Why does persistent yelling make one hoarse?

This is the penalty one has to pay for shouting at the top of one’s voice. Yelling causes the vocal cords to vibrate with unusual force and can result in swelling and possibly even bleeding in the tissue.
The cords look like two thick, muscular violin strings laid adjacent to each other in the larynx. They remain apart while we breathe and come together and vibrate as we talk. But when a person yells, the cords shut tightly, building up tremendous air pressure; then they abruptly open up to let out the sound. The sudden release of air creates a vacuum effect in the larynx, causing the cords to slam together. This slamming can bruise the cords and make them swell so that they won’t fit back together normally. Air will leak between them when it shouldn’t and the person who attempts to speak will suffer laryngitis and hoarseness as the extra air rushes through.

If the swollen cords are not allowed to rest, they may begin bleeding and a callus like nodule will form. Some people try to talk anyway, tightening their larynx to force the vocal cords together. This just makes things worse and further irritates the callus. If the vocal cords are rested, a newly formed callus will heal and disappear in about two weeks. But if it is continually irritated, the callus will persist and become tough. Surgery may then be necessary to remove it.

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