Laryngitis Causes, Diagnosis & Treatment

Laryngitis is an inflammation of the voice box that causes a change in the air flow to your throat. The change in air flow leads to your voice to become hoarse. Laryngitis is usually not serious and symptoms typically go away on their own within two weeks. On rare occasions, laryngitis can become chronic.

What Causes Acute Laryngitis?

 Acute Laryngitis typically occurs from an underlying cause. Most common causes include:

  • Viral infections, similar to the flu or a cold
  • Inflammation of the larynx caused by yelling or overusing your voice
  • Rarely, laryngitis can be caued by diphtheria, which is a bacterial infaction

What Causes Chronic Laryngitis?

Chronic laryngitis is defined as laryngitis that lasts longer than three weeks. More often than not, chronic laryngitis is caused by vocal cord injuries and strain. Vocal cord injury is caused by:

  • GERD ( Acid Reflux)
  • Chronic Sinusitis
  • Excessive Smoking
  • Overusing Vocal Cords while singing or yelling
  • Excessive Alcohol Consumption
  • Some Inhaled Steroid Medications

Diagnosing and Treating Laryngitis

Laryngitis can usually be diagnosed by a doctor noticing common symptoms such as difficulty swallowing, tickling in the throat, swollen lymph nodes and shortness of breath. Based on your symptoms, your physician can tell you the proper way to treat it. Most cases of laryngitis include resting the vocal cords, drinking a lot of fluids and avoiding smoking. In cases where laryngitis is caused by a viral infection, physicians might prescribe antibiotics to speed up healing.

Make an Appointment

Most of the time, laryngitis is treated with home remedy, but medication can also help the healing process. Contact Madison ENT & Facial Plastic Surgery at (212) 213-3339 if you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment.