I am a speech pathologist in the medical setting and we work with patients who have swallowing problems. The thyroid is around the larynx, and in basic terms, the larynx rises and falls during a swallow. This movement (along with other anatomical processes) is what allows the food and liquid to go down the esophagus into the stomach as opposed to down the trachea into the lungs (aka, "the wrong pipe").
So, when the larynx moves, in essence the thyroid rises and falls as well, as it surrounds the larynx. You may have read in these forums that some people complain of difficulty swallowing and wonder if it is related to a thyroid disorder (goiter or nodules, etc). I believe that since the thyroid is so near in proximity to the larynx, which helps us swallow effeciently, then yes, certain thyroid disorders could cause swallowing disorders (also known as dysphagia).
Sorry to be so long!
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