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Health Anxiety Are you plagued by fears about your body or health? Are you suffering from Health Anxiety? Please check other sub-forums first to see if your problem should be posted there instead. E.G. the IBS forum or the medication forum or the symptoms forum.
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  #1  
Old 22-12-09, 19:25
girly2007 girly2007 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 18
Unhappy Something stuck in my throat....

I have been suffering from anxiety for the best part of 5 years now (i'm 25) and my latest panic is the feeling of having a huge lump of phlegm (yuk) stuck in the back of my throat that just won't budge.

I feel as though it'll either end up that I'll suffocate or choke on whatever I try and eat. It's beyond scary - I just don't know how much longer I can cope with this.

Has anyone else had this?? Reassurance needed :( xx
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  #2  
Old 22-12-09, 19:39
Robbs Robbs is offline
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Re: Something stuck in my throat....

very common symptom of anxiety and the best thing you can do is just ignore it, easier said than done but as with all other symptoms the more you focus on it the worse it gets, i've had it quite a few times but its not been one of my worst symptoms, just try to accept that its only anx and wont cause you any harm its just unpleasant and it will soon subside

does it sometimes go away when your totally distracted and doing something else ? if yes then its 100% purely anxiety and all you have to do is accept thats what it is

Quote:
Originally Posted by symptoms
Throat tightening/Choking/Swallowing problems

What you feel:

Often one of the first symptoms of anxiety. People complain of feeling as though they will choke or being strangled. In reality its not nearly so dramatic - the muscles in the throat contract and salivary glands produce thick mucus leading to a feeling of restriction around the throat, it can produce a feeling that you are having difficulty swallowing or breathing. In fact you are not having difficulty, it just feels as though you are. You also get a dry mouth and it can feel like you cannot drink but you can.
You feel as though there is something stuck in your throat or sometimes feel there is a lump in your throat. Other times you may feel that you can barely swallow or that there is a tightness in the throat, or that you have to really force yourself to swallow. Sometimes this feeling can lead you to think that you may suffocate or get something stuck in your throat.
What causes this:

When in danger, stress biology produces a tightening in the throat muscles which produces the choking or 'something stuck in the throat' feeling. When in a nervous or stressful situation, many people will experience this feeling. It is often referred to as 'a lump on your throat'.
There is minimal danger of choking or suffocating under normal conditions, however, some people are very sensitive to things in their throat and therefore caution should always be observed when eating. Chewing food thoroughly andslowly will prevent inadvertently swallowing something that may provoke someone to gag. This symptom can come and go, and may seem to intensify if one becomes focused on it.
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THE STREETS: EDGE OF A CLIFF
For billions of years since the outset of time
Every single one of your ancestors has survived
Every single person on your mum and dad's side
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What are the chances of that, like?
It comes to me once in a while
And everywhere I tell folk it gets the best smile.

JUST CARRY ON REGARDLESS
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  #3  
Old 22-12-09, 19:40
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j2 j2 is offline
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Re: Something stuck in my throat....

This is an extremely commom problem with anxiety. It is called globus hystericus. I have it very frequently. I feel like I need to hack something up or that phlegm or food is caught and that I am choking. Even though I know what it is, knowing doesn't always make me feel better. I hope you are well. good luck
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  #4  
Old 22-12-09, 19:46
Gazman Gazman is offline
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Re: Something stuck in my throat....

I get this too, it is just anxiety and it is a horrible sensation, i've tried alsorts to get rid of it, the best way is distraction and time (it just seems to go on its own) but i found Fishermans friends helped mine. And worrying / focusing on it just makes it worse or prolongs the sensation.
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  #5  
Old 22-12-09, 19:47
girly2007 girly2007 is offline
 
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Re: Something stuck in my throat....

Hi thanks for the quick reply. Yes it does seem to fade when I'm distracted, but unfortunately I'm so worked up about it that I rarely forget about it!

It seems a million times worse when I've had a drink the night before. I know the logical thing to do would be to stop drinking, but when the feeling is really really really bad, then having a drink calms it A LOT. Catch 22. Don't want to end up an alcoholic either so really at a loss over what to do. x
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  #6  
Old 22-12-09, 19:52
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j2 j2 is offline
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Re: Something stuck in my throat....

If exercise is an option, I have found that 20 minutes or so of high effort can do wonders for distracting my fears. Good luck and welcome to the board.
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  #7  
Old 22-12-09, 19:54
Robbs Robbs is offline
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Re: Something stuck in my throat....

please please please dont rely on drinking to help you with your anxiety especially if it makes you more anxious the next day, i did for 5 years and ended up nearly an acloholic with lots more problems in my life and made mistakes that looks like i'll be paying for for the rest of my life, then one day after a lot of drinking the night before POW my anxiety was 100 times worse than i think it would've been if i didn't rely on drink, now i cant drink alcohol EVER and have no escape from anxiety.

its ok to have a drink but just DO NOT use it to medicate yourself for anxiety it will make things worse

xxxx
__________________
THE STREETS: EDGE OF A CLIFF
For billions of years since the outset of time
Every single one of your ancestors has survived
Every single person on your mum and dad's side
Successfully looked after and passed on to you life.
What are the chances of that, like?
It comes to me once in a while
And everywhere I tell folk it gets the best smile.

JUST CARRY ON REGARDLESS
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  #8  
Old 28-12-09, 23:13
girly2007 girly2007 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 18
Re: Something stuck in my throat....

I just want to say a big THANK YOU to everyone on this site - I feel less alone and it's very reassuring to know the different physical effects ARE actually only symptoms of anxiety and not necessarily major health problems. ( Although it seems as though 99% of the time I can't get my brain to realise this!)

I really have had a hard time of it over the past 5 years. I've gone from a popular fun loving party girl to a virtual recluse with no close friends anymore. I'm not writing this to sound all 'poor me' - just to give you a quick background of who I was and who I am now. Some days I am confined to the house, with 999 keyed into my phone 'just in case'.

Yesterday I was at the annual family meal in Manchester (about 80 miles from where I live). I am absolutely petrified of being over the Pennines or in a traffic jam and not being able to breathe as there is literally no way out. I had been dreading this journey for weeks resulting in my anxiety being a lot worse over Christmas. The journey was as I had feared and I was in a very high state of anxiety all the way. Finally got to the restaurant and the anxiety hightened as I was scared of choking on my food. I didn't eat anything and the whole family noticed. Then a terrible thing happened. My Grandad who is well into his 80s went limp and started fitting at the table. It truely felt like a 'life or death situation' - and for once not for me - for him. I have never been more terrified. The whole restaurant was rushing around trying to help him. He went in an ambulance to a and e and it turns out he fainted but has to go back for tests. I was completely FREE of my own anxiety all the drive home - all I could think about was my Grandad and praying he would be OK. I have not felt as free of anxiety for years.

Today my anxiety has been fine. Has anyone else felt like this? When you really do have to worry about somebody else your own anxiety fades? I'm sure it will be back but the situation seems to have calmed it in a weird way. (Although I am very worried about him - just not me for once). I'm not sure what answer I'm looking for here - Athough I hope this story may help people to realise that the worst situations of anxiety can have a glimmer of hope. xx
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  #9  
Old 28-12-09, 23:27
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Going home Going home is offline
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Re: Something stuck in my throat....

You've got it absolutely spot on! When we have other people to worry about our own worries seem to fade, and it is worry that keeps anxiety going. We worry about what 'might' happen and this turns into fear and the fear takes over our lives. The fear gets bigger and our rational selves get smaller. With some people it takes just one thing to trigger it, with others it might happen more gradually, but whatever our fears are, we're all taken in by them as we can see from all the posts.

I'm really sorry you had to go through that with your grandad and hope he'll be ok, but it just proves that you can transfer your worries onto something or somebody else other than yourself when you have to. Well done that you've realised it and that you feel a bit better about your own anxieties because of it. May it continue, but if your worries and your fears return, just remind yourself of that night and how well you coped.

None of us can live completely without anxiety and sometimes the mistake anxious people like us make is trying too hard to get rid of it completely...even 'normal' people have to face anxiety sometimes, its part of life. The trick is not to let it fool you.

Going home xx

Last edited by Going home; 28-12-09 at 23:36. Reason: spelling
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