Swallowing Awareness Day: dysphagia and mental health

Posted by Devon Partnership Trust in Mental health, News on 14th March, 2018

Dysphagia (difficulty or discomfort in swallowing) can affect people at any stage of their lives and many mental health conditions have dysphagia associated with them - this may be an intrinsic part of the disorder or a side effect of medication.

Did you know?

  • There is a greater prevalence of dysphagia in acute and community mental health settings compared to the general population.
  • There is evidence for an elevated rate of death due to choking in acute mental health settings, partly due to the effects of medication.
  • The risk of death due to choking in people with schizophrenia has been reported as 30 times more likely than in the general population.
  • The National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA) has identified dysphagia as a significant health risk for people with learning disabilities. Dysphagia can result in choking and may lead to death.

Find out more on the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists website here.

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