Life After Cancer Treatment: Managing Trouble Swallowing

Some people who have had radiation therapy or chemotherapy may find it hard to eat because they have trouble swallowing. People who have had radiation therapy to the head, neck, breast, or chest or those who have had surgery involving the larynx may also have this problem.

Getting Help

  • Eat soft, bland foods moistened with sauces or gravies. Puddings, ice cream, soups, applesauce, and bananas and other soft fruits are nourishing and usually easy to swallow.
  • Use a blender to process solid foods.
  • Ask for advice from your health care team, including your doctor, nurse, nutritionist, and/or speech pathologist.
  • Tilt your head back or move it forward while you are eating.
  • Have a sip of water every few minutes to help you swallow and talk more easily. Carry a water bottle with you so you always have some handy.

Retrieved from https://www.cancer.gov/publications/patient-education/life-after-treatme... June 5, 2018.

Document source: 
National Cancer Institute
Audience: