British singer-songwriter, Adele had a big night last Sunday at the Grammy Awards show. The sultry singer is known for her heartfelt lyrics and powerhouse voice, and she took home six Grammy’s including best song, record and album of the year.
Adele’s biggest feat of the night was perhaps her performance of her hit “Rolling in the Deep,” which was her first performance since having vocal cord surgery. Last November the singer had to cancel several tour dates due to having the surgery to remove a polyp from her vocal cord. According to an article posted by CBS News, polyps occur on vocal cords due to abuse of the voice and often resemble blister-like lesions or bumps on the vocal cord. Side affects from polyps include a rough or scratchy voice, a feeling of a lump in the throat, neck pain, vocal fatigue and a decrease in pitch range. Adele’s surgery was minimally invasive, however the recovery period was quite extensive. Dr. Steven Zeitels from the Center for Laryngeal Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital, who performed Adele’s surgery ordered her to refrain from using her voice for two months after the procedure. The singer also had to give up her smoking habit following the surgery because smoking can cause severe swelling of the vocal cords due to the heat of the smoke.
Adele’s performance last Sunday showed the world that she has recovered well from surgery, but thankfully surgery isn’t the only option for someone with polyps on their vocal cords. Many times, voice therapy is used for people who have less severe polyps. According to ASHA voice therapy includes teaching good vocal hygiene and reducing abusive vocal behaviors. Stress reduction techniques and relaxation exercises are often taught as well, which helps produce a more effective voice for communicating.
At our clinic our therapists use a holistic approach to voice therapy, and are trained in specialized programs such as Lessac-Madsen Resonant Voice Training and Vocal Function Exercises. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your voice and whether or not voice therapy is a good option for you or a loved one, please contact one of our three offices.