Celebrated every year on 16 April, today is World Voice Day, a day to recognise the importance of your voice, the most important tool for communication in any given situation in your life. Whether it is with your family or with your colleagues at work, it is important to remember, as the theme reflects, “Your Voice Counts!” The main idea is to get people celebrating healthy voices and the value it has in society and your workplace. We listen to voices all the time, from the TV (especially new hit show The Voice) to the voices we hear everyday in music, without the use of our voices, no one would be able to communicate. In our contemporary society in which everyone is engaged in every social media, from Facebook, Twitter and texting, the voice perhaps does not receive the recognition it deserves.
The day encourages everyone, from men to women, to the young and old to focus and assess their health vocally, taking action in improving their voice habits. Our vocal health is one we don’t take much notice of, and so Otolaryngologists – head and neck surgeons and voice health professionals are taking great care in stressing how significant your voice is to you.
The idea for World Voice Day first began in Brazil, and then began to be recognised in the USA, and soon spread around the world. The American Academy of Otolaryngology, the Head and Neck Surgery has been sponsoring the U.S observance of the day since it first began being celebrated, in 2002.
It has been noted that 35% of the population use their voice as one of their main means of performing their job every day. Survey’s have discovered that teachers have been experiencing the most problems to their voice. The ATL survey in 2011 discovered that 68% of primary school teachers have suffered voice problems, which they believe to have been a result of their job. As a result, the ATL are campaigning that all educational professionals are given Voice Training and voice care in all teacher and lecturer training causes, teaching them how to use their voice more effectively.
It is important to reflect upon the damage certain substances can do to your voice, such as alcohol and tabacco abuse, which can do severe damage to your voice. The result can range from painful strained vocal cords to dangerous neck and head cancers. Smoking is the top risk factor for cancer of the larynx, (voice box). Some of the things which can prevent your voice from being damaged is to drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep hydrated, and don’t smoke. It is also important to avoid straining your voice in any way, as screaming and shouting can damage your vocal cords significantly.
If you are celebrating World Voice Day in any way, or holding an event, get in touch and tell us about it. For more information and guidance on World Voice Day, visit these useful websites; here and here.
So sing it loud and proud today and look after your voice.