Acute laryngitis caused by a virus often gets better on its own within a week or so. Self-care measures also can help improve symptoms.
Chronic laryngitis treatments are aimed at treating the underlying causes, such as heartburn, smoking or excessive use of alcohol.
Medications used in some cases include:
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- Antibiotics. In almost all cases of laryngitis, an antibiotic won't do any good because the cause is usually viral. But if you have a bacterial infection, your doctor may recommend an antibiotic.
- Corticosteroids. Sometimes, corticosteroids can help reduce vocal cord inflammation. However, this treatment is used only when there's an urgent need to treat laryngitis — for example, when you need to use your voice to sing or give a speech or oral presentation, or in some cases when a toddler has laryngitis associated with croup.
- Taking care of your voice. National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/voice/pages/takingcare.aspx. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- McPhee SJ, et al. Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2012. New York, N.Y.: McGraw Hill; 2010. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=2356. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Morton DA, et al. The Big Picture: Gross Anatomy. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=8667745. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Fact sheet: Common problems that can affect your voice. American Academy of Otalaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/HealthInformation/commonvoiceproblems.cfm. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Fact sheet: The voice and aging. American Academy of Otalaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/HealthInformation/Voice-and-Aging.cfm. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Wang AJ, et al. Comparison of patients of chronic laryngitis with and without troublesome reflux symptoms. Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. 2012;27:579.
- Longo DL, et al. Harrison's Online. 18th ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw Hill; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=9097038. Accessed March 8, 2012.
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