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Voice Disorders - Types, Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

25 February, 2021 Sanchita Gupta

When your vocal folds come together and vibrate as air passes from them while exhalation from the lungs, the vibration creates sound waves for your voice which provides you the speaking ability.

When your voice does not sound the way it does usually or causes fatigue and discomfort, such kind of disease is a disorder called dysphasia, a voice disorder. Your voice can be choppy or hoarse and may also sound strained which affects the normal speaking capacity. It is a medical condition which affects the speech production.

Types of Voice disorders:

Explore different types of voice disorders:

1. Laryngitis: Due to swelling in the vocal cords, your voice may sound hoarse and you may also not be able to speak. It occurs in the upper respiratory tract due to a virus.

2. Vocal cord paralysis: When the vocal cord nerve suffers from viral infection, it may cause either partial or full paralysis of the vocal cord. The damage is permanent but with the help of therapy and surgery, it can get better over time.

3. Spasmodic Dysphonia (SD): This causes frequent interruption or breakage in the voice which will make your speech difficult to understand by others. This kind of disorder usually occurs in the age group of 30’s to 50’s and is long term in nature.

4. Vocal cord nodules: Vocal fold nodules interfere with the vocal folds by increasing the mass of the vocal folds and changing the configuration of the vocal fold closure pattern causing the quality of the voice getting affected.

Symptoms of Voice disorder:

There are many kinds of voice disorders but their symptoms are alike. Some major symptoms of voice disorders are as follows:

  • Hoarse voice
  • Sensation of something in the throat
  • Vocal fatigue
  • Weak voice
  • Discomfort while speaking
  • Chronic cough
  • Pitch breaks
  • Loss of singing range/quality

If any of the mentioned symptoms lasts for a week you need to consult your doctor and get proper treatment done. Excessive delay or neglecting the signs may cause permanent loss of voice where as adapting surgery or therapy will make the symptoms minimal.

Causes of Voice disorder:

There are various causes related to Voice disorder depending from health condition, medical history, and lifestyle of one individual from the other.

  • Hormonal Changes - While an individual goes through hormonal changes such as changes in the thyroid hormone, male and female hormones or growth hormone they face change in their voice. Voice gets thick and thin due to such changes and affects voice production ability which hampers speech of the sufferer.
  • Misuse of voice tone - Some of us may frequently exaggerate our voice inappropriately in the form of shouting or talking at a high pitch without getting into knowledge. Such misuse of voice will have adverse affects on the vocal cords and it will destroy or cause harshness in voice which will lead in difficulty of formation of voice.
  • Nerve problem - There are some medical conditions such as multiple sclerosis, myasthenia gravis, Parkinson disease, Huntington disease and Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) which affects the vocal cords of an individual. Nerve may also get injured due to surgery which can cause voice disorders.
  • Swelling - Many reasons can cause swelling of your vocal cords such as respiratory illness, allergies, chemical substance, surgery etc. Because of swelling, vocal cords experience pain and trouble in producing voice.
  • Lifestyle - The most vital reason is the lifestyle behind every disease we suffer from. People who smoke tobacco, drink alcohol, intake excessive iced drinks or water and alike are most likely to suffer from vocal problems.

Recommended treatments for Vocal Disorders:

Various treatment options are available in order to treat Vocal Disorders.

  • Voice therapy - Voice therapy is one of the most effective ways to treat a voice disorder. It reduces hoarseness by guiding the change in voice behaviors. The therapy is provided by pathologist of speech- language. Physiologic voice therapy modifies the abnormal physiologic behavior in respiration and other functions.
  • Medicines - There is no direct medicine for voice disorder as it is related with the voice disorder causing disease. After diagnosis of the reason behind such vocal stress, your doctor may prescribe medicines accordingly. Some could be anti-reflux medicines that provide effective medical treatment against reflux laryngitis.
  • Surgery - Targeting the correct surgery plan requires accurate awareness of the cause behind a patient’s voice disorder. Some effective surgeries are Phonomicro surgery, Laryngeal framework surgery and Laser Surgery.
  • Change in lifestyle - Our lifestyle affects our health immensely which is also the best way to get a track of your life. We often start ignoring our stomach health which not only affects our digestive system but other organs as well. So, a change in your type of food and time of eating will do great to better the condition.

Voice disorder can be treated by specialized physician in voice i.e. laryngologist. Any information present on any site can never substitute medical consultancy. We suggest you go for medical consultancy when you experience such kind of symptoms. Stay healthy and happy. You can order medicines online by placing an order on any healthcare portal.


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