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Home Remedies for Losing Your Voice

By Kathleen Blanchard, R.N. ; Updated July 27, 2017

Home remedies can help if you lose your voice--assuming the underlying cause is not serious. Losing your voice means time lost from work. For anyone who uses their voice for a living, the consequences can be more significant. You probably have a home remedy for losing your voice in your kitchen cupboard. Most cases only last a few days, but losing your voice can become a problem that lasts for months.


A cold or virus can cause laryngitis that may cause hoarseness or the complete inability to talk. Yelling, exposure to fumes such a tobacco or harsh chemicals, and bacterial infection in the upper respiratory tract can prompt seeking home remedies when you lose our voice. GERD (gastric reflux) can also cause hoarseness and voice loss.

Losing your voice can be acute and last a few days or chronic, lasting up to two months.

Pamper Your Throat

Keep your throat and mucous membranes moist by staying well hydrated. Caffeine and alcohol are dehydrating--avoid consumption of either.

Avoid being around people who smoke. If you smoke, seek help with smoking cessation. Tobacco fumes are irritation, and can worsen inflammation associated with voice loss.

Humidify the air around you. A vaporizer can be purchased at the local pharmacy. Keep it next to you, but make sure to clean it thoroughly according to the manufacturer's direction to avoid bacteria respiratory infection or the worsening of an existing infection. Run the vaporizer through the night, placing it next to your bed.

Drink 8 to 10 glasses of water a day if you have no fluid restrictions from other health problems to remedy laryngitis and voice loss.

Use Salt Water Gargles

One-half teaspoon of salt added to one cup of warm water provides temporary relief for losing your voice. Gargling several times a day will help with healing. The solution is saline when mixed in the proportions mentioned. Too much salt will dry the membranes and make laryngitis worse.

It is important to gargle gently. Too much force can irritate the throat and prolong voice loss. You can also gargle with a pinch of salt mixed with warm water and lemon juice to stimulate saliva and moisten the throat.

Spicy Remedies

Garlic has powerful antibiotic effects. Allicin in garlic is shown to have an antimicrobial effect. Make a pot of garlic soup. Do not salt the soup. Use herbs for seasoning. There are a variety of recipes available for garlic soup. Try one that looks easy to make. Garlic is effective against some viruses, and can provide relief for losing your voice. If you are feeling really brave, you can eat a clove of garlic.

Make (or buy) ginger tea. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties. If you make your own tea, use fresh ginger root steeped in water for 30 minutes. Sip the tea throughout the day. Add honey to home-made ginger tea for extra help with losing your voice.

Some people attest to the power of vinegar mixed with water, used as a gargle, to help with voice loss.

Inhale Steam

Take a hot shower with the doors closed. Linger in the room. You can also open the dishwasher after it cycles and inhale the steam to sooth a scratchy throat and help with voice loss from laryngitis.

Boil water on the stove, pull the hood of your favorite sweatshirt or robe around your face, lean over and inhale the steam from a safe distance.

You can also use a towel around you face to capture the steam to help with voice loss. Stay there for 10 to 15 minutes, and repeat the process several times a day. Do not get too close to avoid discomfort and burns.


Always talk softly when you are experiencing hoarseness or losing your voice. Whispering is strenuous, so just keep your voice soft and only talk when absolutely necessary. Resting your voice is the most effective way to remedy losing your voice.

Antihistamines can prolong voice loss because they dry the mucous membranes in the throat.

If you cough blood, experience fever, throat pain, persistent cough or permanent voice change associated with losing your voice, seek medical advice. Voice loss might be due to a bacterial infection treatable with antibiotics. Other serious cause might include growth on the vocal chords, including cancerous tumors.

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