Clearing your throat may seem like an innocent bodily function, but if you’re doing so consistently, it’s time to investigate the habit and treat it. Knowing the underlying cause of chronic throat cleaning allows for prompt intervention and management.
Reasons for Throat-Clearing
There is an array of potential causes for why you could be clearing your throat. Potential reasons include:
- Acid Reflux or GERD: This condition affects a significant portion of the population, with 20% of adults in the U.S. experiencing it. Symptoms can include the feeling of something lodged in the throat, ongoing soreness or a burning sensation.
- Food Allergies: Specific foods like dairy, eggs, rice and soy can irritate the throat, leading to repeated throat clearing.
- Medication Side Effects: Certain medications can cause an itchy sensation in the throat, resulting in a need for continuous throat clearing.
- Postnasal Drainage: Overproduction of mucus, triggered by allergies, colds, flu, infections, spicy foods or weather changes, can lead to constant throat clearing.
- Tourette’s Syndrome: People with Tourette’s Syndrome may display various physical tics, including frequent throat clearing.
Management Strategies for Throat Clearing
For those dealing with constant throat clearing, it’s important to investigate symptom management options to protect your vocal cords. Besides staying hydrated and managing conditions like acid reflux, you might also need to:
- Suppress the Urge: Try to resist the impulse to clear your throat by sipping water or swallowing hard. This practice can help protect the vocal cords.
- Avoid Voice Irritation: Give your voice a rest, avoid smoking and address allergy symptoms promptly to prevent further irritation.
- Treat Mucus Causes: Seek advice from a healthcare professional about appropriate medications from Mears Pharmacy to control mucus production triggered by illnesses or allergies.
To protect your throat health, effective symptom identification and management is key. Consider scheduling an appointment at South Valley Ear Nose & Throat if you’ve experienced persistent throat clearing or have other ear, nose or throat related issues.