Is Menopause Changing My Voice?
The body changes with age, and — as we all know — menopause is one of life’s biggest times of change. Hot flashes. Night sweats. Anxiety. Many of the symptoms are common knowledge, but one symptom often goes overlooked: a menopause vocal change.
Yes, for women in their 40s and 50s, the hormonal fluctuations of menopause can affect not only the body, but also the voice. Some experts believe the changes can be even more dramatic than for teen boys going through puberty.
Vocal changes associated with menopause can include:
- Lower vocal frequency
- A rougher, hoarser voice
- Dryness in the throat
- A nagging urge to clear the throat
And why does menopause vocal change happen?
It’s linked to estrogen. When the body has less of the hormone, the voice can become breathy, lower-pitched and hoarse. Also during menopause, the vocal cords can swell, and the mucous membranes around the vocal tract can change consistency. Those changes can impact the voice just as much.
If you’re going through menopause and notice your voice changing, it’s important to tell your doctor. During doctor visits about menopause, some of the more commonly talked-about symptoms can dominate the conversation, but be sure your full list of concerns are heard.
The voice inevitably changes over time — for both women and men — but there are steps that can help preserve it. An ENT doctor can recommend vocal exercises, diet changes (such as avoiding fatty or spicy foods) and other personalized steps to keep your voice in its best possible shape.
Your voice is an important part of your life. When you’re looking for advice to keep yours healthy and strong, we’ll be here to talk.