June 13, 2006

Keep your voice young and healthy

Speech is unique to human beings, and voice is a powerful medium. The voice is not only the medium for conveying the message, but also an outlet for expression of feelings. While most of us use voice only for conversing with fellow beings, there are others who need to use their voice a lot for their professions; teachers, clergymen, preachers, singers, actors, dubbing artists, TV presenters to name a few. It is these people who need to take utmost care of their voice so that they don’t develop problems. Like other faculties, age too takes its toll on the voice. Around the age of 45, subtle variations in the voice start occurring in both sexes. In males, the habitual pitch starts to go up and in females it tends to slide down. 

Some dos and don’ts for people who have to use their voice too much* Always drink plenty of water. There is no better medicine than water, as far as vocal cords are concerned.
* If you are a hectic voice user, please find at least one hour everyday for absolute voice rest, while awake.
* Regular breathing exercises are invaluable. Devote at least ½ an hour everyday towards yogic breathing exercises (pranayams).
* Avoid irritants like spicy foods, alcohol and smoking. Excessive tea and coffee are both harmful to the voice.
* Extremes of temperature are not good for vocal cords. Hence avoid very hot and chilled foods. Give up irregular eating habits.
* Frequent clearing of the throat is to be discouraged. Talking very loudly and fast can be very damaging to the vocal apparatus. So is the habit of talking in noisy surroundings.
* Speaking or singing in a low pitch, which is far higher or lower than the optimum pitch is also a commonest type of vocal misuse.
See also: Voice improvement

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  2. Vrinda9:28 AM

    this article is very-well explained. it really helped me a lot.

  3. Chaya9:41 AM

    Do lip or tongue trills in the morning (try it in the shower or on your drive to work) to facilitate better use of airflow and breath. Perform gentle humming and cooing to warm up your voice in the morning.If you do more vocally complex warm-ups too, such as vocal scales, do the simple warm-ups first. Repeat these exercises throughout the day to reduce muscular tension in the neck, shoulders and jaw.
    At the end of the day, perform a cool-down of the voice with similar vocal tasks.


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