How nice it is to hear from your ear, nose and throat doctor, that your vocal folds are clear, especially when you suffer from vocal disorders such as hoarseness with no apparent reason, or when you find it harder to produce your usual voice.
Treatment of Vocal Disorders
The trouble is that “clear vocal folds” doesn’t mean the end of your annoying daily vocal disorders, once you already have them.
Sometimes, hoarseness and vocal folds weakness result from serious vocal folds damage, such as edema, cysts, warts, bleeding etc. However, it often has other causes, such as the malfunction of your muscle, mucous, or nervous systems. It may also be the result from other bodily systems and organs disorders, such as under-active thyroid gland; inflammatory conditions; allergies; excessive phlegm; acid reflux; and vocal fold spasm. Another major cause is tension, before and during hoarseness, which makes matters worse by further contracting your vocal folds.
The good news is that there are several simple rules, which, if followed, can save your vocal folds from pain, weakness and discomfort, and you, from compromising your vocal career.
These roles are:
- Avoid over-straining your vocal muscles:
- Practice abdominal and pelvic breathing support. When singing, also use rib cage and torso muscles support.
- Make sure your neck muscles are not too tense;
- Make sure your chin is not protruding too forward, in order to avoid excessive vocal muscles tension.
- If you suffer vocal difficulties, speak slower, and softer, not too intensely, but without whispering, in a slightly fluffy tone.
- Strictly avoid the following:
- Throat-clearing and coughing; If you have to cough or clear your throat, make it mild, with a little more airflow to soften the impact on your vocal cords. If necessary, use sound amplifiers.
- make sure to have a vocal rest during vocal stress or difficulty:
- Have a 15-minute vocal rest per every hour of intense vocal effort.
- Have a vocal rest when you feel discomfort in your throat
- Perform one or several of the following vocal cord release exercises, several times a day:
- The straw exercise: hum, lip-roll or gargle a little water through a straw, making a mild sound which does not strain your vocal cords, or any other exercise which involves mild use of your vocal cords. perform these exercises between a few seconds and a few minutes at a time.
- Gradually increase the effort you make when perform these exercises.
- Gradually increase your voice intensity: imagine your voice is a motorcycle engine and you are pressing the acceleration pedal. For a stronger effect, you can even make an accelerating motor sound. Do not perform them if you suffer any discomfort!
- Tongue release exercises: loosely attach the tip of your tongue to your fore teeth, and pronounce a single vowel, such as “ah”; or, try to speak while keeping the tip of your tongue next to your fore teeth and your jaw dropped, in a yawn-like manner. Make sure your tongue is lax. When you stretch your tongue forwards, you open your epiglottis, allowing undisturbed airflow, and vocal folds closure with no additional pressure. This way, you gently massage your vocal folds. Repeat this exercise between several seconds and several minutes. In addition, you should also perform other tongue release exercise, described in our manuals.
- Vocalize with your nose closed (you can use TMRG nose clip for that), in order to enhance front and sinuses cavities resonance, as well as enhance your voice intensity and make the airflow circulate.
Warning: do not exercise in case of vocal fold area inflammation, bleeding or after a surgery of that area!
- Use TMRG natural vocal solutions:
- TMRG Classic Solution and TMRG Classic Spray: quickens your vocal folds recovery, and increases your vocal clarity.
- TMRG Synergy Oil: clears the vocal folds area of excessive acidity and phlegm and enhances blood circulation
- TMRG Voice Powder: lubricates and elasticizes your vocal cords
In vocal hygiene, the best way is prevention, through healthy lifestyle and exercises. In case of vocal disorders, use the most suitable combination of exercises and natural solutions to treat the disorder, regain your full vocal quality and power, and prevent vocal disorders recurrence.
Keeping your voice safer and sound,
TMRG Voice Specialist