Hi Steve, yes this is a problem I’ve had for a few years. I can go days without it bothering me and then suddenly it starts again. The food gets as far as my throat and everything stops!!! Very scary with food sitting right there!
Over the years I’ve taught myself a couple of tricks that help. Always have a glass of water or juice with you when you are eating.
When the food sits in your throat, try NOT to breathe… . take a sip of water… that will usually get the reflex going again.
Another one that works, touch your throat and at same time think swallow! Sort of shout it in your head. That will usually get it going again.
Avoid dry food. Try to always have gravy or sauce or mayo with things.
I saw a speech therapist about it just a few months ago. He said my above tricks were good… and he gave me a few more
Avoid food that has two textures… for instance cereal & milk or soup with lumps of veg and meat in. It apparently confuses the swallowing reflex… but to tell you the truth I haven’t found those foods a particular problem.
He said spicy food is good as it ‘wakes up’ the swallowing reflex.
He also said, and I DO find this useful, try to avoid being distracted when you eat. Turn the Tv off. Avoid conversation (easy for me as I live alone) and focus on your eating.
Glad you have been refered to a speech therapist. Oh btw… there is no pattern to it. It’s the brain not sending the swallowing message to the throat automatically… so we have to find tricks to make it work.
As I say, I’ve had the problem for a few years (since before diagnosis) and I’m still here to tell the tale! It’s still scary but not nearly so scary as when I first had it. You get better at dealing with it and teaching yourself NOT to panic and NOT to breathe in.
Hope this helps.