Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Speech Cord Granuloma

My speech cord granuloma condition was caused by shouting above a noisy integrated group of young students with their therapists/carers/parents. I honored teaching this YOU & ME Yoga course for this group of 20, when really I should have been tucked up in bed at home getting over such flu condition.

(In point of fact when suffering from flu virus we should never do any bending forward movements, as muscles tense which could damage the back.)

Here are a few lessons I learned:

  1. I need to listen to my body’s warning signals to prevent potential serious consequences. 
  2. If I don’t look after myself, I cannot expect anyone else to. 
  3. Ignoring my cough, sore throat, struggling to speak and forcing my voice unnaturally was absolutely stupid. 
  4. It is wrong to spread germs. 
As a result, I was left with a chronic speech problem and thought I would never be able to teach again.

Within a few weeks I was diagnosed with speech cord granuloma and threatened with an operation to remove the granules with prospect of only 37% success rate.

So what next?

First, I was informed by the NHS consultant there was a 4-month waiting list. So I asked him about going private and he replied he could fit me in the following Tuesday, which I was duly booked in for. Then I remembered what I preach to others about being positive towards ones own health and doing yoga to help combat disease. So I chose to make further enquiries and received the following advice:

  • My doctor recommended Speech Therapy, which I attended for 6 weekly sessions to help prevent straining my voice.*
  • The oesteopath/cranialogist/healer Charles Tisdale of Dacrelands Clinic, Lancaster, where I had my office, told me to cancel the operation. To have instead weekly treatments of cranial sacral therapy and acupuncture, as well as homeopathy remedies, all of which I benefitted from.
  • I contacted Swami Pragumurti of Satyananda Yoga Centre, London who told me to energise my throat by daily chanting the ‘OM’, the sound ‘Eee’, humming the sound ‘Mm’ and to do the Alternate Nostril Breathing which I enjoyed and benefitted from doing.

My Yoga Therapy:

In addition to chanting and practicing Alternate Nostril Breathing for 10 minutes everyday, I also practiced my yoga system involving a sequence of Whole-Body-Movements and Yoga Nidra (deep relaxation) for a further 20 minutes. This was my second time round of intense yoga therapy - with conviction - for a ‘new chance and lease of life’ since my serious car accident some 30 years before.

Five months into my therapy, I wanted to know if my prospects of teaching again had changed. As I was feeling much less tensed when speaking and somewhat empowered by looking after myself with all the alternative treatments and yoga practice. So I went to see a private ENT (Ear, Nose, Throat) surgeon for a second opinion, who actually diagnosed no trace of any granuloma on my speech cords whatsoever. The consultant, like me, thought there being ‘no trace’ was remarkable. I did of course tell him of the alternative therapies I’d had and about my yoga practice. He responded by saying, “Your throat had healed because you had allowed it to be well.” Seemingly yet another lesson: to desire health and allow it to be so!

* Next post to follow: Techniques to help the Voice and Throat

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