Stephen Mulhern health: Presenter’s ‘shock’ health condition – ‘It was horrible’

GMB: Stephen Mulhern segment has technical blunder

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The 44-year-old has been successful on telly since 1998 and first appeared on screens on CITV. Perhaps one of his most popular appearances was on Britain’s Got Talent’s extra show Britain’s Got More Talent (BMGT). Although axed after 13 years, Stephen was the fresh-faced presenter who “got away with a lot of stuff”. A massive hit with viewers, Stephen’s new show In For A Penny involves various segments that started on BGMT, taking them to the streets of Britain. One time when filming for the spin-off show Stephen suddenly lost his voice, meaning he was absent for four whole days.

For someone in the entertainment industry who relies heavily on their voice to do their job, Stephen’s health was a big concern.

Talking at the time he said: “I literally lost my voice, it was the most frustrating thing ever.

“I went to the doctor and she could clearly hear that I couldn’t talk so she sent me to an ear, nose and throat specialist.

“They put this big camera down my throat and I was told that if I didn’t stop speaking completely for two weeks then I could permanently damage my vocal chords.”

For the first time in over a decade Stephen was forced to take a break from filming BGMT in order to recover.

“So, I couldn’t talk at all,” he said. “Not even a whisper, because apparently that’s even worse than trying to talk. So, for the first time in 12 years I had to miss four days of filming.”

Like a tactic seen in the movies, Stephen had no choice but to start writing things down on a miniature whiteboard in order to avoid permanent damage to his voice.

He added: “The bizarre thing was that I had to start writing things down on a little white board.

“I felt like a right idiot, to be honest, but in the same breath, when you’re told by a specialist, ‘If you don’t listen to what I am telling you, you’ll permanently damage the one thing you need to do your job’.

“It was a real shock, if I’m being honest with you.

“It was horrible,” he said. “I got a lovely message from Ant and Dec, but you just feel like you’re missing a limb.

“I know that sounds ridiculous but because it’s always been us all together, to be missing from that was tough.”

Losing your voice can be worrying. Although it is natural for an individual’s voice to get increasingly croaky or husky when struck with cold or flu, there can be a more serious underlying reason why your voice has disappeared.

WebMD explains that when you talk or sing you use different muscles in your mouth and throat. Just like other muscles in the body, overusing these can lead to fatigue, strain or injury.

Speaking, singing or yelling too much, using a pitch that’s higher or lower than normal when you talk or cradling your phone between your head and shoulder could all be everyday habits that you do that could lead to vocal damage.

On a more serious note, laryngitis causes the voice box and vocal cords in the throat to become irritated or swollen.

During the first three days of the condition the main symptoms are:

  • A hoarse (croaky) voice
  • Sometimes losing your voice
  • An irritating cough that does not go away
  • Always needing to clear your throat
  • A sore throat.

In order to aid recovery the NHS recommends not talking loudly or straining your voice, not smoking and avoiding too much caffeine or alcohol.

About one in three people can get rheumatoid arthritis in their throat and experience loss of voice.

A growth on the vocal cord tissue can also be a sign of cancer of the larynx. It is recommended to see a GP if you have symptoms of laryngitis that don’t improve after two weeks, you find it painful or difficult to swallow, or you keep getting recurring laryngitis or voice problems.

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