Hoarseness, medically known as dysphonia, is an abnormal change in the quality of your voice. The voice of a patient suffering from hoarseness may be described as strained, raspy, breathy and low in volume. Though we often associate conditions of the throat with the winter season, hoarseness is just as common in the warmer months. Here are three tips to avoid hoarseness this summer.
Enjoy outdoor events but don’t get too carried away
Trauma to the vocal cords is one of the leading contributors to hoarseness during summer. It is during the summer months that you are more likely to attend music festivals and attend concerts. While you are enjoying yourself it is easy to get swept up in the moment, singing at the top of your lungs. However, singing at a consistently high volume for prolonged periods of time, or trying to reach notes that are out of your normal range, can lead to acute vocal cord damage. Cheering your favorite football team (or any other sport of course) can cause vocal cord trauma.
This kind of acute trauma tends to clear up after a couple of days and may be relieved by drinking plenty of water. It may however sometimes take up to two or three weeks for the trauma caused to vocal cords in this way to resolve.
Avoid excessive consumption of alcohol
Drinking alcohol is a gateway to respiratory tract infections, namely, laryngitis. By consuming too much alcohol the larynx and vocal cords can become chemically irritated. Alcohol also dries out the lining of the voice box making its function suboptimal. The voice box needs to be constantly lubricated to help it give you a good voice.
Enjoy yourself this summer but try to restrict your alcohol intake to avoid vocal and throat irritation. It goes without saying that smoking isn’t good for your voice box.
Avoid sleeping on your back
If you sleep on your back you are more likely to snore. When you sleep on your back the muscles around your throat and airway relax and narrow. The passing of airflow over these relaxed muscles results in snoring. Snoring can lead to trauma and dehydration of the vocal cords manifesting in hoarseness particularly on waking in the morning.
Sleeping on your side relieves the pressure on the airway and may reduce the amount and intensity of snoring, protecting the vocal cords.
ENT Specialist in Sheffield
Mr Wale Olarinde is an ear, nose and throat specialist serving Sheffield and the wider South Yorkshire and North Derbyshire region. A respected surgeon in his field, Mr Olarinde is an expert in all ear, nose and throat conditions.
Are you suffering from persistent hoarseness? If so, contact our friendly clinic today on 0114 321 6522 or book a consultation online via our website.