Jump to content

How bad does abuse have to be to cause nodules?

Rate this topic


eggplantbren
 Share

Recommended Posts

I know there's probably a lot of individual variation, but I'm curious as to how bad vocal abuse or poor technique has to be, and for how long, to cause nodules. The reasons I ask are curiosity, and the fact that I've been singing regularly with fairly poor technique for about 3 years.

I've never lost my voice, and at worst, after a bad session, it feels a little used and like I should stop. But it never really "hurts". And recently I've found that in the middle part of my range the tones sound dirty like there's mucus or something. This happens on the same notes that I usually have trouble with (around E4) so it could equally well be poor technique.

What do you think? Am I being paranoid for worrying about this?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well at E4 you are suppose to bridge into your head voice. If your struggling and trying to pull those notes from your chest voice that would explain part of your problem. I know that I created about 20 years of bad habits and pushed my voice hard and I did not create nodules on my vocal folds/chords.

I think your problem may be more of a training issue than a physical issue. But I am not a expect so what do I know lol.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

eggplantbren,

A rule of thump is to not sing when you are hoarse. 95% of the singers who get hoarse are because of constrictions around the vocal folds which prevents them from vibrating freely. If you keep singing whit those constrictions you'll "rub" the vocal folds together much harder than normal, and that will create edema which can lead to polyps (like a blister). And if you continue you'll most likely develop nodules (calluses). It's one of the bodys reaction to mechanical stress.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What's the definition of hoarseness? I'm not sure I've ever really experienced anything more than mild hoarseness, where it takes just a little more effort to speak. But this has only happened once or twice.

Martin H, even if you stay in the same mode you still have to not freak out when the resonance shifts, as even CVT acknowledges ;-) I can give you a page number if you want ;-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is a genetic component to this as well. There is a percentage of the population where the folds are more sensitive than normal, and a percentage that is less sensitive. The same amount of abuse could have different results on two different singers.

Depending on the abuse, and the singer, it can happen relatively quickly. I had a student win a scholarship to a prestigious performing arts school. They technique they forced her to use was so stressful she began to develop nodules within six weeks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know there's probably a lot of individual variation, but I'm curious as to how bad vocal abuse or poor technique has to be, and for how long, to cause nodules. The reasons I ask are curiosity, and the fact that I've been singing regularly with fairly poor technique for about 3 years.

I've never lost my voice, and at worst, after a bad session, it feels a little used and like I should stop. But it never really "hurts". And recently I've found that in the middle part of my range the tones sound dirty like there's mucus or something. This happens on the same notes that I usually have trouble with (around E4) so it could equally well be poor technique.

What do you think? Am I being paranoid for worrying about this?

when you said mucus don't forget about diet and allergies, reflux and such.

i have those issues and when you siren you run into the mucus and it feels like the tone is breaking up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is said that Freddie Mercury had nodules but sang anyway, not damaging himself and he died from other problems before nodules could become a problem for him.

It should also be noted that what developes a callus can lose it if the use of that area changes. For example, you quit playing guitar and the calluses on your fingering hand (left hand for most people) go away, eventually. I think vocal folds heal quicker than fingertips. Even if they didn't, if you can stop whatever it is that was giving you calluses, the calluses will eventually go away. For a pro singer, it has been sometimes deemed worthy to have surgery to remove them, even though the singer spends 4 to 6 weeks recovering from the surgery. This can make the difference between finishing a monster tour and not finishing it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think vocal folds heal quicker than fingertips.

They're (supposed to be) hydrated and moistered all the time which is (I believe) a major component of healing in this sort of problems.

As for nodules, it depends on people and what they are doing. But it is mostly reversible.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well at E4 you are suppose to bridge into your head voice. If your struggling and trying to pull those notes from your chest voice that would explain part of your problem. I know that I created about 20 years of bad habits and pushed my voice hard and I did not create nodules on my vocal folds/chords.

I think your problem may be more of a training issue than a physical issue. But I am not a expect so what do I know lol.

Mazzith: From my perspective, its not about resonance but about persistent vocal fold friction. Even correct singing, if overdone too much, will cause vocal fold irritation. If fold hydration is insufficient, this will be worsened. If phonation in speech is persistently forced in the low or mid range, with heavy registration, that will add to the irritation.

I've known three very active female singers of high school age that simply used their voices too much every day, or too heavily, and got nodes requiring voice therapy. They all sang well in head voice, but their combined speech and singing use was too much. All of them recovered, and adjusted their voice-use habits so that the issue went away, and did not require surgery.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What's the definition of hoarseness? I'm not sure I've ever really experienced anything more than mild hoarseness, where it takes just a little more effort to speak. But this has only happened once or twice.

Martin H, even if you stay in the same mode you still have to not freak out when the resonance shifts, as even CVT acknowledges ;-) I can give you a page number if you want ;-)

It's very individual how one experiences hoarsness. But very often you can hear it in regards to a deeper voice, breathier, loss of notes in part of the range etc. In your case I wouldn't worry about nodules at all. Though if you are still worried you should go and see an ENT. :)

In regards to the "resonance" shifts,. Are you refering to the sensations when the sympathetic vibrations diminishes in the chest region? If so, then this has nothing to do with "bridging" as usually defined. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

HolaChau: Here is a good starting point for understanding:

http://www.asha.org/public/speech/disorders/NodulesPolyps.htm

steve, i read in some book that nodules are not that easy to get. the author stated the incidence is overblown and nodules are ofter used as a scare tactic to keep voice students on the leach for more lesson revenue.

are they easy to get or is it more of the singer's abuse of his own voice much like an alcoholic's abuse of liquor?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

steve, i read in some book that nodules are not that easy to get. the author stated the incidence is overblown and nodules are ofter used as a scare tactic to keep voice students on the leach for more lesson revenue.

are they easy to get or is it more of the singer's abuse of his own voice much like an alcoholic's abuse of liquor?

Bob: I think you already have my answer to this. Nodes can be easily seen in a laryngeal exam.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I disagree with that. You are not supposed to "bridge" into headvoice. It's a personal choice if you wish to do that. :)

Well yeah it's a choice of do I want to struggle through it or try something that works for some people. If you're a student if Robert Lunte, like myself at E4 is where we make the transition from chest voice to a headier placement. This allows us to reach higher notes without all of the choking. =)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well yeah it's a choice of do I want to struggle through it or try something that works for some people. If you're a student if Robert Lunte, like myself at E4 is where we make the transition from chest voice to a headier placement. This allows us to reach higher notes without all of the choking. =)

I guess it's a matter of what technique you use and how good you are at it. I don't struggle or choke when singing past E4. And I don't "bridge" as described by Robert, only if I choose to do so. We have talked a lot about the issue in this thread:

http://www.punbb-hosting.com/forums/themodernvocalist/viewpoll.php?id=1324

:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd wager that you do the same thing as Robert teaches but you use different terminology to make it more yours no?

I guess in the end if you get the results that is all what matters. /shrug

No, I don't do the same thing Robert does. I can choose to, but I rarely don't.

Here is what Robert normally does:

http://www.box.net/shared/vpg5juzy93

Here is what I normally do:

http://www.box.net/shared/tupfjvr1kx

I totally agree, that in the end it doesn't matter - just as long as you reach your singing goals. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No, I don't do the same thing Robert does. I can choose to, but I rarely don't.

Here is what Robert normally does:

http://www.box.net/shared/vpg5juzy93

Here is what I normally do:

http://www.box.net/shared/tupfjvr1kx

I totally agree, that in the end it doesn't matter - just as long as you reach your singing goals. :)

i agree too. i slide easier doing overdrive style than rob's way for some reason...lol!!.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No, I don't do the same thing Robert does. I can choose to, but I rarely don't.

Here is what Robert normally does:

http://www.box.net/shared/vpg5juzy93

Here is what I normally do:

http://www.box.net/shared/tupfjvr1kx

I totally agree, that in the end it doesn't matter - just as long as you reach your singing goals. :)

How you did Robert's style it sounds off, not as powerful as it should.

http://www.box.net/shared/dc9dkb74px

That is how your suppose to do the exercise, slow steady and very smooth. (while maintaining formant and correct vowel)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...