You (or your child) has an abrasion (scratch) of the back of the throat (pharynx). This can be caused by swallowing a sharp piece of food such as a bone, snack chip, or bread crust, or other sharp or abrasive object.
For a day or so, it may continue to feel like something is stuck in the throat. It may also hurt to swallow. Symptoms should start to get better as the abrasion heals.
A small object that is stuck in the throat, such as a fish bone or food particle, may be hard to see on tests. Be sure to get medical attention if symptoms get worse or if new symptoms appear such as choking, coughing, or trouble swallowing.
If swallowing is painful, have liquids and soft foods until it gets better.
Gargling with warm salt water (1/2 teaspoon of table salt dissolved in 8 ounces of warm water) may help soothe a sore throat. Spit out the solution. Don't swallow it. Make sure that children don't swallow the solution.
Over-the-counter (OTC) medicines such as acetaminophen, naproxen, or ibuprofen can help ease throat pain. Call your healthcare provider before taking these OTC medicines, especially when giving them to children for the first time.
Sucking on cough drops or hard candies may also help soothe the throat. Don't give these to children under 4 years old.
Follow up with your healthcare provider, or as advised.
Call your healthcare provider if any of the following occur:
Fever of 100.4°F (38ºC) or higher , or as directed by the healthcare provider
Throat pain that worsens or doesn't get better
Inability to open the mouth wide due to pain
Inability to eat or drink, or refusal to eat or drink
Increased pain with neck movement
Nausea or vomiting
Call 911 or get immediate medical care if any of the following occur:
Trouble breathing, noisy breathing, or a muffled voice
Trouble swallowing, choking, or other symptoms that may indicate worsening welling in the throat
Bloody bowel movements or vomiting blood
© 2000-2020 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.