How Can Hoarseness Be Prevented
There are some easy ways to prevent a hoarse voice. You should practice them especially if you use your voice for professional reasons, particularly if thats every day. Try the following to help prevent hoarseness:
- Quit smoking. Stay away from second-hand smoke.
- Avoid alcohol and caffeine and other fluids that dehydrate your body.
- Drink plenty of water.
- A lump in your neck.
- No voice at all for more than a few days.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Your voice is one of the most important tools for communication, so its important to keep it working well. Hoarseness can be annoying or if you use your voice professionally distressing. Take care of your voice by drinking enough water, avoiding caffeine and smoking and using a microphone or other amplification tool if you need to speak loudly. Remember to see your healthcare provider if the hoarseness lasts three weeks.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 05/18/2021.
How About Laryngitis With Serious Vocal Fold Injury
Severe inflammation and swelling, hemorrhage in the vocal folds and mucosal disruption may occur with laryngitis and are contraindications to voice use. When these are observed, the treatment includes strict voice rest in addition to correction of any underlying disease. Vocal fold hemorrhage is most common in premenstrual women who are using aspirin products. Severe hemorrhage and mucosal scarring may result in permanent hoarseness. In some instances, surgical intervention may be necessary. The potential gravity of these conditions must be stressed so that patients understand the importance of complying with voice restrictions.
Singing With Hay Fever
Fighting hay fever can feel like an endless battle especially if youre a singer and its impacting your voice. But hay fever doesnt have to stop you singing. You can keep hoarse, congested tones at bay during allergy season with a few simple techniques:
- Detox clean living can boost your whole bodys immunity, and help your system stay strong against allergens. Try drinking 8 glasses of water a day and a diet of whole foods and vegetables to give your body a fighting chance.
- Warmup preparing your vocal cords for singing is always important, but its especially vital when youre suffering from allergies. A good vocal warmup can help relax and prepare your vocal cords.
- Steam set up your own steamer at home by filling a bowl with hot water, putting your face over it and covering your head with a towel. Inhale deeply for 5 10 minutes and youll feel your nasal passages clear. You may feel silly, but your voice will thank you!
- Nasal cleansing if you rinse out your sinuses every day, you can stop congestion in your airways building up.
- Air purifiers filters can be a lifesaver if you suffer from pollen allergies. HEPA filters and other air purifiers will keep your home free from allergens and help you sleep at night.
Don’t Miss: Best Air Purifier For Cat Allergies
Can Allergies Cause Hoarse Voice
Asked by: Filiberto McCullough
Allergies can affect your voice in several ways, and yes, they can even cause you to lose your voice. First, allergens themselves can irritate and enflame the vocal cords, which can cause hoarseness. Second, the congestion from a stuffed nose or postnasal drip can make it difficult to breathe easily.
How Is Hoarseness Diagnosed
Depending on your symptoms, your usual healthcare provider may refer you to an otolaryngologist or ENT . After getting your medical history and a list of your medications, your ENT may ask the following questions:
- How long have you had hoarseness?
- Did your symptoms start suddenly or come on gradually?
- Did you have a previous upper respiratory infection?
- Do you have other symptoms?
- How long have you been smoking?
- Do you drink alcohol?
After that, your ENT will want to listen to your voice and examine your head and neck. Theyll check for any lumps in your neck and examine your voice box using a laryngoscope, which is a lightened instrument that will be inserted into the back of your throat through your nostrils. If there is cause for concern, your healthcare provider may order the following tests:
You May Like: Best States For Allergies And Asthma
How Does The Voice Work
You can speak thanks to your vocal folds and larynx . Your larynx sits above your trachea the airway that goes down to your lungs. The vocal cords, which are two bands of muscle, are inside your larynx, and they open and close. When you speak, air from your lungs makes the cords vibrate, creating sound waves. If you relax your vocal folds, your voice will sound deeper. It will be higher pitched if the vocal folds tense or elongate.
What Is Laryngitis Common Laryngitis Symptoms
Laryngitis causes a hoarse voice or the complete loss of the voice because of irritation to the vocal cords. The vocal cords are inside of the larynx. They are vibrating elastic bands that produce your voice. When our vocal cords function normally, they open and close smoothly. Sounds are made through their movement and vibration. Laryngitis causes the vocal cords to become inflamed and swollen due to overuse. The vocal cords can also be affected by another health concern, like GERD or a viral infection, leading to the distortion of sounds and hoarseness.
There are other laryngitis symptoms, besides a hoarse and raspy voice. Other laryngitis symptoms include losing your voice completely, coughing, trouble swallowing, a dry or sore throat, a tickling, scratchiness in the throat, a constant urge to clear the throat, postnasal discharge and fever.
Most of the time, laryngitis symptoms will come on quickly and then disappear within two weeks. Its possible to develop chronic, long-lasting laryngitis. Chronic laryngitis lasts more than a few weeks. It tends to have a longer course and require treatment. According to research conducted at Boston Medical Center, up to 21 percent of the population may develop chronic laryngitis in their lifetime. Difficulty speaking, globus sensation , and pain are the most common symptoms of chronic laryngitis.
Don’t Miss: What Can You Give Dogs For Allergies
Questions Your Healthcare Provider May Ask
When you visit your healthcare provider, she will first take a careful history. Some of the questions they may ask include:
- When did your symptoms begin?
- Is your hoarseness continuous or do you notice it on and off?
- Have you had any symptoms of a “head cold,” such as a runny nose, fever, or a cough, or have you had an illness such as tonsillitis or mononucleosis?
- Have you strained your voice in any way, for example by cheering for your favorite football team or singing too long or too loudly?
- Do you, or have you ever, smoked?
- Do you drink alcohol?
- Do you have allergies or eczema?
- What other medical conditions do you have?
- Have you experienced any heartburn, unexplained weight loss, persistent cough, coughing up blood, difficulty swallowing, shortness of breath, weakness in any part of your body or felt a lump in your neck?
- Do you or any family members have a history of thyroid problems? Have you experienced any weight gain, constipation, or fatigue?
- What medical conditions run in your family?
How Is Hoarseness Treated
Treatment depends on the condition causing the hoarseness. The conditions and their treatments include:
- Using your voice too much. Rest your voice . Drink water.
- A cold or sinus infection. Let the common cold run its course, or take over-the-counter cold medicines.
- Laryngitis. Talk to your healthcare provider. You may be prescribed antibiotics or corticosteroids.
- Gastroesophageal reflux . There are a variety of treatment options for GERD, including antacids and proton pump inhibitors.
- Vocal fold hemorrhage. Voice rest.
- Neurological diseases and disorders. There are a variety of treatment options for each neurological disease and disorder.
- Vocal nodules, cysts and polyps. Dietary changes and voice therapy with a speech-language pathologist. Surgery is sometimes recommended.
- Vocal fold paralysis. A simple procedure performed by an ENT may push a paralyzed vocal fold back towards the center, or a more complicated surgery may be necessary.
- Laryngeal cancer. Treatment options include radiation therapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy and surgery.
- Recurrent respiratory papillomatosis . Like nodules, papillomas are benign growths. Procedures are done to remove the growths and make sure your airways are clear.
- Muscle tension dysphonia. Treatment options observation or voice therapy with a speech-language pathologist.
Read Also: Dog Allergy Shots For Humans
Can Sinus Problems Affect Singing
Sinus problems can massively affect the quality of your voice. Allergies can target your sinuses, leaving you feeling stuffy and congested and giving you a headache whenever you try to perform.
Sinusitis can also make it hard to sing. The infection is usually caused by bacteria or viruses and can irritate your vocal cords. You may feel too hoarse and stuffy to get on stage but singing can actually help sinusitis.
Humming exercises can help relieve congested sinuses and clear your voice. Many vocal coaches recommend humming phonation to heal your voice.
You can then progress to trying a vocal warmup to clear your airways. If your voice is hoarse and strained, dont push it too hard as this can cause more permanent damage.
Take Our Allergy Assessment
If you want long-term relief from your allergies, sublingual immunotherapy might be the best option for you. At Wyndly, our allergy doctors will create a personalized treatment plan for your allergies to get you living allergy-free. Take our brief online assessment today to see how Wyndly can help you!
You May Like: Best Air Purifier For Allergies Consumer Reports
How Do I Get My Voice Back From Allergies
If youve lost your voice due to allergies, the best way to recover is by treating the allergy itself. Decongestants and antihistamines are off the cards for singers as they dry out your voice. But there are lots of other trailed and tested ways to get back a lost voice:
- Exercise for a few minutes to reduce nasal congestion
- Suck honey, menthol or ginger throat lozenges to soothe throat irritation
- Take a hot shower to wash off any allergens and to get steam into your vocal folds
- Use a saline sinus rinse
- Use a nasal spray to ease congestion and relieve your vocal cords
- Gargle with warm salt water to help your sore throat
Should I Use My Voice If I Have Laryngitis Without Serious Vocal Fold Injury
Infectious laryngitis may be caused by bacteria or viruses. Subglottic involvement frequently indicates a more severe infection, which may be difficult to control in a short period of time. Indiscriminate use of antibiotics must be prevented. However, when the physician is in doubt as to the cause and when a major voice commitment is imminent, vigorous antibiotic treatment is warranted. Corticosteroids may also be helpful in selected cases. These are different from anabolic steroids that have gained notariety through abuse by athletes.
Don’t Miss: Can Allergies Cause Ear Pain
What Research Is Being Done To Better Understand And Treat Hoarseness
Researchers funded by the NIDCD are working with teachers to devise strategies to help them reduce the stress and strain on their voices. In one study, the teachers use a voice dosimeter that takes into account the frequency and loudness of their speech along with the duration of vibration in their vocal folds to determine their daily dose of vocal use. The researcher hopes to establish a safe level of voice use, as well as recommended recovery times from prolonged speaking.
In another study, researchers are working with two groups of student teachers in the United States and China to test the effectiveness of voice hygiene education on its own and with voice production training. The researcher hopes to see how successfully the techniques prevent future voice problems in teachers who have healthy voices at the beginning of the study versus those who already may have some voice problems.
The NIDCD also is supporting a researcher who is planning to make a map of all of the genes, proteins, immune system cells, and bacteria present in the normal larynx so that we can better understand the changes that happen during chronic inflammation of the larynx . Using these findings, models will be made that can be used in the lab to develop and direct future interventions for the prevention and treatment of inflammatory diseases of the larynx.
Can Allergies Cause My Voice To Be Hoarse
Yes. Allergies can cause voice hoarseness. Over time, mucus from an allergic reaction to pollen and dust in the air can cause a buildup of mucus . This mucus may cause a runny nose or post nasal drip in which it drips onto the back of the throat, causing irritation and inflammation. Over time, this can cause a sore throat and a hoarse voice.
Recommended Reading: Best Allergy Medicine For Pet Dander
Warning Disclaimer Use For Publication
WARNING: Please DO NOT STOP MEDICATIONS without first consulting a physician since doing so could be hazardous to your health.
DISCLAIMER: All material available on eHealthMe.com is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment provided by a qualified healthcare provider. All information is observation-only. Our phase IV clinical studies alone cannot establish cause-effect relationship. Different individuals may respond to medication in different ways. Every effort has been made to ensure that all information is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. The use of the eHealthMe site and its content is at your own risk.
If you use this eHealthMe study on publication, please acknowledge it with a citation: study title, URL, accessed date.
Why Is My Voice Hoarse But My Throat Doesn’t Hurt
A hoarse voice without a sore throat can occur when a non-inflammatory condition has caused loss of vocal cord function. This can be caused by overuse like yelling or speaking in an abnormal tone for long periods of time. A vocal cord polyp or nodule which can develop from overuse , and can also cause hoarseness. Additionally, surgery, cancer, or neurological disorders like Parkinson’s disease can also cause hoarseness without pain albeit much less frequently than the above causes.
You May Like: When Is Allergy Season In Florida
What Does Is Sound Like When Your Voice Is Hoarse
Hoarseness refers to a change in the characteristics of an individual’s voice. It can apply to a variety of changes in the voice, including weakness or inability to produce significant volume, fatigability or losing one’s voice quickly, a shaky or altered pitch, a warbling or tremulous tone, or a strained voice quality.
Can Thyroid Problems Cause Hoarseness
Yes, hypothyroidism can cause a deepening of the voice. This deepening is often noticed and more common in middle-aged women. A thyroid nodule or thyroid cancer can interrupt the nerve that supplies one of an individuals two vocal cords, causing paralysis and hoarseness. Finally, surgery on the neck can cause paralysis and hoarseness.
You May Like: Best Dog Food For Dogs With Food Allergies
Five Remedies For Hoarseness
For most Americans, hoarseness is merely an inconvenience. It often starts as a scratchy throat that gradually transforms your voice into a raspy hoarseness which is also called dysphonia. It affects nearly one-third of the population, according to information from the American Academy of Otolaryngology.
It occurs when there are problems affecting your vocal cords or folds of your voice box While it is often caused by colds, allergies, or reflux, chronic hoarseness can indicate a more serious health problem.
You Use Your Voice Too Much
Each time you talk or sing, you use different muscles, including some in your mouth and throat. Just like other muscles in your body, overuse of the ones that help you speak can lead to fatigue, strain, and injury. The wrong technique can also bring on hoarseness.
Here are some common things that you may be doing wrong:
- Speak, sing, yell, or cough too much
- Use a pitch that’s higher or lower than normal when you talk
- Cradle your phone between your head and shoulder
Also Check: How To Reduce Eye Swelling From Allergies
What Causes Chronic Hoarseness
“If you have a cold or another type of upper respiratory infection, it’s not unusual to experience some amount of hoarseness. This isn’t something we worry about too much. However, if your other symptoms clear up and you continue to be hoarse for another two weeks, that’s considered chronic and we begin to worry,” explains Dr. Thekdi.
The most common causes of chronic hoarseness are:
- Overusing your voice, which is most common in individuals who use their voices professionally
- Persistent bacterial or viral infection
- Polyps, cysts or nodules on your vocal cords
- Vocal cord paralysis
Chronically inflamed or irritated vocal cords can lead to strain and injury so it’s important to get chronic hoarseness checked out.
“Additionally, while rare, chronic hoarseness can be a sign of cancer, and this isn’t something we want to miss. When caught early, throat cancer is very curable,” says Dr. Thekdi.
If you’re experiencing chronic hoarseness, an ENT voice specialist can identify the cause and severity of your vocal cord issue, as well as recommend a targeted course of treatment.
Can You Lose Your Voice Without Being Sick
Yiu that hoarseness can also result from development of benign vocal cord lesions, such as cysts or polyps. Its possible that hoarseness is a symptom of vocal cord cancer or other neurological conditions. If you have a hoarse voice, its not necessarily a sign of cancer, but it could indicate that your vocal cords are not functioning properly, Dr. Yu .
You May Like: Symptoms Of Allergies In Adults