This is larynx! Larynx lives in your throat and does lots of important stuff, like keeping things that aren’t air from getting in your lungs, and helping you cough when something wrong does get in there. Larynx has two shiny white strips–see them?–that close off the top of the trachea, the tube that leads to the lungs! Those strips are called the vocal chords, because they also help you speak! When the vocal chords stretch tight and almost closed, they let you vibrate air into tones that you can shape with your mouth into words! Try it now; say, “thank you” to larynx, because without larynx you wouldn’t be able to say “thank you” at all!

FUN FACTS: Larynx gets its name from the Greek word for “throat!”


OH NO! What happened to larynx?

It’s gotten sick! Larynx has acute laryngitis. That means that larynx has gotten so swollen that it can’t pull tight and vibrate the air anymore! See how the shiny white vocal chords have turned red and everything has gotten all puffy? Poor larynx! Acute laryngitis can be caused by many things, but it usually happens when you have a cold. If you get acute laryngitis, the best thing for it is to let your larynx rest! Just don’t talk until it goes away!

FUN FACTS: You can also get acute laryngitis by using your voice too much, like by cheering at a ballgame!

DID YOU KNOW? That the author of this website has had acute laryngitis for three days now? It’s true! He has barely spoken to anyone! He’s just been staying at home eating leftover Halloween candy and playing Metroid! These are also very good things to do if you get acute laryngitis!