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Vocal Strain?

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I'm not sure exactly how it happened, but last saturday my voice was feeling very tight, not flexible and loose. I ignored it, thinking it was nothing. That night, while singing, something happened. We have a good bit of sound on stage, but I've never had a problem before dealing with it. After the set, something wasn't right, and when we sang the next morning, felt vocally compromised. Seemed only to have about 1/3 of my voice strength, and my high notes weren't there. Incidentally, I'm a high tenor, and get at least a high C most days.

Not sure what happened, and what to do about it. I've just tried resting the voice (supposed to sing tonight), but it's not all back yet. Almost like I strained it or something. I've really not experienced anything like this before, and I don't seem to have a cold.

Any thoughts?


Rochester, MI

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Hi Chris,

If you do have a bit of strain, a week might not be long enough. When this has happened to me, total vocal rest for nearly two weeks was necessary to regain my voice. You might want to try some low level phonation just to get the folds working slightly, but definitely do not over do it as you could be creating more problems in the long run. As for hitting the high notes, they'll come back when they're ready! If you smoke or drink a lot, cut that back for a while too just to give your body chance to heal. You don't need to have a cold to lose your voice!

Hope this helps and you get your voice back!


Manchester, England.

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Chris --With a sudden change like this, I would recommend a medical exam ASAP with a voice MD (laryngologist) who does videostroboscopy. You could have a vocal hemorrhage, a muscle pull, neuro weakness 'for no reason', a cyst, or something else that needs specialized care.

Travel to another city if you need to, to be seen by someone who knows what's what. If you're not sure where to go, email me directly with your location & I can help find a clinic.

It wont be cheap, but if this is your profession do NOT mess around.

Relatively sudden changes in voice are not to be taken lightly, and the general advice of rest, steam, nutrition & easy warmups may not be adequate.

regards- Joanna

Los Angeles

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