Skip to main content

What Made Me Lose My Voice?

What Made Me Lose My Voice?

Ever cleared your throat to speak only to find nothing but a whisper emerges? It's a startling experience, and while many of us have dealt with the temporary inconvenience of laryngitis, there can be a variety of causes behind losing your voice.

Board-certified ENT providers, Charles Greene, MD, PhD, and Tara Condrey, PA-C, at Jacksonville ENT Surgery in Lake City and Jacksonville, Florida, routinely help patients of all ages navigate the complexities of their vocal health. 

If you’re struggling with a missing voice, it’s important to see your ENT provider for an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment. In the meantime, keep reading to learn about some common causes that make us lose our voice and the therapies that can help. 

1. Infection-related inflammation

Imagine waking up with a hoarse voice, throat pain, and perhaps even a fever. It's not just the result of cheering on your favorite team the night before; it might be a type of inflammation called laryngitis. 

An inflammation of the voice box, this condition can come about due to a cold, the flu, or excessive voice use. As your vocal cords swell, they can't vibrate properly, changing how your voice sounds or making it vanish temporarily.

2. Acid reflux

Have you ever felt a persistent cough or an uncomfortable sensation, almost like something was stuck in your throat? Maybe it was accompanied by a mild burning sensation.

Surprisingly, losing your voice can be due to acid reflux. Reflux laryngitis develops when acid escaping from your stomach journeys up to your throat, irritating the vocal cords and leading to a temporary loss or change in voice.

3. Vocal “abuse”

After a prolonged period of speaking or shouting, have you felt your voice become strained or breathy? Maybe you've experienced pain while talking, or you've found your vocal range to be decreased. 

Vocal abuse (overusing or straining your voice) can lead to these symptoms. Repetitive vocal abuse can result in chronic voice issues and should not be taken lightly. Talk to your Jacksonville ENT Surgery provider for tips on how to save your voice. 

4. Vocal cord paralysis

Feeling breathless or having difficulty changing pitch while speaking? Maybe you've even choked on your food a couple of times. These symptoms can arise from vocal cord paralysis

This happens when the nerve impulses to your vocal cords get disrupted. This can be due to reasons ranging from injury and stroke to other medical conditions. Don’t wait to schedule an appointment if this sounds familiar. 

5. Smoking

For those who smoke, chronic hoarseness, persistent coughing, and regular throat irritation might be familiar sensations. These are signs that the smoke is affecting your vocal cords, leading to inflammation and even growths over time. The repercussions on the voice are just a few among the many reasons to consider quitting smoking!

6. Nodules, polyps, or cysts 

A constant hoarseness, the sensation of a lump when you swallow, or difficulty in swallowing might hint at growths on the vocal cords

Whether it's nodules from long-term irritation, polyps or cysts from vocal abuse, or in rare cases, tumors, these growths can majorly impact the voice. Your Jacksonville ENT Surgery provider can diagnose your condition and create a personalized treatment plan to meet your needs. 

Seeking help for your voice

If you've experienced any of the symptoms mentioned above — especially if they persist — it's important to consult an ENT specialist at Jacksonville ENT Surgery. The complex relationship of your larynx, vocal cords, and ability to communicate means getting prompt attention for voice changes is paramount for your vocal health.

The good news is that different therapies can help improve your vocal health and restore your “missing” voice. The right treatment depends on your unique needs and may range from simple voice rest and therapy, medications to reduce inflammation, lifestyle changes, or even surgery in cases with growths.

Concerned about your voice or vocal health? Don’t wait to schedule an appointment online or over the phone with a provider at Jacksonville ENT Surgery in Lake City or Jacksonville, Florida. 

You Might Also Enjoy...

Is Loud Snoring a Danger Sign?

Is Loud Snoring a Danger Sign?

Loud snoring can be an annoyance for you and your partner. But sometimes it’s also a symptom of a larger health problem. Read on to learn more about what causes snoring, when it becomes dangerous, and why you should make an appointment with an ENT.
How to Put an End to Chronic Rhinitis

How to Put an End to Chronic Rhinitis

Feeling like your nose has become a faucet you can't turn off? There’s an FDA-cleared treatment that can help. Find out how this innovative approach is providing long-lasting relief to those suffering from chronic rhinitis.
How to Ensure a Smooth Tonsillectomy Recovery

How to Ensure a Smooth Tonsillectomy Recovery

If you’re concerned about recovering after a tonsillectomy, know that there are steps you can take to make it a smoother experience. Keep reading to learn our top tips for getting back to normal faster after this surgery.

6 Common Signs of Nasal Polyps

Wondering if you have nasal polyps? There are some common signs many people with this benign condition experience. Keep reading to see if you recognize any and learn about the ways we can help.

Understanding 5 Different Types of Allergies

Red, itchy eyes, a runny nose, hives: There’s no doubt that allergies are a pain! Understanding your allergies is key for finding effective relief. Keep reading to learn about five common allergy types and the ways we can help.
Here's What You Can Expect When You Get Ear Tubes

Here's What You Can Expect When You Get Ear Tubes

Facing persistent ear infections and considering ear tubes for you or a loved one? Understanding the procedure and what follows can help you achieve peace of mind. Read on to learn what you need to know.