away eventually if I start eating. But I cant wrap my head around putting food in my mouth.
Any suggestions would be appreciated.

  • Post #1
  • Sat Apr 8, 2017
Hi, I'm Arthur H F.

It’s been 8 months since my diagnosis and treatment and I am still not able to swallow anything. I recently had a procedure to dilate my esophagus tha could not be completed. I also have dry mouth that is very painful and if I have any saliva that goes down my throat, it burns. If I try to swallow I immediately gag. I have started physical therapy to help with my swallowing, but so far no improvement.
Did anyone answer your question? I would like to hear about other options. Thanks!

  • Post #2
  • Sun May 14, 2017
Hi, I'm Donna A D.

I am almost 5 years since floor of mouth surgery. I too have trouble swallowing, cannot chew at all. Jaw does not line up so can’t chew. Physical therapy should help you, tucking chin down toward chest really does help swallow. I always have a drink handy (tea), candy that melts in mouth. Cottage cheese, scrambled eggs, rice crispies, meatloaf, meatballs can be smushed with tongue and roof of mouth. Carrots, mashed potatoes are ok too.
Try some drink you like, that should help dilute saliva. Be patient with yourself, improvement will happen. I will be praying for you.


  • Post #3
  • Mon May 15, 2017

Swallowing Issues. Keep asking for a couple years & finally got a real answer from a head nurse for radiation at Moffitt in Tampa. I have the thick saliva & swallowing problems that cause nausea, etc……
Try diluting table salt, baking soda in 1 cup warm water. Gargle & swish, spit, till saliva/mucus stops. ⅛ teaspoon of salt & baking soda recommended, but I put about a tablespoon of each & that works for me. A commercial version of this is also made with prescription. Been fighting this for several years & it’s the only thing that works. I also drink small sips of room temp. Ice tea with a soft food. If I don’t put soft food with it, I can not swallow the tea & get nauseous immediately.

I do have a rare esophageal disorder that has built up scar tissue & dilations no longer work. And cancer surgery removed almost half of my tongue & most of my taste buds. I am presently about to get radiation TX for cancer that spread into my jaw bone, tongue tip, & base of mouth.

It is vital that you try each day to eat & drink or your symptoms will worsen. I’m on a feeding tube, as my food & drink intake is so limited. However, if I can find a way to get liquid nutrition down, I could get off the feeding tube & supplement with liquid nutrition along with the few solids I can eat. ( I start throwing up after two swallows due to the scar tissue area that has narrowed a 2" section of the esophagus. Liquids alone won’t go pass this & when it fills up, it comes up. )

Several Northern top medical centers have successfully been doing partial esophagus replacement by cutting out the bad section, inserting a shunt & wrapping around a section of stem cell tissue grown by your stem cells. In 6 weeks the stem cells grow a complete thickness esophagus & the shunts are removed. The esophagus functions perfectly. Last clinical trials were completed in 2012, but it’s still not widespread & haven’t seen CPU codes on this for insurance coverage. They have also implanted stem cells on the tongue & regrown taste buds successfully.

I need & pray everyday this proven technology gets to our leading cancer centers NOW. I have learned by being my own fierce advocate that many times there are cures to medical problems that are only available & known in the centers they are developed in.

Come on local leading researchers. Give a call to these institutions & get them to come down & do a clinical trial & teach you how to do these ground breaking technologies. It is so needed. If I had enough money I would go up to this institution & get the help I so desperately need.

Hope my advice about swallowing & eating helps. It’s a daily struggle. Warm liquids like coffee & tea do go down/ swallow without food. Hydration is so important. I try to get at least 2 quarts of water thru my feeding tube daily along with high quality fruit & vegetable & protein supplements added to my liquid nutrition. I use Gundry MD & Energy First – Pro Energy products. All free range grass fed dairy, butter, & cheese which now can be easily found at Walmart, so not expensive, so start reviewing brands & labels. Please stay away from all artificial sweeteners & added sugars. Sugar feeds CANCER. Sweet leaf organic stevia is the best, safest sweetener I have found with no additives or over processing. Comes in Liquid too. Nature Valley does half & half, cream, & milk. Kerry Gold does butter & cheese. These are only a few brands that I use. There are others. And wild caught & free range, grass fed everything else if you can eat it. Organic for fruits, but some fruits organic doesn’t make a difference. Also I use Life Extension ADVANCED BIO-CURCUMIN W/GINGER & TURMERONES & BLACK CUMIN SEED OIL. The 1st supplement has proven clinical trials supporting preventing & stopping cancer cell growth. The second helps stop & lessen affects of radiation & chemo treatment, as well as both help with many things associated with causing Alzheimer’s & Dementia. Topical use of Black cumin seed oil has proven lessening of eczema, faster healing, hair regrown, stopping premature grading of hair & naturally has the Omega 3 your body needs. Please check with your doctor if you are on any type blood thinner, as the oil also thins blood, & is presently being used to curb opioid addiction. It acts in the same way as Advil does reducing inflammation & pain, so curbs the withdrawal symptoms of opioids. I am substituting this oil SOFTGEL in place of Advil for opening the pain activator receptors which than allow smaller amounts of opioids to be used to control serious pain from cancer treatment & surgery. I have only had to use 2mg of hydromorphone twice a day since I learned, as now most doctors have, the value of adding a pain receptor activator versus increasing the dosage of opioids.

God Bless & remember to always research all findings & ASK YOUR DOCTOR before changing any meds or supplements. Each individual is very unique & can’t be grouped into a single treatment standard. It is very important to know your own body & how it is affected.

  • Post #4
  • Sat May 20, 2017
Hi, I'm Ralph

Thank you all for sharing with me. I am very sorry for your issues, but I am grateful to have others who have been where ive been.

  • Post #5
  • Fri Jun 2, 2017
Hi, I'm Ralph

I have a question, is this a method of making the thick saliva go away?
Try diluting table salt, baking soda in 1 cup warm water. Gargle & swish, spit, till saliva/mucus stops

  • Post #6
  • Fri Jun 2, 2017
Hi, I'm RJ
Thick saliva is part of the healing process from radiation I found eating as much solid food as possible made it go away faster.
  • Post #7
  • Sat Aug 25, 2018
Hi, I'm GARY N.

I had dry mouth for three mouths after my treatments it was painful to eat and I thought I had thrush, then with my first post treatment visit to the ENT he said that is not thrush. You glands have been radiated and he told me to sip water all the time and prescribed me something to increase the saliva output. No more dry mouth and pain. The prescription is for pilocarpine.

  • Post #8
  • Sun Aug 2, 2020
Hi, I'm GordonsMom

For dry mouth at night, I use xylimelts. Just one, on the side that was radiated, lasts most of the night. No more sipping water and getting up to potty all night. As well, hot chamomile tea with honey remains my go to beverage. I found ginger ale aided in loosening the thick saliva.

  • Post #9
  • Wed Dec 9, 2020

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