The core of sound and voice production is vibrations, which is one reason why your voice may sound louder to yourself than it does to others. When we talk, we are producing sounds not only through the air but also through what is known as bone conduction, which is the vibration of your skull. Because sound is vibration, it is normal to feel your voice vibrate when you speak. Some people, however, may experience a higher than normal level of vibration in their speaking voice, which can affect the clarity of their speech as well as their confidence.
Significant vibration in the voice in some cases can be diagnosed as a voice disorder. There is a wide range of reasons why someone may develop a voice problem. When diagnosing and treating voice disorders, doctors who specialize in ear, nose, and throat disorders typically work in conjunction with speech and language pathologists.
If you want to learn more about voice disorders, vocal vibrations, and how speech therapy can help, get started by scheduling your free introductory call today!
Why Does My Voice Sound like it’s Vibrating? Why Do Some People’s Voices Vibrate?
The larynx (also referred to as the voice box) is made up of muscle, cartilage, and mucous membranes that are found at the top of the trachea and at the base of the tongue. The vocal cords are comprised of a pair of highly flexible bands of muscle that sit at the entrance to the trachea. Sound is created when the vocal cords vibrate, the air is forced out through the larynx, and combines with the process of bone conduction. The vocal cords also play the important function of working to close the larynx when we swallow, which prevents the inhalation of food or liquids.
Sometimes the vocal cords become inflamed, develop growths or nodules, or in some cases, become paralyzed. When these situations occur, the vocal cords are unable to work effectively and this can lead to the development of a voice disorder.
What Are Some Examples of Voice Disorders?
Some of the most commonly treated voice disorders are:
- Muscle Tension Dysphonia
- Vocal Cord Weakness or Paralysis
- Neurological Voice Disorders, such as spasmodic dysphonia
- Polyps, Nodules, or Cysts on the Surface of the Vocal Cords (also referred to as noncancerous lesions)
- Precancerous and Cancerous Lesions
Whether you have been diagnosed with a specific voice disorder or are simply looking to improve your speech, language, and communication skills, getting started with speech therapy is as simple as scheduling your free introductory call with Great Speech!
How Do You Fix a Vibrating Voice? How Do I Stop my Voice From Shaking When Talking?
There are a few exercises and techniques you can try if you are struggling with an overly shaky or vibrating voice.
Practicing Your Breathing – Practice breathing from your diaphragm, which will help you gain more control over your breath and speech production. Try looking at yourself in a mirror as you take deep breaths, making sure to keep your shoulders down and breathing from your diaphragm, which sits at the base of your lungs. While this may seem very simple and straightforward, practicing this can make a significant difference in the sound quality of your voice and the way you speak. The diaphragm is a muscle just like any other in the body, and so it needs exercise and strengthening to work optimally. As it gets stronger, controlling your voice (and any shakiness) will become easier as a strong voice depends on strong and steady breathing.
Diaphragm Strengthening Exercises – Beyond proper breathing techniques, it is important to further strengthen your diaphragm. Try wrapping a towel around your waist, just below your ribs. Practice breathing in and trying to move or push the towel outward without allowing your chest or shoulders to rise. As you slowly breathe out, say “ahhhh” and repeat for 10 breaths. You’ll notice as you do this, that it becomes easier to speak steadily and loudly. You can also practice saying ‘ahhh’ as you exhale at a louder and then quieter volume, as well as taking shallow breaths from your chest to contrast the differing sounds.
Practice your Hissing – Try using a hissing sound as you exhale in an effort to effectively pace your breath. Breathe in deeply using your diaphragm, and make a hissing sound as you push the air out through your teeth. Be sure you are standing tall and straight as you practice this. Repeat this exercise 10 times, as you practice controlling the speed at which you release your breath. This is another great way to strengthen your diaphragm and gain control over your breathing and voice production.
How Does Speech Therapy Help with a Vibrating Voice?
For many people, a vibrating or shaky voice can cause a great amount of frustration and sometimes embarrassment. Whether you are engaging in a one-on-one conversation or doing some public speaking, an overly shaky voice can make it difficult to express yourself and be understood by others. Spending time practicing and strengthening your voice with an experienced speech and language pathologist is the best way to steady your speaking voice and increase your confidence. Your speech therapist will work with you and support you, as well as instruct you on how to stabilize your voice and reduce any shakiness. Your speech therapist may use strategies known as voice therapy or resonant voice training which helps to increase awareness of the vibratory sensations that are experienced when speaking, as well as the pace of breath and the flow of air.
A vibrating or shaky voice can be greatly improved through speech therapy. Taking control of your speech abilities and working towards your goals with a speech therapist is the best way to improve the quality and tone of your voice as well as increase your confidence and encourage you to explore new situations. Get started on your path to clearer speech by scheduling your free introductory call today!