Why does my throat hurt when i yawn and swallow?

We’ve all been there – you yawn or swallow, and suddenly your throat feels like it’s on fire. What gives? In this article, we’ll explore the various reasons why your throat might be hurting when you do these simple bodily functions.

The Mechanics of Yawning and Swallowing

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of why your throat hurts during these activities, let’s take a quick look at what actually happens when you yawn or swallow.

The Yawning Process

Yawning is an involuntary reflex that involves opening up your mouth wide as if you’re taking a big bite out of something. As your mouth opens, so does your pharynx (the part of your throat behind your nose and mouth), allowing more air to flow in.

The Swallowing Process

Swallowing is a bit more complicated than yawning. It starts with the tongue pushing food or liquid towards the back of the mouth where it triggers some complex movements in the pharynx:

  1. Soft palate closes off nasal passage.
  2. Larynx rises to close off airway.
  3. Esophageal sphincter relaxes to allow food or liquid to enter stomach.

Now that we understand how they work, let’s dig into some possible reasons for why things might go wrong!

Acid Reflux Disease

If acid reflux disease is causing pain during swallowing, then chances are good that it will also cause pain when yawning in many cases too! This condition occurs when stomach acid flows upwards from the digestive tract and into esophagus – essentially eating away at those tiny tissues along its path as well as affecting nerves within them which lead on towards other body parts such as nearest brain hence causing heaviness or pressure after eating resulting in burping .

Common Cold/Seasonal Allergies

When you have a cold or seasonal allergies such as hay fever, it’s not uncommon to experience throat pain when yawning and swallowing. This is because the inflammation brought on by these conditions often causes swelling and soreness in your nasal passages, pharynx, and larynx areas.

For symptoms related to allergies consult with medical professionals for proper treatment.


Your body needs hydration to function effectively; without water or fluids, muscles become stiff and weak due to lack of proper communication between them which can also lead towards painful situations such as throat hurting after yawning. Because saliva helps lubricate our oral cavity alongside some other digestive processes like secretions from various glands existing inside our mouth so if we are dehydrated enough then that results in dry mouth/throat making sure any action involving movements here will be uncomfortable or possibly hurtful


Pharyngitis is an infection of the pharynx caused by bacteria/virus (strep etc.) or irritation resulting mostly from inhalation damaging chemical compounds/contaminants . It may cause pain while breathing in deeply, coughing/sneezing/yawning since stretching of muscles involve coupled reactions creating pressure changes within tissue layer around affected area leading onto unpleasant sensations like burning feeling present during yawn & swallow cycles

Also harsh coughing could increase certain instances causing more severe pain upon completion of different movement patterns

Dry Air/Irritants

Skin surface membranes normally secrete mucus quite actively keeping surrounding environments moist/oilized/protected against external factors allowing for comfortable breaths/swallows until disbalance occurs either through insufficient amounts/exposure periodical improper substances . These dynamic barriers most protective when balanced getting rid unwanted stuff but extreme weather especially low humidity levels production levels decrease along escalating presence harmful pollutants further lowering capacity protective layer leaving open space towards further deterioration including irritations witnessed during aforementioned activities like yawning/swallowing

Tonsil Stones

Tonsil stones are small, calcified deposits that form in the pockets of your tonsils naturally – they’re not harmful on their own but can cause annoying and painful symptoms such as throat soreness when yawning or swallowing. These pesky little guys typically arise due to trapped food particles plus bacteria eventually hardening overtime blocking regular flushes which could expel them out instead accumulating till it becomes noticeable.

Muscle Strain

Finally, one of the most common reasons for throat pain during yawning is simply muscle strain. Overusing those muscles too frequently in a repetitive motion may cause some organ fatigue normally following minutes/hours period giving obvious subsequent reaction after employing same pattern again & again e.g excessive tension directly into upward jaw lift causing strains/incidents until some meaningful rest/treatment applied allowing gradual healing towards full recovery

Throat pain upon yawn/swallow isn’t an uncommon complaint by any means. It might be caused by acid reflux disease, seasonal allergies/cold dehydration pharyngitis dry conditions/irritants tonsil stones even something as simple as muscular strain can happen over time while ignoring suggesting to take action bringing relief incrementally so we advise seeking medical attention should this continue beyond reasonable expectation . By recognizing these signs/symptoms understanding what’s behind each problem treating accordingly (or more likely prevention) taking necessary measures maintaining healthy lifestyle habits you’ll effectively manage experience anytime someone asks why my throat hurts when I yawn and swallow?

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