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  • in reply to: Learning to swallow again after choking #4770

    Hi everyone.

    I was reading your forum after reading thousand of them before and you guys inspired me to register myself and join the discussion as I feel I have some things to say.

    Well I’m 24 years old and 2 years ago I have developed swallowing phobia due to anxiety.. I always suffered anxiety since I was younger but 2years ago anxiety changed my life. Anyways, I couldn’t eat anything as I was afraid that I am going to choke to death.. I had several panic attacks.

    Only thing on my safe list was liquidised soup.. Sometimes I also refused to drink… So obviously ive lost 15kg and I was looking like an anorexia. I refused to go out with my friends and I ended up being unsociable and deep down knowing my family are super worried about me.. I also refused Xmas lunch with family. I preferred staying home instead of trying to eat.

    As some of you said, three steps forward and two steps back…

    I am not going to tell you what are the food which I couldn’t eat or which were the food I use to fear of as not everyone is the same and I dont want someone to become conscious about a food which is on your safe list.

    Today, 2 years after I eat everything except my very favourite food beef.. That is my only food type I need to overcome and I will.

    I started eating small portions.. And every time I eat I become anxious and a panic attack feeling start to arise.. But hey I got use to that feeling and nothing ever really happened.. So this one day I sat on a table… Alone.. And I ate chicken kebab with couscous.. I ate slowly and every time I start to panic I talk to myself.. ( “I use to eat everything before” , ” I am a warrior ” my mind is trying to fool myself “)… Chicken became on my safe list… And until that feeling of panic stops, I eat chicken everyday until my body is not anxious anymore for eating it.. Hey its not easy as it seems.. I still had fears… But the big step is facing my fear ! So when that feeling of fear arises, I fight it and eat otherwise.. Talking to my brain.

    I did the same for other food.. And yea I tried to eat beef but my body still become anxious when I eat it.. So for now I focus on staying stable.

    Until u actually face the fear you will never get out from it.. In my opinion. I started facing my fear a year after… And year after I’m here today still alive and eating..

    I dont rush to eat. I eat very slowly (before I was slower) and if there is something that u dont like, get it out from ur mouth… And if the people around you finish before you and u start to panic, remind urself that you are eating and stay positive. I use to panic cause people around me finish before me and waiters take out their plates and there I am eating alone like an idiot.. Ive been there and trust me I felt like an idiot a couple of times but I overcome it too..I use and still do fill my mouth with food and moving it to the back and front until my mind tell me… Ok u can swallow now ! And yea I am still conscious about my mouth when I eat but there is no fear until today.

    I also went to see a physiologist I was her first and only client who suffered swallowing phobia so it was new for her too. She is so nice and kind. At that time I use to go 3 times a week ! I was devastated. Year after, I go once a month.. She told me I dont need her anymore but I still go once a month.

    I saw some post here of someone seeing a deaf physiologist and not being comfortable. In my opinion, I would change her.. U need to trust her and gain a kind of relationship with her so she can help you to overcome your fear.. Otherwise its useless.. Its a pity for her as she will be losing her client, but think for urself too and I’m sure she will understand.

    In my opinion, dont hang on to the safe list… Face the fear… Your mind will get use to it and u will settle..

    I have so many things I would like to say to help you all trust me but I already wrote a lot ( I wish I use to write this much in my school compositions 😉 )

    I hope I didn’t offend anyone here or got me wrong.

    This is my first time ever that I am writing in a forum as I always thought they are negative stuff.. But you people here are sooo close to overcome it and you people are positive thinkers too and I like that.

    Hope all is well 🙂

    Thank you for reading and hearing me out.

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