Lump in the Throat (Globus Sensation): Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment
Lump in throat, also known as globus sensation, is a feeling of having something stuck in your throat even if is not physically present.
In such cases, people tend to drink a lot of fluid to make sure that the lump goes down the throat.
In some cases, the lump may feel as big as a tennis ball or as small as a pill, situated in the middle of the neck, right below Adam’s apple. It may not be painful, but the person experiencing it feels annoyed and irritated.
There can be multiple reasons for the occurrence of a lump in the throat.
Warning Signs of Lump in Throat
Before any illness, our body shows us some signs. You shouldn’t ignore these signs as it may lead to severe complications. Lump in throat also has signs that should be considered and recognized to prevent it from worsening.
Some of the main warning signs of the bump in the throat include:
- Tightness in the throat
- Feeling of something stuck inside after eating
- Lump in throat in the thyroid area
- Anxiety lump in throat
- Feeling as if something is tied around your throat
- Lump in the throat feeling remains constant
- The lump in throat comes and goes
- Lump in the throat after swallowing
- Feeling of choking
- Feeling as if something is blocking the throat or airway
- Weight loss
- Neck or throat pain
What Causes Lump in Throat?
There can be numerous reasons behind any uneasiness in your body like the lump in the throat. The doctors are still not sure about the exact causes, and it can happen to people of any age groups or gender.
Some of the main reasons that lead to lump in the throat are:
1. Muscle Tension
Your throat muscles relax when you aren’t swallowing or talking. If you do not relax them, you may feel more pressure in that area than usual. It may make you get the feeling of a lump or bump in your throat.
2. Lack of Muscle Coordination
A synchronized contraction and relaxation of throat muscles ease the process of swallowing the food. If this coordination of the muscles is disturbed, you may feel tightness in your throat muscles.
It leads to the feeling of a bump in the throat. It is most noticeable while swallowing saliva. The disturbed synchronization makes swallowing uneasy and shows you the coming of the lump in the throat.
3. Acid Reflux
Sometimes the stomach acid gets pushed up in the esophagus. It causes swelling in the throat which may give lump in the throat feeling. It also increases the tension in the muscles and aggravates the sensation.
4. Postnasal Drip
The mucus from the nose can accumulate at the back of the throat. This condition is called postnatal drip. It causes excessive tension in the throat and leads to the uneasy feeling.
5. Emotional Reactions
Emotions can play a significant role in aggravating this uneasy feeling. Stress, fatigue, and anxiety can cause the muscles to tense up and lead to uneasiness in the throat. Stress and fatigue, if not managed well, can worsen the situation.
These causes should be prevented to avoid lump in the throat feeling.
White Lump in the Throat
White lump in the throat is called tonsil stones. The white spots on your tonsils are not harmful but give you bad breath. The lumps are actually the debris collected in the pocket of your tonsils.
These do not cause any pain if they are soft. The soft stones break down on their own, and you may also swallow them unconsciously at times. But if they harden up or occur frequently then it is better to get your tonsils removed.
Treatments for Lump in Throat
Globus sensation has no defined treatments because of its vague causes which are not adequately examined and proved. If you feel a lump in the throat often, you should know a few treatments to get relief.
It is a common problem which won’t harm your health, but it may cause a lot of unrest. Some of the causes of globus sensation are treatable. Here’s how to treat them:
1. Nasal spray
The nasal sprays are the best options to treat postnasal drip. Drinking plenty of fluid can help keep the secretions thin and mobile in nature. Few decongestants also assist in removing the build-up and the drip
Lump in the throat caused due to stress, depression, anxiety, and fatigue can be treated using therapies like talk therapy or antidepressants. Eat small meals every two or three hours to reduce some stress. Aromatherapy or essential oils like lemon oil or lavender oil can help to reduce stress. Essential oils are also helpful to fight coughing and other throat infections.
Antacids and prescription reflux medications can help get relief from acid reflux. It helps calm down the burning sensation.
Swallowing the saliva may make you feel the lump in the throat. Eating and keeping your throat active for a while may ease the unpleasant feeling. It keeps the throat muscles active and reduces the tension that has built up because of the lack of activity.
How to Prevent Globus Sensation or Lump in the Throat Feeling?
Prevention is always better than cure, and especially if you don’t know the causes. Following are some prevention techniques to get rid of the lump in throat feeling.
1. Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking fluids will help you ease the tension in your throat created by acid reflux. Water keeps the throat active and keeps the fluid and secretions moving in your body.
2. Avoid Smoking
Smoking can worsen the lump in the throat feeling. It affects your throat and sinuses. So avoiding the addiction can help you a lot in preventing the lump in throat and make you feel better.
3. Avoid Straining Your Throat Muscles When Sick
Resting the muscles of your throat is very important when you suffer from illnesses such as cold or laryngitis. During such illnesses, the muscles in the throat are already inflamed. Not providing them enough rest can cause irreversible damage.
4. Avoid Shouting
Avoid shouting continuously. Shouting stresses your throat muscles and can worsen the situation. Keep as calm as possible to make it heal faster and prevent unnecessary complications.
When to See a Doctor?
Globus sensation is not a serious problem, and there is nothing to worry about it. You don’t need frequent doctor visits to treat it.
You should seek a professional medical advice if the lump persists for few days and shows other symptoms like extreme difficulty in swallowing. It is important to look into the accompanying symptoms carefully to decide whether to visit a doctor or not.
After a proper diagnosis, your doctor may refer you to an ear, nose, and throat specialist (or ENT specialist). The ENT specialist will not confirm a globus sensation diagnosis but will rule out the other causes of it.
Seeing a doctor is advisable only in adverse conditions and in the above case of accompanying symptoms. Otherwise, it is not necessary to worry about the lump in the throat.