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Persistent vocal crack/buzz

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I am having a persistent problem with my voice cracking or buzzing. It started about 2 years ago and has been getting worse, which means that I had been singing less and less. It seems like it was in the higher notes, but now I am better in the higher and more problems lower, though it can happen at any point. It's not like a crack that shoots and is over, this stays sort of as a buzzing sound. I've sung a lot (for me) the last few weeks and after singing the last two nights the right side of my vocal cords are sore - sort of into my ear. The crack/buzz may be for a second or it may last for the whole song...ugh!

I don't smoke, no alcohol, no allergies, no sinus problems, reflux rarely, no meds, good oral health (I'm a hygienist)...

It has really sucked all the enjoyment out of singing and makes me want to quit.

Does this make sense? Any idea what it is or what to do?

Thanks, April

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I'm not a health professional in any sense or meaning. Just an electrician from Texas. It sounds like you have some infection or some damage. Is there any way you could upload a sample of what you are talking about? We do have vocal health professionals here, as well as a number of singers who have suffered similar and not so similar maladies.

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health professionals canNOT diagnose from sound alone, it's actually stated that way in our licensing ....

too many medical problems in the voice can sound pretty much the same but treatment might be very different.

just FYI..

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This problems is so strange I'm probably not communicating it well enough, but after searching I still can't find anyone who seems to have any idea what I'm talking about. My health ins plan just changed, so I will probably wait a bit and find an ENT and hope I can communicate more clearly to them.

Thanks for the suggestion of uploading a recording. If nothing else comes about I may try it.

Happy New Year!

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aeborden, it depends on where you are. In a country with socialised medicine, such as Canada, England, or France, you could be waiting a while. Your ailment would be considered not life-threatening. We call them death panels but essentially a beauracrat somewhere decides whether or not you need medical care based on a list of criteria. Govt. defined triage, as it were. Even deadly maladies take a while because the system is bogged down by people seeking "free" healthcare because they have a cold that could be treated by chicken soup and bed rest. I know of a case of a woman in canada who had cancer and was put on a list to wait 8 weeks for radiation treatment. She could have been dead in 8 weeks. So, she cashed in all of her assets, came to America and was in treatment within 24 hours. However, this was before we passed the Senate version of Obama's healthcare bill. In America, it has caused premiums to increase. And a number of insurance companies have dropped child only policies and another number of insurance companies have simply closed down. Here's why. Thanks to fed regulation, insurance companies cannot carry policies across state lines or from company to company. If you leave a state or a job, you have to start insurance all over again. Feasibly, you could have started an HSA when young. HSA - health service account. It works like a managed investment fund, like a 401 (k). But fed regulations say that you can only have one if you already pay a high premium insurance. And, you can only build the HSA to a total of $3,000 contributions per year. So, you are not allowed to save enough for your own health care. Not to mention, thanks to fed regulation, you have to wait until specific times of the year to enroll in insurance at an employer. You could be working 3 to 6 months before being in the "eligible" window.

The Obama healthcare plan, as passed, allows the government to assess an 8% tax on the gross profits of a company, per year, to fund the socialized healthcare. A company is faced with few options. In days of old with less insurance regulation, companies could afford to participate in health care programs. They would pay part of your premium. Now, with higher premiums and the automatic 8 % tax levy, they cannot afford both. So, they will drop the private plan you could have had. Also, in that bill, you, the worker, if you choose not to enlist in the socialized healthcare program can be prosecuted and put in federal prison (which usually does not grant parole) and fined up to $25,000 per year that you do not enroll.

The Obama healthcare plan has also put a limit on what they pay doctors. It's called bundling. They will compensate a doctor only so much per year, no more. So, many doctors are retiring and not mentoring anyone to take their place.

And the money taken from you by the govt is going to pay for the crackhead who goes to the hospital to score drugs. He can't be denied because some people believe that healthcare is a "right."

And the crackhead gets seen before you do because he was in line, first.

Back in the days of old, you went to the doctor if it was serious enough. And you paid him however. With a chicken, work on his house, money, barter. All without insurance. And often was the case that the doctor had another profession, such as barber. All without govt insurance.

Many insurance companies will simply fail as people cannot afford both private health premiums and the government tax. This will also cause many doctors to go out of business because they cannot pay their overhead with the bundled dispensation from the govt. The govt manages healthcare by rationing, not by lowering costs.

Sorry to digress but you might get quicker treatment if there is a way for you to raise the money on your own. Which might be impossible, I know. I haven't had insurance in over a year. I will either drop dead of something, or I won't and I can't worry about it until then.

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This problems is so strange I'm probably not communicating it well enough, but after searching I still can't find anyone who seems to have any idea what I'm talking about. My health ins plan just changed, so I will probably wait a bit and find an ENT and hope I can communicate more clearly to them.

Aeborden: IMO going to the ENT is a very good step, though even a GP is going to be able to look in your upper throat and see redness that can result from drainage, if either is present.

That it has been persistent in your voice, and has now 'moved' to another range, may be completely unrelated to the soreness you have recently experienced. Was the buzziness always accompanied by the soreness?

Some kinds of buzziness, while an annoyance if unexpected or undesired, are nonetheless healthy vocalism. By this I mean that sometimes, normal high frequency content of the voice is experienced by the singer this way, though to the listener the awareness of the buzz is much less, or considered reasonable.

Of particular interest in this is the manner in which you experience the 'buzziness'. Specifically, when it appears, is it equally in both ears, just one, or is the buzz more of a vibration sensation than an audible sound?

You mentioned in your topic title a 'crack'. Could you write a bit about that.

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