Can we eat pizza when we cough?

Swallowing disorder mainly when eating

Your pharmacy recommends

Optimize nutrition.

In the case of swallowing disorders, it is essential to adapt the choice of food to the existing disorder. Unsuitable food can lead to complications such as swallowing, shortness of breath or pneumonia. In addition, the menu must ensure that the patient consumes sufficient liquid and food so that there is no dehydration or malnutrition. Advice from a dietician or nutritionist is helpful when choosing and putting together food. In general, the following basic rules apply:

  • Food with a pulpy, uniform consistency such as thick soups, quark dishes or fiber-free soft vegetables are well suited.
  • Meals in strained or pureed form such as fruit puree, mashed potatoes and meat or fish are also suitable.
  • Liquid foods and foods made from solid and liquid components such as muesli or soup with a filler are rather unsuitable. In order to thicken the consistency of liquid food and drinks, tasteless thickening powders are available from pharmacies.
  • There is a particular risk of swallowing. B. with crumbly or grainy food such as rice, minced meat or grainy bread.
  • If the patient can swallow solid food (again), z. B. soft-boiled potatoes, soft bread without a crust and soft cakes.

Training and resources.

Patients with swallowing disorders often find out for themselves which sitting position they can use to swallow best. Physiotherapists and speech therapists provide support: They optimize the sitting position and use targeted exercises to train the swallowing reflex and the muscles. For some patients, technical aids, such as special drinking cups and cutlery, make it easier to eat or enable more independence. In the case of severe swallowing disorders and additional functional restrictions, it is advisable to include the relatives / carers in the training and advice.

Treat heartburn.

If stomach acid or food containing acid flows back into the esophagus because the stomach entrance does not close properly, heartburn develops. The person concerned feels this as a bright, burning, ascending pain behind the breastbone, which the stomach acid causes when it comes into contact with the esophageal lining.

Occasional heartburn is known to a great many people - it is harmless. Chronic heartburn is called reflux disease. Here the lower sections of the esophagus are severely inflamed from regular contact with stomach acid.

Diet and lifestyle habits play an important role as the cause of persistent heartburn and reflux disease:

  • High-fat, spicy foods, chocolate, alcohol and citrus fruits increase the production of stomach acid. They are therefore better to be avoided.
  • Nicotine and alcohol cause the sphincter muscle at the stomach entrance to relax. Refraining from smoking and alcohol helps here.
  • Lying down flat right after eating or being overweight increases the gastric acid reflux. Depending on the cause, this can be remedied by normalizing the weight, avoiding late, lavish meals and lying and sleeping with the upper body elevated.

Therapy with medication can alleviate heartburn, but does not change its causes: Antacids neutralize stomach acid, proton pump inhibitors block its production. The specialist diagnosis clarifies which measures are the most promising in individual cases. This often includes an endoscopy of the stomach and esophagus.


Dr. med. Arne Schäffler; Dr. med. Brigitte Strasser-Vogel; Section "Your pharmacy recommends": Dr. med. Arne Schäffler; Miriam Knauer | last changed on at 09:43