Ataxia UK
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What can my 'ataxian' friend do about her choking problem

My 'Ataxian' friend has recently experienced very frightening choking to the point that she thought she was dying Her doctor was little or no help. I suggested that she contacted her specialist and also I have heard that there are nurses who can help with this problem although I am not sure who or where these nurses are I live in Berkshire and she lives in Hampshire so unfortunately I am little or no use. She lives on her own which must be even more frightening Any help or advise would be very much appreciated

All the best Ted

5 Replies

I started having choking episodes last year and I was referred to a speach therapist who advised on diet what foods to avoid etc hope that helps


Many thanks gossy I will pass on your advise to my friend Did you do this through your G.P

as my friends Doctor doesn't seem to be very helpful I would have thought she should contact her Ataxian nurse always assuming she has got one!!

Cheers Ted


my son experiences this at time, speech and language just advice about sitting in the correct posture while eating, don't have too much in your mouth, drink slowly, if happens often advice may be given to thicken up drinks, my son now has a feeding tube, he still eats but not as much.


I saw a speech therapist, as I've experienced choking episodes also. She suggested dropping my chin down (toward chest) when swallowing liquids, as well as taking extremely small bites of food, chewing well and taking small sips of water in between. Eating and drinking SLOWLY is extremely important. Also, as others have said, a speech therapist can advise on foods to eat, as well as thickeners for liquids, etc...,;o)


Hello I have terrible problems with choking not just food but liquids too. I have had 3 lots of speech therapy for my speech and the choking, I have to do daily exercises to strengthen the muscles so the swallowing can improve which it has so give it a try. Good luck.


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