It is through the human voice that we articulate and express our thoughts into words. We all have our own ways of expressing our opinions into words and our voices can reflect our emotions as well. But have you ever pondered on how we can actually put our thoughts into words through the human voice? This article will briefly summarize some of the basics on how we human beings are able to communicate with each other verbally by using our human voice.
The Anatomy of the Human Voice
We cannot create any sound without utilizing our vocal tract. The sound is the basic unit that makes up the human voice. Without the ability to create sound, an individual will be unable to create and express his feeling and thoughts into voice.
The organ that pumps the human voice out
The vocal tract consists of many parts that belong to different organ systems. The lungs are where we source out the air pressure that makes up a sound. The lungs enable the air that we breathe in to come out as sound. Air then is an integral ingredient for us humans to create voices.
This is the rationale why even the most professional singer cannot use his or her voice efficiently in high places. The lungs in high altitudes cannot process airflow and air pressure as well compared to when an individual is located at normal altitudes.
The lungs act as an efficient pump for air passing in and out of the body. People with respiratory difficulties find it difficult to sing or even talk because of the abnormal airflow and passing out of air into the voice box. This is one of the reasons why professional singers or people who uses their voice for their jobs do not find smoking as a good option as a vice. Once the lungs are compromised, the human voice quality is altered as well.
This is well manifested on the tone and the pitch of the voice of an individual with a chronic respiratory problem, such as emphysema.
Compare the voice quality of a person who does not smoke and a person who’s a chronic smoker and you will notice how easily a non-smoker can articulate using words. And observe how a chronic smoker/s difficulty in talking through occasional stops and pauses when he voices out his thoughts and feelings.
The box that produces the human voice
The Larynx or voice box is where the air is pumped out after it has been processed into the lungs. Vocal folds found within the larynx stretch the cords, that in turn creates the audible sound. The musculature of the voice box is responsible of tuning the sound created by the vocal cords. It also adjusts the pitch and tone of a sound according to an individual’s vocal folds.
The size of an individual’s vocal tract also determines the resulting voice pitch. Men tend to have larger vocal tracts so they have low-pitch voice when compared to women.
Human voice articulators
After passing through the voice box, the voice articulators found just above the Larynx interacts with the laryngeal vocal folds to adjust the clarity and volume of the produced sound. Examples of articulators that we constantly use are the tongue, lips, cheek, and even our teeth play an integral role on the clarity of the sound that comes out of our mouths.
Not all the articulators are used when creating voices. For example, ventriloquists use their lungs and their vocal folds in producing human voices. Their ability to clearly voice out words without utilizing all their articulators is a good example of control and mastery of producing the human voice without using all articulators at the same time.
To sum it up the human voice is created by a sufficient and controlled flow of air into lungs. The quality, pitch, and tone are then assimilated and managed in the vocal cords or larynx. The clarity and volume of the human voice are processed by articulators.
This is my voice in paper of how the human voice works. It might not be as technical and in depth as illustrated and explained in Gray’s Anatomy book. But I am confident that my readers were able to get a clearer picture through simple and comprehensive explanations of how the human voice works.