National Institutes of Health
- The primary NIH organization for research on Voice Disorders is the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
Voice is the sound made by air passing from your lungs through your larynx, or voice box. In your larynx are your vocal cords, two bands of muscle that vibrate to make sound. For most of us, our voices play a big part in who we are, what we do, and how we communicate. Like fingerprints, each person's voice is unique.
Many things we do can injure our vocal cords. Talking too much, screaming, constantly clearing your throat, or smoking can make you hoarse. They can also lead to problems such as nodules, polyps, and sores on the vocal cords. Other causes of voice disorders include infections, upward movement of stomach acids into the throat, growths due to a virus, cancer, and diseases that paralyze the vocal cords.
Signs that your voice isn't healthy include
Treatment for voice disorders varies depending on the cause. Most voice problems can be successfully treated when diagnosed early.
NIH: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)