The vocal cords in the larynx occasionally require treatment because irritation from viruses, bacteria and strain cause discomfort and vocal limitations. Resulting laryngitis or hoarseness interferes with verbal communication, which is important for the 25 to 35 percent of the American workforce whose profession requires them to speak frequently or sing. Ginger is a traditional remedy important for soothing disorders of the throat and supporting a speedy recovery.
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Ginger is a spice that has been significant as a healing agent for thousands of years in Asia. An important remedy in the modern alternative medicine movement, fresh ginger is often a physician's recommendation; however, the active constituents, gingerols and zingerone, in dried ginger are also effective. Fresh ginger generally has a more palatable application for tea- or food-based remedies.
Ginger traditionally reduces inflammation and destroys bacteria, two relevant healing actions for vocal cord irritation. It soothes the throat and may prevent irritation if a professional-voice-user drinks ginger tea regularly to maintain healthy tissue in the vocal cords. The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends steeping minced ginger in hot water for 10 minutes and consuming no more than 4 grams a day.
Because the vocal cords are folds of mucus-lined skin, they require frequent hydration. Drinking water throughout the day is necessary, and other beverages, such as natural ginger brew and iced and hot ginger tea, may heal and refresh. Add honey for an antimicrobial sweetener that also protects cells with antioxidants.
A serious health condition may cause persistent throat irritation, swelling, hoarseness and laryngitis. Post-nasal drip related to food allergies, a throat polyp or a cancerous tumor, particularly for frequent alcohol and tobacco users, may cause throat and voice disorders. Discuss diagnosis and treatments with a physician.
- University of Maryland Medical Center; Ginger; Steven D. Ehrlich, N.M.D.
- Institute for Traditional Medicine; Treatment of Voice and Throat Disorders with Chinese Medicine; Subhuti Dharmananda, Ph.D
- Health Guidance; Laryngitis; Kevin Pederson
- The Western Journal of Medicine; Voice Problems in Entertainers; Hans von Leden, M.D.
- American Academy of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery: Fact Sheet: Keeping Your Voice Healthy