Still struggling to eat

I am now 6 months post treatment and I am still struggling to eat. It is not so much the eating but the swallowing, my mouth is extremely dry which is bad enough but I still have a build up of mucus which makes it worse as it is thick in my throat which makes the food almost impossible to get down. Instead of improving my throat and mouth are getting worse but my SALT is not happy with. I don’t think she believes that it is as bad as I say because until about 6 weeks ago it wasn’t as. Even I can’t understand why my mucus buildup is worse I can’t wait to be able to eat properly again and get this peg out. 
Has anyone else had this problem? 

  • I am almost 12 months post treatment and I still struggle swallowing some food, mainly due to having a very dry mouth. In terms of mucus it took a few months for it to ease up. It used to be particularly bad at night. I was making gurgling noises and I had to sleep upright. I found that carbocisteine helped clear it with time. I also used a humidifier and cleared my sinuses over a bowl of hot water (without anything in it apart from water ). 

    If you think that your mucus is getting worse maybe consider having another chat with your SALT specialist or even your GP to see whether they could recommend anything else. I know you will get better Sunflower, it just takes time. You will enjoy eating again, you just need to take baby steps before you can walk again. Also try to treat yourself to things you enjoy and are easy to swallow (chocolate mousse ?). You will get there. SunflowerSunflowerSunflower

    Best wishes.


  • Hi Lillian have you tried Diet Coke or soda water   gentle sips to try to  break up the mucus. Have you asked for  carbusistine to he prescribed to try to thin the mucus. Try thin foods like home made soups to get your swallowing action working. Dry mouth does improve but takes time can you chew sugar free gum ti stimulate tge swalkiw and encourage saliva glands ? Boots do a dry mouth spray that’s handbag size it’s minty di yiu might need to dilute it ? Xyimelts csn he used during the day  

    have you tried acupuncture you heed auricular acupuncture ti kick start saliva  

    hugs Hazel x

    Hazel aka RadioactiveRaz 

    My blog is  HPV 16+ tonsil cancer Now 5 years  post treatment. 35 radiotherapy 2 chemo T2N2NM.Happily getting on with living always happy to help  

  • Morning Lilian. To add to everybody else's comments, Are you doing your swallowing exercises maybe three times a day, to get those muscles good and strong. I found the forceful swallow and the one where you stick your tongue between your teeth and swallow pretty good ones. You need to take a tiny sip of water to do them. Warrior on here has been given Shaker exercises (Google). I'd never heard of them but they seem to be prescribed for swallowing problems.


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  • I have just started on the Diet Coke and I chew sugar free gum every day having eventually found a flavour to suit me as al the mint ones were to harsh for me. Pur bubble gum flavour is had xylitol in it, I get it from Amazon. I will contact my doctor on Monday about carbosistine as I do have COPD   
    Again thank you all for your advice xxx