Laryngitis is an inflammation of the vocal cords in the larynx or the voice box. It is caused by overuse, irritation and infections.
Symptoms of laryngitis
- Sore throat
- Dry throat
- Dry cough
- Weak voice or loss of voice
- Tickling sensation and rawness of the throat
Severe symptoms such as coughing up blood; fever; difficulty with breathing, severe pain and difficulty with swallowing needs medical help immediately
Severe symptoms in children
- High-pitched breathing sound when inhaling or strider
- Difficulty with swallowing and breathing
- Having a fever higher than 39.4 C
- Vocal strain caused by yelling or overuse of the voice
- Viral infections similar that cause common cold
- Bacterial infections such as diphtheria
- Inhaling irritants such as allergens, smoke and chemical fumes
- Chronic sinusitis
- Acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD
- Excessive drinking alcohol
- Excessive overuse of the voice such as cheerleaders and singers
- Fungal or bacterial infections
- Infections caused by parasites
- Rest the affected area. Avoid a situation that needs plenty of talking or shouting. Avoid straining the voice to be heard by everybody. Just talk into a speaker phone that can be turned up or use an amplifying device. Take a break from singing to prevent worsening of the inflammation.
- Gargle using warm salt water. Fill a glass with warm water and add ½ teaspoon of salt. Stir until salt is totally dissolved. Gargle the solution around the back of the throat for at least a few minutes and then spit it out.
- Inhale steam from a hot bath or shower. Take a shower and set the setting in hot as hot that can be tolerated and inhale the steam for at least 15-20 minutes to loosen up accumulation of mucus in the throat and for easy drainage. Another alternative is using a cool-mist humidifier or vaporizer to add moisture into the air. It also helps loosen up the phlegm.
- Prescribe antibiotics to lessen the pain and the inflammation of laryngitis caused by bacterial infections.
- In severe cases breathing is inserted into the throat, a procedure called intubation and is attached to a ventilator that helps with breathing by moving air into and out of the lungs.
- Over-the-counter pain medications to lessen the pain and the inflammation.
- Suck on prescribed lozenges to relieve of the pain and the coughing. It also adds moisture to the throat.
- Drink plenty of fluids to keep the body well hydrated, loosen accumulated phlegm and flush out mucus. Drink at least 8 glassed of water every day. Warm liquids such soup and tea to relieve of the congestion and for fast drainage of mucus. Avoid liquids with caffeine to prevent dehydration.