It is perfectly normal to swallow small mouthfuls of saliva on a regular basis, but you may swallow excessively due to a physical problem or an anxiety concern. Before you can find relief, you must first determine what is causing your excessive salivation. Fortunately, once you’ve determined why you’re swallowing too much saliva, you can usually take simple steps to alleviate the problem. Working with your doctor may be the best way to address your swallowing issues in some cases.
Method 1 Producing Less Saliva
1. Drink more water throughout the day. When you are dehydrated, your body produces more saliva than it normally would. As a result, drinking more water throughout the day will result in less saliva. Drink a small glass of water before going to bed.
To stay hydrated, drink a glass of warm water when you wake up, before and during meals, and throughout the day, taking sips whenever your mouth feels dry or thirsty.
2. Avoid extremely sweet or sour foods and beverages. When you bite into a sour candy or a sweet treat, you may produce extra saliva to dilute the strong taste sensation. Cutting back on extremely sour or sweet foods may help reduce the amount of saliva in your mouth noticeably.
This is why people suck on sweet or sour candies to keep their mouths moist.
3. Discuss medical and medication causes with your doctor. If your body produces excessive saliva for unknown reasons, your doctor may be able to identify the underlying medical condition. If the cause is a known medical condition or treatment, your doctor may be able to change your medication or make other treatment changes.
Excess saliva production can be caused by a variety of medical conditions, including infections, viruses, and gastric issues (particularly GERD). Similarly, some medications, such as the antipsychotic Clozapine, can cause excessive salivation.
4. To treat hypersecretion, take any medications that have been prescribed to you. Hypersecretion is the medical term for excessive saliva production, and several medications are available to treat it. However, they can cause side effects such as sleepiness, dizziness, and a racing heartbeat, so discuss the benefits and drawbacks of the various options with your doctor. Glycopyrrolate is a common hypersecretion medication (Robinul).
Propantheline is a type of amino acid that is found in (Pro-Banthine).
Amitriptyline is a type of antidepressant medication (Elavil).
HCL nortriptyline (Pamelor).
Scopolamine is a type of scopolamine (Transderm Scop).
Tip: If excessive saliva is caused by a medical condition, it can be difficult to control. For example, it could be one of the most difficult symptoms of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
Method 2 Dealing with a Lump in Your Throat
1. Take note of when you feel a “lump in your throat.” You may have a globus if you frequently feel like there is a literal lump in your throat that makes swallowing difficult, especially when swallowing saliva. A globus isn’t a real lump, but it is a real condition that causes the sensation of one.
Some people only notice a globus when they swallow saliva, while others notice it whenever they swallow.
When you have a globus, you may feel compelled to swallow frequently, even if only small amounts of saliva, in order to “test” the sensation.
Contact your doctor if you constantly feel a lump in your throat, especially if you can feel or see an actual lump. While uncommon, you could have a tumour or another condition in addition to a globus.
2. Consult your doctor to be tested for GERD and to receive treatment. The most common cause of a globus is gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Backflow of stomach acid harms your esophageal tract and can cause lumps, especially when swallowing your own saliva.
Managing your GERD with medications, dietary changes, and lifestyle changes may help you get rid of your globus.
3. Concentrate on swallowing forcefully and only when absolutely necessary. It’s sometimes easier said than done, but taking larger swallows less frequently may help you get rid of the “lump in your throat” sensation. Set a timer to see if you can go 1 or even 2 minutes between swallows during the day (while not eating).
The average adult swallows 600 times per day, or approximately 35 times per hour while awake and approximately 6 times per hour while sleeping.
Method 3 Swallowing Less Often with a Sore Throat
1. Experiment with hot liquids, cold liquids, and frozen treats. Try some of the tried-and-true sore throat remedies that have stood the test of time, such as chicken soup, hot tea, ice chips, and frozen ice treats. Cold foods can numb the pain receptors in your throat, while hot foods can relieve some of the pain and help clear away mucus.
When you have a sore throat, you may feel compelled to swallow repeatedly in order to temporarily relieve the pain with a coating of saliva. As a result, you may experience dry mouth and an upset stomach.
2. Suck on a pectin-containing throat lozenge. Throat lozenges may help relieve a sore throat and reduce the amount of time you spend swallowing. Put a throat lozenge on your tongue and wait for it to dissolve. To relieve sore throat pain, repeat every 2 hours.
A throat lozenge should not be given to a child under the age of five. They should not consume a throat lozenge.
3. Chloraseptic (phenol) spray should be sprayed down your throat. You may be able to reduce your excessive swallowing if you soothe your throat with Chloraseptic spray. Spritz your throat 1-2 times before spitting. Use the spray as needed to relieve throat irritation for up to two days.
Avoid swallowing the Chloraseptic.
When using Chloraseptic, you may experience mouth tingling.
4. To temporarily relieve pain, use warm salt water or throat spray. 3 g (0.11 oz) salt (approximately 12 tsp) in a glass of warm water Take a large sip, gargle it in the back of your mouth, spit it out, and repeat until the glass is empty. This can be done as frequently as every 3 hours to provide some sore throat relief.
Alternatively, squirt one spritz of throat numbing spray into the back of your throat, wait 15 seconds, and spit it out. Repeat this every 2 hours for up to 2 days.
Make every effort to avoid swallowing the salt water or throat numbing spray. Swallowing a small amount, on the other hand, will not harm you.
5. To keep the air moist at night, use a humidifier. As you breathe, dry air dries out your throat, causing your body to produce extra saliva to coat your throat when you swallow. When you have a sore throat, you’ll probably feel most at ease with a humidity level between 40% and 60%.
A humidifier can help during the day and especially at night, when your throat can become extremely dry, causing you to repeatedly swallow saliva.
A high humidity level—above 60%, and especially 70%—can also cause issues. It may increase the number of allergens in your home and cause additional congestion. As a result, in some cases, a dehumidifier may be preferable to a humidifier.
6. Sleep with your head elevated to reduce sinus drainage. Unfortunately, post-nasal drainage can irritate your throat and cause you to swallow. Elevating yourself may help you limit the impact of this effect. Place extra pillows or a blanket under your head to support your upper body.
7. Consult your doctor if you have a severe or persistent sore throat. The majority of sore throats are caused by common viruses and resolve in 3-7 days. Contact your doctor if your sore throat is extremely painful or lasts longer than 7 days. Also, if you have symptoms such as a high fever, chills, or breathing difficulties, contact your doctor.
If your child has a sore throat for more than three days, or if the sore throat is accompanied by swollen glands or a temperature above 38 °C (100 °F), consult a doctor right away. Children aged 5 to 15 are the most vulnerable to strep throat and other bacterial infections.
Method 4 Treating an Anxiety Issue
1. If swallowing causes you anxiety, consult your doctor. Swallowing can be stressful even if you don’t have a physical problem like hypersecretion, globus, or a sore throat. Swallowing is a common sensorimotor disorder, characterised by heightened awareness of an unconscious bodily function that causes great anxiety. If this describes your swallowing experience, contact your doctor.
Sensorimotor disorders are a subset of the OCD spectrum.
You may feel extremely anxious when swallowing anything, but especially when swallowing saliva.
Your anxiety about swallowing may cause you to “test” yourself repeatedly to ensure you can do it, resulting in you swallowing your saliva all the time.
2. Assure yourself that swallowing is safe. Your doctor may refer you to an OCD spectrum expert, who will then collaborate with you to develop treatments and techniques for your specific condition. One common technique is to remind yourself on a regular basis that swallowing is perfectly normal, that you are perfectly capable of swallowing, and that it is acceptable to swallow saliva when necessary.
For example, you could tell yourself, “It’s time to swallow now, swallowing is normal, and I can swallow without any problems.”
3. As needed, use “body scan” and mindfulness techniques. Instead of focusing solely on swallowing, these techniques assist you in expanding your awareness to include your entire body. Body scanning entails focusing your attention on individual body parts in a sequential manner. Similarly, mindfulness entails paying attention to all of your sensory experiences in the present moment.
You can practise these techniques on your own, but you may have better results if you work with a trained mental health professional.
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