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I feel something stuck in my chest: causes and treatment

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Strange sensations in the chest area often cause distress and concern. This is because it contains important organs like the heart and lungs, but do you really need to worry that much?

We must tell you that it is important that you go to a medical consultation. Although the chances of it being a serious problem are very small, certain diseases such as gastroesophageal reflux, a heart problem or a lung infection require medical intervention.

If you feel something stuck in your chest and you are interested in knowing the causes that can originate it and their respective treatments, continue reading this article by FastlyHeal .

Gastroesophageal reflux

It is about the rise of acid and content from the stomach upwards . You may feel that something rises to the throat, bad taste in the mouth, bad breath, hoarseness, cough, cold or frequent nose and ear infections, asthma, nausea, among others.

It is a very common problem nowadays due to unhealthy eating and non-eating habits. Among the mistakes that many people make that promote reflux are:

  • Eating too much.
  • Eat fast and restless.
  • Lie down immediately after eating.
  • Combining food improperly.
  • Eating a large quantity of foods that are difficult to digest such as: meat, dairy products, refined flours.
  • Eat fruit after your meal.
  • Drink liquids with food.
  • Consume carbonated or carbonated drinks.
  • Smoke tobacco.
  • Consume alcohol in excess.

What to do?

You can focus on relieving symptoms with antacids or change your habits and find real relief.

Exercising and promoting relaxation can also help improve digestion.

You can learn more about this condition in more detail by consulting the article Gastroesophageal reflux: causes, symptoms and treatment .

Stress or anxiety

Emotions can often be felt in the body. It is a fairly common evil for someone to have a bodily sensation without perceiving that it is actually an emotion that causes that physical sensation. Palpitations, a choking sensation, a pressure in the pit of the stomach or having something stuck in the chest may be due to unidentified feelings such as sadness, anxiety, fear or anguish.

It is common for this to happen from time to time and in front of some stimulus that puts the body on alert, but when it becomes something everyday it can be really harmful. Keeping the body on permanent alert generates the release of substances, such as adrenaline, that put the body in extreme attention and tension, which causes countless diseases if not corrected in time.

What to do?

Therefore, if you think that what you are feeling may be due to an emotional state or is causing you anxiety, do not hesitate to seek help . A friend or family member or professional can help you understand what is happening and can help you find your way out.

Identifying what you feel is a big step. Understanding it, accepting it and channeling it may be the solution.

Allergy and asthma

Some people may suffer from inflammation and react inappropriately to substances that are harmless to others. Among the various allergy symptoms, there may be a cough, a choking sensation, nasal and pulmonary secretions, congestion, sneezing .

It can manifest itself at any time, at a specific time of the year or when exercising. This depends on the cause and severity of the problem. It can be increased by: eating super-processed foods, consumption of refined foods (such as rice, flour or white sugar), excess dairy products, being in contact with irritants, gastroesophageal reflux and poor digestion, among others.


Depending on the severity, it may be indicated:

  • Local anti-inflammatory treatments with corticosteroid sprays and airway dilators.
  • Oral medication that pursues the same purposes.

You should know that this medication calms symptoms and reduces inflammation when it already occurs, so it is best to treat the cause directly and improve body imbalances. This can be achieved with a healthy diet, good rest, and avoiding things that cause irritation.

Vaccine therapies can be performed, but that does not reduce the excessive reaction, but rather they accustom the body to the substances to which it reacts.

Lung diseases

viral or bacterial infection can cause a cough, phlegm, chest pain, fever, and also the feeling that something is stuck in the chest.

The chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) disease , chronic bronchitis, bronchiectasis, among other diseases, can also generate feeling of tightness or that there is something stuck in his chest.


Rest, rest, drinking water and a healthy diet are the bases for a speedy recovery.

Sometimes, antibiotics and anti-inflammatories may be necessary, which will depend on the cause and the person’s condition or if they suffer from other diseases.


It is the difficulty in swallowing , which can be accompanied by pain when swallowing, feeling short of breath , among others. This difficulty occurs with solids or also with liquids.

It can be caused by different diseases, such as:

  • Gastroesophageal reflux.
  • Pharyngeal or esophageal inflammation.
  • Esophageal diverticulum.
  • Neurological problems, such as Parkinson’s or multiple sclerosis.
  • Emotional problems, such as depression.
  • Lack of adequate salivation.
  • Radiation therapy to the area.


Depending on the cause, the treatment will focus one way or another. Correcting unhealthy habits will always be beneficial.

Drugs can be prescribed to treat the specific health problem and also help reduce inflammation for a short time with natural anti-inflammatory products, such as turmeric and ginger.

Strange body

This can be considered if the sensation that something is stuck in the chest started after a choking or the ingestion of some food that could leave residues (such as fish bones).

What to do?

Undoubtedly, it is a reason to consult the emergency room, since if the foreign body is in the airway it can become a serious health situation. At the health center, the situation and its severity will be evaluated, the person will be reviewed and, if necessary and possible, an X-ray will be performed.

Consultation with specialists in gastroenterology, otorhinolaryngology or pulmonology may be required depending on the case to carry out the extraction of the foreign body.

Muscle contracture

If you have been doing exercises or efforts out of the ordinary, it is possible that that feeling that there is something stuck in the chest could be due to a muscle contracture. It can cause a feeling of imprisonment and even shortness of breath when trying to inhale deeply.

You may also feel pain when touching the area and more discomfort when trying to turn, sit up, or move your arms or back.


Rest and the application of local heat are key. You can take an anti-inflammatory if the pain is very important, but if the discomfort does not subside, worsens or you have other symptoms, such as shortness of breath, fever or a lot of depression, do not hesitate to consult one or a medical professional.

Heart problems

Acute heart problems, such as a heart attack , or chronic, such as an arrhythmia , can generate the most varied sensations in the chest and nearby areas (such as the neck or left limb). Shortness of breath, abrupt tiredness, nausea, pain, and choking can all be signs that something abnormal is happening.

It is more common in people over 45 years of age, who suffer from obesity or other disorders such as diabetes or hypertension.

What to do?

If you think that may be your case, it is better to act quickly. It is very likely that it is not something serious, but going to a medical consultation will leave you with more peace of mind.

When you receive a doctor or a doctor will ask you questions, review you and perform studies such as an electrocardiogram (to see the functioning of the heart) and blood tests, as required.


During pregnancy, the womb grows significantly, especially in the last months this can make you feel pressure in the abdomen, pelvis and also the chest .

It can cause sensations such as shortness of breath, reflux or that something is stuck. This is usually especially noticeable when you go to bed or after eating.

What can you do?

Being patient and understanding what is going on can help you stay calm. You can take some simple habits so that the sensation is not as bothersome as:

  • Eat in small amounts.
  • Eat early dinner: eating light meals for the last time of the day until 7:00 p.m. and allowing time for digestion before going to bed will be of great help.
  • Avoid eating foods that are difficult to digest such as meats, flour and refined, processed.
  • Do not drink carbonated or artificial drinks. Water and fruit juices are better.
  • Practice deep breaths for about 20 minutes a day, sitting in a comfortable position. This will help improve your lung capacity, properly oxygenate your body and will facilitate much-needed relaxation.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to I feel something stuck in my chest: causes and treatment , we recommend that you enter our Lung and respiratory tract category .

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