If you are struggling with a voice disorder, you know how difficult it can be to communicate and express yourself. As we keep finding ways to vocalize our thoughts and feelings, having an impediment like a voice disorder can make the process more challenging. However, understanding the underlying cause of your condition and exploring different treatment options for managing symptoms can be incredibly empowering as well as inspiring.
What Is a Voice Disorder?
The American Speech, Language and Hearing Association identifies voice problems as any abnormality in pitch, loudness, or quality that distracts from what you're saying. You may also experience physical pain, discomfort, or fatigue while speaking. From mild laryngitis to serious illnesses, voice disorders come in all forms and may require extensive treatment. Watch out for symptoms, such as hoarseness or voice changes, that persist for more than two weeks and seek medical evaluation.
Common Signs of a Voice Disorder
Your voice holds great power. It's a tool that can convey your thoughts, emotions, and desires. However, not all of us are blessed with a perfect voice. Sometimes, speaking can be tough due to voice disorders. These disorders can manifest in a variety of ways, including:
- A hoarse or croaky voice
- Difficulty speaking loudly
- Sensation of throat discomfort
- Pain while talking
- Complete loss of voice
- Difficulty swallowing
- Changes in pitch
- Shortness of breath when speaking
- Constant throat-clearing or coughing
- Lump in throat
- Acidic taste in mouth
- Excess mucous or phlegm
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