Speech and Language Plus - Swallowing and Thick It

February 12, 2014

Attention all patients currently using drink thickeners or pre-thickened liquids due to swallowing disorders.  On the official website for Thick-it (www.thickit.com) patients are able to request a free sample to try at home!  For those of you who have been diagnosed with dysphagia (aka a swallowing disorder) or have a family member who has been diagnosed, take advantage of this FREE offer!

 

Let's take some time to talk to those reading who are unsure if they or a family member are having difficultly with swallowing.  Think about these possible signs of dysphagia in both adults and children...

ADULTS:

  • Coughing during or right after eating or drinking

  • A runny nose or tearing eyes during or after eating or drinking

  • A wet or gurgly sounding voice during or after eating or drinking

  • Extra effort and/or time is needed to chew or swallow

  • Food and/or liquid leaks from or gets stuck in the mouth

  • Recurring pneumonia or chest congestion after eating

  • Weight loss or dehydration from not being able to eat enough

 

CHILDREN:

  • Arching or stiffening of the body during feeding

  • Irritability or lack of alertness during feeding

  • Refusing food or liquid

  • Failure to accept different textures of food (e.g., only pureed foods or crunchy cereals)

  • Long feeding times (e.g., more than 30 minutes)

  • Difficulty chewing

  • Difficulty breastfeeding

  • Coughing or gagging during meals

  • Excessive drooling or food/liquid coming out of the mouth or nose

  • Difficulty coordinating breathing with eating and drinking

  • Gurgly, hoarse, or breathy voice quality

  • Frequent spitting up or vomiting

  • Recurring pneumonia or respiratory infections

  • Less than normal weight gain or growth

 

If the answer to any of these questions are yes, then it is recommended that you contact your doctor and a local speech language pathologist because you are displaying dysphagia signs and symptoms.  Remember swallowing disorders can lead to poor nutrition or dehydration, the risk of aspiration (food or liquid entering the airway), pneumonia, to dislike eating or drinking, or withdrawal from social situations involving eating.  We at Speech and Language Plus want you to get help before it gets to this point.  Get help now!  Please contact us with any questions or concerns you might have. 

 

***If you have swallowing concerns do not prescribe thick-it without a doctor or speech pathologists input in order to get the best nutrition and swallowing health possible*** 

 

Information for this post was obtained from ASHA and thickit.com

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* Speech and Language Plus provides pediatric speech therapy, language therapy, and academic support services in Ft. Lauderdale and Broward County *

 

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