Know Thyself

What kind of voice user are you?

My job requires me to talk a lot.....

You are an "occupational" voice user. Other terms that may be used to describe your voice use are "elite voice user" or "professional voice user". This includes lawyers, teachers, clergy, coaches, salespeople, telemarketers, waitstaff, childcare providers, youth ministers, receptionists, business executives, and others.

Because of your career demands, you may experience chronic fatigue, vocal discomfort, throat tension, lost days of work, and reduced quality of life due to inefficient voice use. A voice problem that is not treated may develop into a voice pathology. Many of these outcomes can be prevented. Early detection and treatment of a voice problem is important, so get to know your voice in depth.

It is essential for occupational voice users to care for their voices daily through healthy speaking voice use, adequate hydration, and periods of vocal rest and recovery. Integrating vocal warm-up and cool down into the daily routine can have major benefits and only takes 15 minutes or less a day!

If you need help developing a healthier and stronger voice for your career, go to "Get Help" to find your team.

I am a singer, actor, or media personality....

You are an elite/professional voice user. Your career requires high vocal demands on a daily basis, often taking the voice to the extremes of the range requiring specialized skills and vocal stamina. The color, quality, and strength of your voice is essential to your career image and hirability.

Like elite athletes, professional voice users can experience vocal injury due to the high-level demands placed on the voice. Vocal injury is a risk of the profession. While there are many ways to prevent injury, professional voice users should not be made to feel ashamed or guilty when injury occurs. Knowledge is power! Get to know your voice so that potential voice problems are treated early.

If you are in a high-level voice career or are training to enter the world of professional vocal athletes, it is essential that you build the skills, stamina, and daily habits needed to support the demands placed on your voice. Additionally, you should build relationships with a trusted voice teacher, laryngologist, speech-laguage pathologist, and/or singing voice specialist to help keep you in top condition.

Using my voice for leisure activities is an important part of my life...

Do you love to sing in your religious organization, community choir, or local theatre? Love to tell stories, ready poetry, or participate in community theatre? Avocational voice users are individuals who may not work in careers that demand heavy voice use, but depend on their voices for activities that enhance their quality of life. Quality of life is important and a healthy voice plays a vital role in a full life.

If chronic vocal fatigue, voice/throat discomfort, hoarseness, or other concerns are getting in the way of your enjoyment of singing or speaking, there is help! Click on "Get Help" to find voice care professionals who are qualified to evaluate your situation and get you on the path to a stronger, healthier voice.