Laryngitis is an inflammation of larynx (vocal cord) from overuse the voice, irritation or infection.
Inside the larynx vocal cords —this is the two folds of mucous membrane covering muscle and cartilage. Normally, your vocal cords open and close smoothly, forming sounds through their movement and vibration.
But with laryngitis, vocal cords become inflamed or irritated. This causet the swelling in vocal cords, which distorts the sounds produced by air passing over them. As a result, voice sounds hoarse.
Laryngitis may be acute or chronic. Most cases of laryngitis are triggered by a temporary viral infection and aren't serious. Persistent hoarseness can sometimes signal a more serious underlying medical condition.
In most cases laryngitis symptoms last less than a couple of weeks and are caused by something minor, such as a virus. Less often, laryngitis symptoms are caused by something more serious or long lasting. Laryngitis signs and symptoms can include:
- Weak voice or voice loss
- Tickling sensation and rawness in your throat
- Sore throat
- Dry throat
- Dry cough
Most cases of laryngitis are temporary and improve after the underlying cause gets better. Causes of acute laryngitis include:
- Viral infections similar to those that cause a cold
- Vocal strain, caused by yelling or overusing your voice
- Bacterial infections, although these are less common
Laryngitis that lasts longer than three weeks is known as chronic laryngitis. This type of laryngitis is generally caused by exposure to irritants over time. Chronic laryngitis can cause vocal cord strain and injuries or growths on the vocal cords (polyps or nodules). Chronic laryngitis can be caused by:
- Inhaled irritants, such as chemical fumes, allergens or smoke
- Acid reflux, also called gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Chronic sinusitis
- Excessive alcohol use
- Habitual overuse of your voice (such as in singers or cheerleaders)
Less common causes of chronic laryngitis include:
- Bacterial or fungal infections
- Infections with certain parasites
Other causes of chronic hoarseness include:
- Vocal cord paralysis, which can result from nerve injury due to surgery, injury to the chest or neck, cancer, nerve disorders, or other health conditions
- Bowing of the vocal cords
Risk factors for laryngitis include:
- Having a respiratory infection, such as a cold, bronchitis or sinusitis
- Exposure to irritating substances, such as cigarette smoke, excessive alcohol intake, stomach acid or workplace chemicals
- Overusing your voice, by speaking too much, speaking too loudly, shouting or singing
In some cases of laryngitis caused by infection, the infection may spread to other parts of the respiratory tract.
To prevent dryness or irritation to your vocal cords:
- Avoid smoking
- Limit alcohol and caffeine.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Keep spicy foods out of your diet
- Include a variety of healthy foods in your diet.
- Avoid clearing your throat
- Avoid upper respiratory infections. Wash your hands often, and avoid contact with people who have upper respiratory infections such as colds.
Aconitum. For laryngitis that comes on after exposure to cold and may be accompanied by a dry cough.
Allium cepa. For hoarseness associated with a cold and clear, watery discharge.
Argenticum nitricum. For laryngitis in nervous, restless individuals that may be brought on by yelling or singing.
Hepar sulphuricum. For laryngitis with barking cough that worsens in the morning.
Kali bichromicum. For laryngitis with a cough that is characterized by a stringy yellow mucus; this remedy is most appropriate for individuals who have a tickling sensation in the back of the throat with symptoms that worsen after drinking.e.t.c