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cancer of the tongue

Posts: 44
Joined: Jun 2008

altho it's been 5 years since my treatment,I still have problems.Its very hard for me to swallow my food and of course my saliva glands are shot.My big concern since I am a widow and live alone is tht one day I will choke and that will be the end.Any suggestions that would help would be appreciated.I always have some thing to drink near by.Sometimes I think I need new dentures.Yesterday I took my top dentures out and found I could swallow better.That made me think that it is a big part of my problem.Lot's of things I still can't eat.Am open for all suggestions.....

soccerfreaks's picture
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

I wish I could help, but I'm a relative rookie in comparison to you and so must assume that you have tried all of the things I am familiar with.

A little more knowledge about the nature of your surgery and what you are now eating might help us to help you.

In the meantime, the bit about the dentures is interesting. I would have thought the opposite, as one of my big issues is food getting stuck on the roof of my mouth.

Anyway, be advised you are not alone. Two and a half years into this, I am still experimenting, dicing and slicing and brothing and souping and ice creaming it to find things that work. I have had some success, but I now consider hamburger commercials borderline pornography :).

Take care.


stevelfun's picture
Posts: 17
Joined: Dec 2007

They have speech/swallow therapists.... They really can/do help. Not without exercise though. Maybe a visit to one of these - perhaps a barium swallow test to 'see' what is not happening correctly.

Couldn't hurt.

I worked really hard during my treatments with the exercises. I had heard that the 'stronger' you were - the quicker the recovery post-treatment.

I too occasionally choke on something and share your fear. Cut things up, lots of water, chew the heck out of it, etc.... Learned the hard way one day trying to eat an apple like I used to.

SASH's picture
Posts: 399
Joined: Apr 2006

An add on to the speech pathologists that help with swallowing there are some that have taken additional testing and specialize in swallowing. You can see if there are any in your area by going to http://www.swallowingdisorders.org.

I'm over 8 years out after treatment for Stage 4 Tongue cancer. I do have some issues with eating and swallowing. There are times that food gets caught and I have learned that I can stick my fingers down my throat and pull food out if needed. This isn't necessarily the best way of dealing with this problem but it works for me. The smaller the bite the less likely it is to get caught but it is possible. It is always good if you have a way of dealing with this if you are alone just in case.

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