What Are Causes of Choking on Saliva?

Some possible causes of choking on saliva are hypersalivation, dysphagia and certain types of neurological conditions. Some very common causes for hypersalivation can be due to eating spicy or sour foods or taking certain medications. Overproduction of saliva also may be associated health problems, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, states the ALS Association.

Excessive salivation is a symptom linked to certain other health conditions, such as Bell's palsy, rabies or cerebral palsy, according to WebMD. However, other causes can be salivary glands that produce too much saliva. Medications, such as seizure or schizophrenia drugs, can also be responsible for this symptom. Drooling is another symptom linked to hypersalivation.

Another reason for hypersalivation is dysphagia or swallowing problems that are caused by a variety of conditions. Swallowing problems may be due to gastroesophageal reflux disease in which acid from the stomach moves up to the esophagus. A tumor or trauma to the throat or esophagus can present the symptom of choking on saliva.

Excess saliva is also a symptom of some neurological disorders, such as Parkinson's disease and muscular dystrophy, states Mayo Clinic. Stroke sufferers can also have dysphagia and may choke on either food, liquids or saliva.

Treatment options for hypersalivation is dependent on its specific cause. However, it may be treated with medications, Botox injections and surgery in some cases. For someone with ALS who has this symptom, some possible medications are amitriptyline and scopolamine, according to the ALS Association.