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Something Stuck in Throat: How To Get It Out and What You Need To Do

Medically reviewed by Jezreel Esguerra, MD · General Practitioner

Written by Jan Alwyn Batara · Updated Feb 23, 2023

Something Stuck in Throat: How To Get It Out and What You Need To Do

In cases where people have something stuck in throat, how to get it out is a top priority. This is because it can quickly become a choking hazard, as well as cause damage and irritation to a person’s throat, especially when it happens to a child.

But what exactly should you do if you have something stuck in throat, or when it happens to someone else? Here’s what you need to know.

Something Stuck in Throat: How To Get It Out

Have you ever had something stuck in throat? It can happen if you swallow your food too fast, or in the case of children, they accidentally swallow a toy or an object they put in their mouth.

While these situations usually cause some discomfort, they can quickly lead to more dangerous situations especially if it happens to a child or an elderly person.

Thankfully, there are a number of ways to deal with somethings stuck in throat. However, note that identifying the object blocking the throat is crucial. Batteries and magnets, for instance, need to be removed IMMEDIATELY, hence, the need for emergency care. You must also exercise extra caution for sharp and long objects.

Here are some things that you can try at home:

Drink soda

A surprisingly effective way of dealing with food stuck in throat is to drink soda. In fact, there is a study available to help us understand just how effective it would be. The research found that in about 80% of the cases they studied, drinking soda was an effective solution.

They theorized that the carbonation helped loosen the food in the throat. This is because the air bubbles can help move the food around and make it go down easier. The carbonation also creates gases in the stomach, which can help push out food that’s stuck in the throat.

Water also works

Similarly, drinking water also works with food stuck in the throat. Water can help wash down the food, and it also lubricates the throat, making it easier for food to pass through.

It is important to remember that drinking water, as well as drinking soda, are not recommended if a person accidentally swallowed an object. This is because it is better to take out the object instead of letting it go to the stomach.

something stuck in throat how to get it out

Eat a soft piece of food

This is also another remedy for food stuck in the throat. Eating a softer piece of food, such as a banana, can help push the food that’s stuck in your throat. This may or may not work, depending on how big the blockage is.

Perform the necessary first aid procedures

If the above steps are not working, or if an object was swallowed, here’s what you can do as first aid:

  1. Give the person 5 blows to the back with the heel of your hand. It should be roughly in between the shoulder blades
  2. Perform 5 abdominal thrusts or commonly known as the Heimlich maneuver
  3. Alternate between the two steps until you remove the blockage
  4. Here are the steps to the Heimlich maneuver:

    1. Stand behind the person, wrap your arms around them, and place your hands above their bellybutton
    2. Clench one of your hands into a fist, and hold it tight with the other hand
    3. Thrust upwards and inwards into the person’s belly. Make sure to do this fast

    These techniques are especially useful if the blockage is not removed, and the person is having difficulty breathing.

    If all else fails, go to the ER immediately

    If the above steps don’t work, then call emergency services, or take the person to the ER as soon as possible. It’s not a good idea to waste time trying to remove the object when you’ve already exhausted all of the methods that you can do. So it would be best to call for help immediately, and try to keep the person who is choking calm and awake.

    If a child is choking on a battery or an object that can be dangerous, it would also be a good idea to take them to the hospital immediately. This way, you can minimize and deal with any possible injury or problems immediately.

    Learn more about Throat Conditions here


    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Medically reviewed by

    Jezreel Esguerra, MD

    General Practitioner

    Written by Jan Alwyn Batara · Updated Feb 23, 2023

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