When it comes to caring for your voice there are a number of key points to keep in mind to ensure that you are doing what you can on a day to day basis to help avoid voice disorders such as: nodules caused by vocal abuse. This does not necessarily mean you have to talk less, it is more about using the correct vocal quality to maintain a healthy voice.
Here are a few everyday voice care tips to keep in mind.
- Avoid shouting, screaming and using a tense speaking voice. Use a voice amplification tool when necessary.
- Avoid forceful coughing and avoid throat clearing. If it is necessary, do it as gently as possible.
- Keep your larynx and vocal tract hydrated by drinking plenty of water and avoid or limit time spent in dry environments such as overheated room and air conditioning.
- Avoid talking over background noise such as: in overcrowded restaurants and bars or over loud machinery.
- Reduce exposure to irritants such as cigarette smoke and excessive caffeine and alcohol consumption.
- Avoid talking when you have an upper respiratory tract infection. Voice rest is particularly important when your vocal muscles are not in their most optimal condition.
- If you plan to talk a lot during the day, warm up your voice before using it a lot.
- Avoid making grunting sounds or noisy vocalisations when lifting or exercising and instead use softer exhalation to promote a more relaxed voice quality.
- Watch out for reflux and see your doctor or an ear nose throat specialist if you suspect that reflux may be present.
- Use appropriate speaking and singing strategies. The most healthy voice to use is one that you are comfortable producing and does not cause pain.
If you have difficulty producing a healthy feeling and sounding voice, see a speech pathologist to instruct you on the appropriate vocal exercises to assist with health voice production.
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This article was written by our Speech Pathologist Ashleigh Fattah who is a Speech Pathology Australia member. If you have voice therapy related questions, make an appointment. We will provide you with simple and effective therapy targeted to your concerns. Contact us today.