What is laryngitis?

Laryngitis is swelling and infection of the voice box and surrounding area. It usually is caused by a bacterial or viral infection. Sometimes, irritation from tobacco smoke, allergies, or excessive shouting, talking or singing can cause laryngitis. You usually will feel better in one to two weeks.

What should I do?

  • Do not use your voice for several days. Either whisper or write notes until you can talk normally.
  • Use a cool-mist humidifier (vaporizer) to increase air moisture. This will help relieve the tight feeling in your throat. Hot, steamy showers will also help.
  • Do not smoke or drink alcohol until your voice is back to normal.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Drink extra fluids, such as water, fruit juice and tea.

Call the doctor if:

  • You have a temperature over ____°F (____°C).
  • Hoarseness lasts longer than seven days.
  • You have bleeding from the throat.
  • Your throat feels worse.
  • You have large, tender lumps in your neck.

Return to the doctor IMMEDIATELY if:

  • You have difficulty breathing.
  • You have trouble swallowing and begin drooling.
Mission Health Care Network | 2525 de Sales Avenue | Chattanooga, TN 37404 | MissionHealth@memorial.org
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