Laryngitis

summary laryngitis

Laryngitis is an inflammation of the larynx that can be caused by viruses, bacteria or some other irritation. Measles is also one of the causes of laryngitis, especially in young children.
The disease is divided into acute and chronic. Acute laryngitis is more aggressive and lasts for a shorter time, whereas chronic disease develops over time and may have recurrences. Symptoms include voice change, sore throat, difficulty swallowing and breathing.
The diagnosis includes an interview with the patient and more accurate exams using the laryngoscope. Although the disease tends to have no complications, some problems can occur, especially when left untreated, such as suffocation.

Treatment is done according to the causes of the disease (viral or bacterial) and its severity. Some plants are used, such as mallow, thymus and marsh. If you suffer from laryngitis, hydrate yourself well, rest, try to speak as little as possible so as not to strain your vocal cords, and constantly humidify the air.

Definition

Laryngitis is an inflammation or irritation of the larynx. Remember that the larynx is an organ found inside the throat, after the lower part of the mouth, in the region known as “Adam’s apple” in men. It is part of the respiratory tract and helps us speak through the vocal cords.
There are two types of laryngitis: acute laryngitis and chronic laryngitis. Acute disease appears suddenly and heals in a short time, while chronic laryngitis develops gradually, lasts longer and can be repeated.

Laryngitis qualifies as chronic if it lasts longer than 3 weeks.

Causes

Laryngitis is mainly of viral origin, but also bacterial. They can be transmitted when the patient coughs or sneezes and emits droplets. Likewise, direct contact promotes the spread of germs through contaminated hands or objects.

Infections around organs can also move towards the larynx. Examples are colds, respiratory illnesses, flu and diphtheria.

Measles ( viral disease) can cause laryngitis as a complication. When the condition affects young children, it is known as stridulous laryngitis, as you may hear a whistling sound and breathing tends to be difficult.
Extreme fatigue and immunosuppression due to weak immune system increase the risk of infection.

Vocal cords are very damaged during laryngitis. Singers, (sports) fans, teachers and people who cry or cough a lot are more likely to be affected. Also Read: Hoarseness

External factors can also cause laryngitis. This is the case of prolonged and repeated exposure to irritating agents, such as smoke, allergies, dust, dry air, alcohol, cold, etc. Injury to the vocal cords from strangulation, blows to the throat, or insect bites can cause laryngitis, although it is rare. External aggressions, such as allergens, can cause chronic laryngitis.

Regurgitation or the return of acidic stomach contents to the mouth can cause irritation of the larynx. In particular, gastroesophageal reflux can lead to laryngitis. Some people may also get laryngitis due to cancer or tumors of the larynx .

Symptoms

Acute laryngitis
The main symptom is voice alteration. Your tone may become more hoarse. Sometimes the patient completely loses his voice and needs to speak in a whisper to communicate. Dry cough is also common, taking on a rough character (dog cough). Tingling, sore throat and swallowing problems may occur less frequently. A dry throat or mouth can also appear in case of laryngitis.
Acute laryngitis usually has infectious causes. The presence of runny nose, sneezing, body aches and fever facilitates the diagnosis.

Also, see a doctor as soon as you notice these signs, as they can be a sign of serious laryngitis:

– Hoarse cough, especially at night

– Difficulty in breathing with worse during inspiration

– Blue coloring of the skin

– weak voice

– Inability to cry in children

– Difficulty in swallowing, with pain in the throat

– Hypersalivation or copious emission of saliva

Chronic laryngitis
The main symptom is also voice change. But unlike acute laryngitis, the evolution is slow over time if the cause is not treated.

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of laryngitis is made by questioning the physician. Its objective is, therefore, to identify the circumstances of the occurrence of the disease. Possible factors related to the problem, possible allergies, professional factors or in the home environment, family and personal history of the patient are discussed during the interview.
The doctor will then examine the patient through a special device called a laryngoscope. Sometimes it is necessary to perform a more detailed sampling of a fragment of the lesion in order to locate and treat the cause.

Complications

Some cases heal spontaneously, but others require specific treatments. The most serious complication is suffocation which is especially fatal for children. It is essential to consult a doctor as soon as possible if the signs of seriousness mentioned above appear or persist for more than 1 to 2 weeks.

Treatments

Curative
treatment Treatment depends on the cause of the disease.
For viral laryngitis, your doctor may prescribe medication that can restore normal breathing and ease uncomfortable symptoms. Bacterial laryngitis needs antibiotics. These are drugs used to kill bacteria or stop them from growing.
In order not to overload the vocal cords, rest is essential. Throat humidification ensures faster improvement and relieves painful sensations.

In the most severe cases, hospitalization is required.

Corticosteroids
In some cases, your doctor may prescribe corticosteroids, as these medications can help reduce inflammation of the vocal cords. According to the Mayo Clinic , because of the risk of side effects, corticosteroids are used only when there is an urgent need to treat laryngitis, such as in a young child with laryngitis associated with croup (laryngotracheobronchitis).

Preventive treatment
To avoid irritation of the larynx, it is necessary:

– Vaccination against flu, diphtheria, measles and other diseases;

– Avoid harmful environment containing substances that irritate the throat including tobacco, smoke and dust;

– Don’t use your voice too much, especially for singers, teachers, and sports fans.

Herbal medicine

The medicinal plants below are interesting in the treatment of laryngitis:
– Chamomile , used as a gargle, tea or a capsule.
– Cassis, used in the form of lozenges.
– Alteia , used as a tea or lozenges.
– Malva , used as a tea, lozenges, gargle or capsules.
– Iceland moss , used as teas and pastilles.
– Liquorice , used in the form of pastihas or tea.
– Sage , used as a tea, lozenge, capsule or gargle, this being one of the most effective forms.
– Thyme, strong disinfectant, used as tea, capsule, syrup, as well as essential oil, this being one of the most effective ways.

Tips

The following recommendations will help you if you or your child has laryngitis:
1. Be silent, without whispering, so as not to aggravate the irritation of the vocal cords. In other words, rest your voice as much as possible. Whispering puts more strain on the vocal cords than normal speaking.
2. Try to drink as much as possible, except alcoholic beverages.
3. Make breathing easier by moistening the air we breathe.
4. Take care of your children, to avoid suffocation especially at night.
5. Consult a physician if symptoms persist or if signs of severity appear.

In case of complications:

– Do not panic;

– Humidify the air as much as possible;

– Place the patient in a sitting position;

– Alert the doctor or emergency room and follow their advice.

Jeanne Kenney
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I’m a stylist trainer, a content creator, and an entrepreneur passion. Virgo sign and Pisces ascendant, I move easily between my dreams, the crazy world I want, and my feet on the ground to carry out my projects.

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