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Laryngitis is an inflammation of the larynx that can be quite painful and also irritating because it makes it difficult to speak. Fortunately, most people recover from this condition within a few weeks, often with the use of home remedies. As with any medical condition, patients should consult a medical professional if the symptoms do not abate within a week, or if they have any difficulty breathing. The healthcare provider may recommend some home remedies, but she may also prescribe medication or conduct diagnostic testing to rule out other problems that may be causing voice loss.
One of the best ways to treat laryngitis is to avoid it. Individuals should try to refrain from smoking and inhaling other harmful substances, and not strain the voice by shouting and screaming. Since many cases are caused by infection, people should practice good hygiene and eat a healthy diet to keep their immune systems strong. At the first sign of any soreness in the throat, they can take vitamin C and zinc lozenges.
If inflammation does develop, the most important thing the sufferer can do is rest his voice. Ideally, he should not talk at all, and if he does need to speak, he should use a low voice, not a whisper, as whispers can be hard on the throat. He should take the opportunity to take a rest, and use the laryngitis as an excuse to stay home, work in the garden, organize his bookshelf, or do other quiet tasks. If he stays quiet and calm for a few days, and the condition may heal.
Staying hydrated will also speed recovery. Drinking water is a great way to do this, and sufferers can also drink teas, some of which may soothe the irritation in the throat. Ginger tea is an excellent choice, as is lemon tea, and individuals may want to sweeten them with honey, which is naturally antibacterial. If the sufferer can stand it, he may want to drink strong lemon or cider vinegar solutions every few hours, creating a more acidic environment in the throat so that bacteria are not inclined to linger. Patients should avoid drying foods and drinks, especially coffee and alcohol.
Individuals can also improve the conditions in the throat by inhaling moist air and steam. They may want to try running the shower for a few moments in the bathroom before stepping in and taking a long, hot shower. A sufferer can also fill a bowl with hot water and hold his head over it, covering the head with a towel to make a miniature steam room. Essential oils like lemon and orange can make the experience more enjoyable.
Advice on gargles is divided. Some medical professionals support gargling with salt water, vinegar, or lemon juice, because these substances will reduce the amount of bacteria in the throat and soothe inflammation. Others believe that the larynx is too far down in the throat for gargling to help, and that patients may actually hurt the voice even more by gargling. Individuals may want to consult with a healthcare provider for an opinion.
I've always used a solution of apple cider vinegar for laryngitis.
You take one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar mixed into a half a glass of water every hour for about a day or so, and it will get you feeling better soon.
There are a lot of homeopathic remedies for laryngitis out there actually.
Besides the ever-popular zinc lozenges, there are a number of herbs and supplements that are helpful.
One of the most popular supplements for laryngitis is phosphorus, which you can take in the form of tablets or as a tincture.
Another good supplement is a combination of aconite, ginger, and ginseng, sometimes called Si Ni Tang.
Finally, kali birch is really good for those who have chronic throat problems or chronic laryngitis.
As always though, you should consult a doctor or naturopath before using any type of remedy, and should follow up with prompt medical care should your situation worsen.
This may be my inner child speaking, but I've always found that eating cool things, like ice cream or Jello, is a good treatment for laryngitis.
Perhaps it's more of a soothing thing than anything else, but it always makes my throat feel a lot better.
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