How to stop gagging

How to stop gagging

Few experiences are as unpleasant as gagging. Gagging can be caused by various things, including anxiety, a foreign object in the throat, or a medical condition. The sensation of throat constriction and the need to vomit can occur when you least expect it, and it can be difficult to stop once it starts. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to stop gagging and prevent it from happening again.

What is the gag reflex?

The gag reflex also called the pharyngeal reflex or laryngeal spasm, is a contraction of the back of the throat triggered by an object touching the roof of your mouth, the back of your tongue, the area around your tonsils, or your uvula — that little dangly thing at the back of your throat.

The gag reflex is a normal reflex that protects you from choking. It’sIt’s also responsible for making you throw up when you’re sick. The gag reflex is usually only triggered when something touches one of these sensitive areas in your mouth or throat.

In some cases, however, the gag reflex can be oversensitive. This can lead to gagging even when nothing touches your trigger areas.

Causes of the gag reflex

The gag reflex is a normal reflex that occurs when certain things touch the back of the throat. The reflex is there to protect the throat from foreign objects. However, sometimes the gag reflex can be overly sensitive and be triggered by things that are not harmful. This can be annoying and even painful. Let’sLet’s take a look at some things that can cause the gag reflex.

Anatomical causes

Several anatomical causes can lead to a person having a hypersensitive gag reflex. One such cause is having an excessively low palate. This means that the soft palate is lower than it should be, so the back of the throat is more exposed. This can make it more likely for items to trigger the gag reflex. Anatomical causes also include being born with a cleft palate. This congenital disability can make the soft palate abnormally shaped, increasing the likelihood of items triggering the gag reflex.

Psychological causes

Psychological causes of the gag reflex can include:

-Anxiety or nervousness: This may be caused by a fear of vomiting, choking, or another negative outcome.

-Psychological trauma: A history of trauma, such as child abuse or a traumatic event, can lead to a heightened gag reflex.

-Perfectionism: Some people may have a strong gag reflex because they are perfectionists and want to avoid making mistakes.

-Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD): People with OCD may have a strong gag reflex because they fear contamination or germs.

The gag reflex is usually nothing to worry about. However, if it is causing you distress or making it difficult to eat or drink, you may want to see a doctor or therapist who can help you address the underlying psychological causes.

How to stop gagging

Are you someone who gags easily? Are you gagging when brushing your teeth or trying to eat? If so, you are not alone. Many people gag easily, and it can be quite a nuisance. There are a few things that you can do to help stop the gagging.


One way to get over your gag reflex is to be gradually exposed to what triggers it. With enough exposure, your brain will stop perceiving the trigger as a threat, and the reflex will diminish or even disappear. This is called desensitization or habituation.

Here are some ways you can desensitize yourself to gagging:

-Start by looking at pictures or videos of things that make you gag. If that’s too much, start by looking at pictures of things that don’tdon’t make you gag. Slowly work your way up to more intense triggers.

-Once you’re ready, try watching someone else eat or drink something that makes you gag. If you can stomach that, try smelling it instead.

-When you’re ready, try touching your trigger food or object. Start with something innocuous like a straw or toothbrush, then gradually move on to more intense triggers like peanut butter or chicken skin.

-If touching your trigger food doesn’tdoesn’t make you gag, try taking a small bite out of it. Start with a very small amount and gradually increase the amount each day.

Relaxation techniques

There are a few things you can do to stop gagging. One is to relax your throat muscles. If your throat is tense, it is more likely to trigger your gag reflex. You can try a few relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing or progressive muscle relaxation.

Another thing you can do is to desensitize your gag reflex. This can be done by slowly introducing objects into your mouths, such as a spoon or a finger. Start with something small and gradually increase the object’s size over time. This will help your throat become used to objects in your mouth and lessen your gag reflex.

You can also try numbing your gag reflex. This can be done by swishing water in your mouth for a few minutes before you start another activity that may trigger your gag reflexes, such as brushing your teeth or gargling. You can also try sucking on ice chips or lozenges before starting an activity that may trigger your gag reflex.

Talk to your doctor or a speech therapist if you have trouble with your gag reflex. They can help you find ways to reduce or eliminate your gag reflex.


We hope that these techniques have helped you control your gag reflex. If your gagging interferes with your quality of life, you should consult a doctor or speech pathologist to find other techniques that may work better for you.