Just like any other body part, the vocal chords can become injured. If this happens, you will initially see an ear, nose and throat doctor to diagnose the issue. However, once the problem has been identified, a speech-language pathologist can provide therapy to help restore vocal function. Today, we’ll talk about two common issues that can affect vocal function: Nodules and polyps.
-Nodules: Nodules are masses of tissue much like calluses on the vocal chords that result from vocal misuse or abuse over time. Although nodules are generally not dangerous, they can prevent the vocal chords from closing properly, resulting in a hoarse or breathy voice.
-Polyps: Like nodules, polyps are masses of tissue on the vocal chords which prevent them from closing properly during speech. However, polyps usually occur from a single traumatic event that injures the vocal chords as opposed to the longer-term abuse of nodules.
Once a person has been identified as having nodules or polyps they may be treated medically or surgically to remedy the problem. In order to rehabilitate the voice and prevent the injury from recurring, a person will then undergo voice therapy with a speech-language pathologist. The speech therapist will provide behavior modification to help reduce vocal abuse and provide strategies for using the voice in a healthier, more efficient manner.
If you or someone you know is experiencing issues with voice use, contact your physician, and find a speech-language pathologist who can help you get back to sounding like yourself again! Visit us at www.speechassociatesofny.com today to find a speech-language pathologist who’s right for you.