Sunday, October 02, 2011

Vocal Strain - The Hobbled Voice

We have a bona-fide theater related injury at the Hobbled Household - Maria is suffering from vocal strain. As much as I like to include pictures in my posts, there is no way (with phone camera) to capture a picture of what vocal strain looks like. There really isn’t much to see.

If she were in the traditional sports, it would be easier to demonstrate injury – and elicit sympathy – with a cast and crutches – or at least a limp.

Mostly it looks like a quiet 14 year old – which I realize is rare. Maria is under doctor’s orders to maintain “vocal rest” which is easier said than done.

Things were going fine for Maria’s voice despite (or because of) three choirs, private voice lessons, and rehearsal for Urinetown five nights a week. Then something happened. After a particularly forceful solo at rehearsal, M reported her throat hurt. After a few days without improvement we consulted with her voice teacher, who recommended a doctor who works with singers. (He is also the father of one of M’s classmates). The ENT observed a thickening on one side of her vocal chords.

Recommendation: “Vocal Rest” – limited (or no) talking. No singing – but she continues to attend U-town rehearsals – but is not singing in the choirs – merely attending – and lip-synching (kidding). Avoid pop (soda for you non-Minnesotans), tomato based stuff – pasta sauces, pizza, etc – and citrus (OJ, etc). She is on Prednisone and an ant-acid to deal with possible acid reflux – which is common among singers because the heavy pushing with their diaphragm can cause the stomach acids to sometimes leak through – further irritating the already injured vocal chords.

I expect the remainder of the weekend to be quiet. I’m sure there will be no whining about homework as that would be a violation of the “vocal rest” protocols.

1 comment:

John G. said...

Vocal CORD not Vocal Chord - The Hobbled Wife corrected me - but I'm too lazy to edit the entire post.