What to do when you lose your voice from allergies


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Do you ever open your mouth to speak, only to discover that every you can do is croak or whisper? You may wonder whats happening in your body when you lose your voice.

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You may experience hoarseness or lose your voice (get laryngitis) when the tissue covering your vocal cords becomes inflamed or swollen.

In another scenario with long-term, heavy voice use, callus-like growths, known as nodules can form on the vocal cords and cause hoarseness.

When this happens, your vocal cords don’t vibrate as easily. This can show up as vocal fatigue, vocal breaks or cause your voice to sound abnormal.

A symptom with numerous causes

Losing your voice is a symptom and not a condition itself, says Paul Bryson, MD, Laryngology Section Head and Director of the Voice Middle at Cleveland Clinic.

“If you own lost your voice, you might discover that your voice sounds rough, raspy, tired or feel love it takes a lot of effort to speak,” he says.

Most often, one of these causes is to blame:

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  1. Talking loudly, yelling or cheering, such as at a sporting event
  2. Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water.

    Avoid dehydrating beverages, such as alcohol and those that contain caffeine.

  3. A vocally demanding occupation that requires you to use your voice frequently over the course of several hours, such as teaching or working in a call center
  4. Seasonal allergies that cause sinus drainage, throat clearing and laryngitis
  5. Seek out quiet. Avoid noisy environments. They can often force you to talk more loudly (or with greater effort) than usual.
  6. Use a humidifier. This will assist hold the air you breathe moist, which can assist soothe inflamed vocal cords.
  7. Rest. Aim to relax your voice as much as possible.

    Talk quietly and only talk half as much as you ordinarily would, or less if possible.

  8. An upper respiratory infection such as a freezing, cough, bronchitis, laryngitis or sinusitis
  9. Medicate. Try an over-the-counter medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. This can assist ease discomfort and vocal cord inflammation.

If you can trace your voice problems back to one of these sources, then losing your voice once in awhile likely isn’t serious, Dr.

Bryson says. If you rely on your voice in your occupation, you may discover that it happens more often for you and may be more of a problem if you rely on your voice daily.

But, occasionally, losing your voice might signal that precancerous or cancerous cells are forming. So you shouldnt ignore a problem that persists beyond two to four weeks.

How endless should you wait it out?

Hoarseness is more likely to happen during an upper respiratory illness.

What to do when you lose your voice from allergies

Youre coughing, clearing your throat a lot and your voice may start to sound croaky or feeble. This can linger from a few days to a few weeks, or even longer in some cases, Dr.

What to do when you lose your voice from allergies

Bryson says.

How endless should you wait to see if it will go away on its own? It depends.

“If you rely on your voice for your occupation, make plans to see your doctor if your voice isn’t better in two weeks,” he says.

Risk factors such as a history of smoking, a history of cancer or other health concerns should immediate an evaluation for hoarseness that lingers beyond two to four weeks.

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Here’s what to do in the meantime

While there is no quick repair to assist get your voice back, Dr.

Bryson offers these tips to soothe inflamed vocal cords:

  • Seek out quiet. Avoid noisy environments. They can often force you to talk more loudly (or with greater effort) than usual.
  • Use a humidifier. This will assist hold the air you breathe moist, which can assist soothe inflamed vocal cords.
  • Rest. Aim to relax your voice as much as possible. Talk quietly and only talk half as much as you ordinarily would, or less if possible.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water. Avoid dehydrating beverages, such as alcohol and those that contain caffeine.
  • Medicate. Try an over-the-counter medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

    This can assist ease discomfort and vocal cord inflammation.

If your hoarseness persists for longer than two weeks to a month, talk with your doctor. He or she may propose a laryngoscopy, a procedure that will offer a better view of your larynx.

“Our ability to better visualize your larynx can assist us more quickly diagnose something that might need surgical management or medication,” Dr. Bryson says.

Some experts recommend visualization of the vocal cords before beginning prescription medications, such as anti-reflux medications, steroids or antibiotics.

The bottom line?

Most of the time your laryngitis will resolve itself in a week or two, with no lasting effects. But if the problem lingers on toward a month, its a excellent thought to get checked by a otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat) doctor to make certain there isnt something serious at work.

Laryngitis is when your voice box or vocal cords in the throat become irritated or swollen. It generally goes away by itself within 1 to 2 weeks.

If your hoarseness persists for longer than two weeks to a month, talk with your doctor. He or she may propose a laryngoscopy, a procedure that will offer a better view of your larynx.

“Our ability to better visualize your larynx can assist us more quickly diagnose something that might need surgical management or medication,” Dr.

Bryson says.

Some experts recommend visualization of the vocal cords before beginning prescription medications, such as anti-reflux medications, steroids or antibiotics.

The bottom line?

What to do when you lose your voice from allergies

Most of the time your laryngitis will resolve itself in a week or two, with no lasting effects. But if the problem lingers on toward a month, its a excellent thought to get checked by a otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat) doctor to make certain there isnt something serious at work.

Laryngitis is when your voice box or vocal cords in the throat become irritated or swollen. It generally goes away by itself within 1 to 2 weeks.


Comments


Can allergies cause me to lose my voice?

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 hard to breathe easily. Finally, even your allergy medicines can affect your voice.

What to do when you lose your voice from allergies

Antihistamines dry up the mucus in your body. While this helps relieve congestion, it also dries up the layer of mucus that protects your vocal cords.

What to do when you lose your voice from allergies

If your vocal cords are dry they can stiffen or inflame, which can make your voice raspy.


Check if you own laryngitis

Laryngitis generally comes on suddenly and gets worse during the first 3 days.

The main symptoms are:

  1. sometimes losing your voice
  2. always needing to clear your throat
  3. a hoarse (croaky) voice
  4. an irritating cough that does not go away
  5. a sore throat

Children can also:

  1. have a high temperature of 38C or above
  2. be off their food or drink
  3. have difficulty breathing (but this is rare)

Laryngitis is often linked to other illnesses, such as colds and flu, so you may also own other symptoms.

If you’re not certain it’s laryngitis, check other sore throat symptoms.


How can I protect my voice?

So what can you do to protect your voice from allergens?

The first thing is to avoid allergens and hold your home as allergen-free as possible. Hold your windows closed during peak pollen times.

What to do when you lose your voice from allergies

Wash your sheets in boiling water once a week. Vacuum or run an air filter regularly.

If you still need medicine, use medicines that won’t affect your mucus levels.

“There are numerous treatment options for allergies,” CEENTA Otolaryngologist S. Brett Heavner, MD, said. “For professional voice users, topical medications love nasal steroids and nasal antihistamines seem to work better since they own less of a drying effect on the throat and voice.”

Nasal steroid sprays such as Flonase, Rhinocort, and Nasacort are effective in treating allergies.

Some pills, such as Singulair and other leukotrienes, can be taken at night and won’t dry out your vocal cords the way antihistamines would.

Some patients with severe allergies may qualify for immunotherapy. Immunotherapy is a treatment system where patients are given shots, drops, or tablets of the substance they are allergic to in gradually-increasing doses. This helps patients increase their tolerance to those allergens. It won’t cure the allergy, but it will reduce your symptoms.

If you follow these steps you can hold your allergies at bay and assist hold your voice clear and strong.

This blog is for informational purposes only.

What to do when you lose your voice from allergies

For specific medical questions, please consult your physician.Dr. Heavner practices out of CEENTA’s SouthPark and Steele Creek offices. To schedule an appointment with him or any of our ear, nose, and throat doctors, call




How you can treat laryngitis yourself

Laryngitis generally goes away on its own after 1 to 2 weeks and you do not need to see a GP.

Do

  1. drink plenty of fluids
  2. hold the air moist by putting out bowls of water – central heating and air conditioning make the air dry
  3. attempt to speak as little as possible
  4. gargle with warm salty water (children should not attempt this)

Don't

  1. do not smoke
  2. do not spend time in smoky or dusty places
  3. do not talk loudly or whisper – both strain your voice
  4. do not drink too much caffeine or alcohol – they cause dehydration


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What to do when you lose your voice from allergies