Voice problems in professional voice users
(singers, actors etc.)

Do you use your voice professionally?

Occupational voice disorders can occur when there is a mismatch between the vocal performance required and the vocal ability. This is most often the case when people speak too long or too loudly. Speaking in noise is particularly stressful. This often leads to an unphysiological increase in the pitch of the speaking voice and hoarseness.
Professions with high vocal stress include teachers, educators, lawyers, coaches, and telephone operators. Teachers also often underestimate the strain on their voices at work. “The voice has to withstand up to five hours of stress every day,” explains Prof. Markus Hess. “If a teacher can no longer do this, he or she needs help. As a preventive measure, voice and speech training is recommended to improve vocal technique. Vocal hygiene measures and avoiding unfavorable environmental conditions with dry air or too much noise are also important. Some professions require a phoniatric evaluation (“aptitude test”) before beginning training.

We recommend that teachers, educators, professional speakers and singers undergo a vocal examination every 1-2 years.

Dysphonia in professional voice users is quite frequent and may span from occasional hoarseness and limited voice output up to permanent severe hoarseness. In many cases, the vocal (over)load cannot be compensated and relaxation time after voice use is too short. However, there might be deficits in functional, organic and psychodynamic aspects.

Professional voice disorders need early intervention for best long term therapeutic results. A comprehensive assessment in a multidisciplinary setting (physician, logopedist, singing coach, osteopath) is warranted. Our clinic offers this kind of comprehensive examination, and, if needed, a spectrum of therapeutic options.

Many professions may include:
  • Singers
  • Actors
  • Teachers
  • Clergy
  • Salespersons
  • Coaches
  • Broadcasters
  • Auctioneers
  • Cheerleaders
  • Choreographers
  • Lawyers
  • Judges