How to Remove a Fish Bone Stuck in Throat
Fishbone Stuck in Throat?
This is one of the most common fears among people who love eating fish. After all, we eat fish that taste good, regardless of what kind of bones they have. Of course we're careful, but sometimes, bones can be overlooked and swallowed, and get stuck.
What causes a bone to get stuck is a contraction of the throat muscles, which causes the bone to lodge itself in the wall of the throat. This can be painful and annoying, but it's not really something to worry about too much. You can either wait patiently and hope that the bone dislodges itself, go straight to the doctor, or do several things at home to help the bone move along.
If you don't want to rush to the emergency room, below you will find several things you can do yourself to get rid of that bone.
Is that a BONE stuck in my THROAT?
Having a bone stuck in your throat can be extremely uncomfortable. You will feel worried, irritated, and may even feel like vomiting (if you have a strong gag reflex). Other times, you may not notice it at all except when using your throat for certain things (like when you swallow). Sometimes you know exactly what happened right when you swallow, but other times it's hard to know for sure if there's a bone stuck in your throat or not.
If you're unsure, stand in front of a mirror or get some help from a friend. Use a flashlight to try to find the bone, if possible. Most of the time, it may not be possible since the bone might be located too deep in the throat.
Even if you're not entirely sure if there's a bone or not, or exactly where it's stuck, the methods described below should help you.
Methods for Removing Fish Bone from Throat
Try these methods only if there is no bleeding and the pain is bearable. Otherwise, a doctor’s care is the best way to go. I suggest using all these methods, again and again, in order to help dislodge that bone from your throat.
- Drink lots of water, preferably with a pinch of salt added. This can help dislodge a small fish bone.
- Swallow some solid food. Try small balls of boiled rice or bites of banana or bread. If that doesn't work, some say that eating something sticky and thick, like marshmallows or bread with peanut butter, might do the trick. The food may catch on the bone and pull it along down to your stomach.
- In China, they say that diluted vinegar will do the trick, soften the fish bone, and make it dissolve. Although the amount of acetic acid in the vinegar might be too little to soften the bone, it's worth a try.
- Folklore says to drink orange or lemon juice. The citric acid is believed to do the same trick of softening the bone.
- Some countries use olive oil. The oil will coat the throat and help the bone slide down. The oil will offer some soothing relief for the irritation, as well.
- Lastly, the “modern method” consists of drinking some bubbly soda.
Q: Will a fishbone hurt my stomach or intestines?
A: Don't worry. The acids in your stomach should be strong enough to dissolve the bone.
Bone in Throat: What NOT to Do
- Avoid coughing or straining your throat, as it might push the bone further into the esophagus.
- Never try inserting any object into your throat to remove the fishbone. That might work for a clogged sink, but this is different!
- Do not try to push or massage the throat externally with your hand, as the fish bone can get jammed.
- If none of these remedies work, and you can't dislodge the bone, don’t just suffer; go to a doctor to have it removed. Leaving a fishbone stuck in your throat for more than a day might result in infection.
- If your throat swells or becomes constricted, or if your breathing is impaired, don't wait, just go to the doctor.
I hope it worked! Be sure to check out the comment section below to see what methods worked for readers, and add your story to help others!