By: Libby Ben-Shushan Berbi, Speech Therapist, Reuth Rehabilitation Hospital, Tel Aviv
Hoarseness, a common phenomenon that affects people of all ages, is characterized by diminished vocal quality, with the voice sounding rough and lower in pitch.
- Viral infections.
- benign tumors on the vocal cords.
- Traumatic injuries.
- Vocal cord paralysis resulting from surgery.
- Vocal misuse.
- Air pollution.
Various vocal behaviors can damage the vocal cords, resulting in either temporary or permanent changes in voice functionality and quality. For example:
- Excessive vocal effort.
- Excess tension in neck muscles.
- Insufficient respiratory support.
- Lack of synchronization between breathing and speaking.
- Wrong tone when speaking.
How to protect your voice?
- Don’t raise your voice.
- Avoid talking in noisy places.
- Drink a lot.
- Don’t talk or sing when you are hoarse or ill.
- Get enough
- Don’t clear your throat too often.
- Don’t talk during physical exercise.
- avoid whispering (this also strains your vocal cords)
If hoarseness continues for more than three weeks, it should be diagnosed by an ENT specialist. Based on test results, treatment will be recommended: surgery or speech therapy.
The speech therapist begins by getting to know the patient, and identifying his/her vocal habits and features. A personal therapy program is then established, to eliminate harmful habits and introduce proper voice use, with a focus on breathing, voice production and using resonant cavities in the body.
The information presented in this article is general. It does not constitute medical advice or replace consultation with a physician. It should not be regarded as a recommendation or alternative for medical treatment.
The information presented in the English website is partial. For full info please visit our Hebrew website
(image is for demonstration purposes unsplash)