Swallowing Difficulty

General signs may include:

  • Coughing during or right after eating or drinking
  • Wet or gurgly sounding voice during or after eating or drinking
  • Extra effort or time needed to chew or swallow
  • Food or liquid leaking from the mouth or getting stuck in the mouth
  • Recurring pneumonia or chest congestion after eating
  • Weight loss or dehydration from not being able to eat enough

Complications:

  • Poor nutrition or dehydration with weight loss
  • Risk of aspiration which can lead to pneumonia and chronic lung disease
  • Less enjoyment or even fear of eating or drinking
  • Embarrassment or isolation in situations involving eating

The causes of swallowing disorders in:

Adults

Adults

Damage to the nervous system, such as:
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
  • Muscular Dystrophy
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Alzheimer's Disease
  • Stroke
  • Brain Injury
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Parkinson's Disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Dementia
Infant

Infants & Children

  • Cleft lip/palate
  • Developmental Disability
  • The RoseCup system is not currently suitable for use in babies

Problems affecting the head and neck, including:

  • Cancer in the mouth, throat or esophagus
  • Injury or surgery involving the head and neck
  • Decayed or missing teeth, or poorly fitting dentures

Early diagnosis

An estimated 75% of cases are un-diagnosed. Early diagnosis allows for rehabilitation before complications make rehabilitation increasingly difficult.

Speech Pathologists have a pivotal role in the assessment and management of Dysphagia.

It is recommended that any person who knows or suspect they have a swallowing disorder should contact a local Speech Pathologist that specialise in Dysphagia, to assist them to evaluate their swallowing and perform special tests necessary for assessments and screenings.

References:

The RoseCup has been developed in Australia and is a TGA registered, Class 1 Medical Device. It has been designed to assist with access to nutrition and hydration for anyone struggling with feeding and swallowing or who has been diagnosed with dysphagia.