About Swallowing DisordersWhat Is It?
Dysphagia (pronounced dis-FAY-juh) refers to swallowing disorders, which can include a variety of problems such as coughing, choking, pocketing food in the mouth, difficulty chewing and inability to swallow. Dysphagia is sometimes caused by a stroke, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), brain injury, multiple sclerosis, head and neck cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, other types of dementia, and a variety of other diseases and disorders.How We Treat It
Dysphagia is a potentially life-threatening condition due to the possibility of food or liquid entering the airway (called aspiration), which can lead to pneumonia or chronic lung disease. Prompt attention to swallowing disorders is very important, and speech-language pathologists (SLPs) at Aegis Therapies are trained to diagnose and treat dysphagia. They will:
- Determine whether an instrumental dysphagia evaluation is needed, which includes a modified barium swallow or an endoscopic assessment
- Determine what foods and liquids are safe for the person to swallow and which ones should be avoided
- Develop a treatment plan to strengthen the muscles of swallowing, if appropriate
- Train the person, family members and caregivers in strategies that will make swallowing safer
Aegis Therapies continuously searches for effective methods to improve the health and well-being of those who have dysphagia.