You know the problem; however, you don’t know how to solve it. You have chronic hoarseness or a pain in your throat. Possibly you are losing your voice by the end of the day. And, one of the qualifiers with the above problems is that you are not sick. What is happening and what can you do about it?

1. The problem is known as vocal abuse.
2. It is caused by overuse of your speaking and/or singing voice.
3. It cannot go away on its own unless you stop talking and/or singing.

The difficulty with vocal abuse is that drugs, tips, tricks, or hypnosis will not cure the discomfort. And, unless you change how you use your voice, it is here to stay. There is also the possibility that, in continuing the same practices with your voice, it will lead to permanent damage to your vocal folds (cords).

That last statement should make you sit up and take notice because vocal abuse is not something you can afford to ignore if you place any value on your ability to speak.

What is fascinating about vocal abuse today is that it is increasing in prevalence than in decades past. And, the reason is three-fold:

1. We speak more loudly because we are being subjected to louder background noise;
2. We sleep less; and,
3. We consume a less healthy diet.

Your vocal folds are an organ. They respond to a good night’s sleep and a good diet. But in addition to those two conditions, you probably push your sound from your throat and voice box instead of powering your voice by means of your chest cavity.

Once you make the change, however, in which you use your chest as your primary sounding board or amplifier, you will notice an immediate change in how your voice sounds as well as how much easier it is to speak or to sing for greater lengths of time. Another benefit of using your chest cavity as your primary resonator is that you will be able to speak with more volume without shouting. Known as projection, this technique is only possible if the above condition is met.

Don’t let vocal abuse rule your life. By changing your voice placement, you will discover a voice you didn’t know you have inside of you. Richer, deeper, and more mature in sound, your ‘real’ voice will never have to suffer from vocal abuse again.

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