The vocal cord or voice box is the main sound producer in human beings. These two compact folds of tissue stretch across the larynx. The larynx is a section of the air passage in the throat. It is located between the back of the tongue and the trachea (windpipe). The larynx is sometimes called the voice box because it contains the vocal cords. The vocal cords stretch and relax by the help of muscles in the larynx. When we breathe, we relax our vocal cords, so they form a V-shaped opening that lets air through Larynx. When we speak, we pull the vocal cords by the attached muscles, narrowing the opening. Then, as we drive air from the lungs through the larynx, the air vibrates the tightened vocal cords and sounds results. The more the cords are stretched, the higher are the sounds produced. The more the cords relax, the lower the sounds.
THE SIZE OF THE LARYNX HELPS IN DETERMINING THE PITCH OF THE VOICE. WOMEN’S VOICES ARE NORMALLY PITCHED HIGHER THAN MEN’S AS THEIR VOCAL CORDS ARE SHORTER.
We use the larynx once we inhale, talk, or swallow. Its outer wall of cartilage creates the region of the front of the neck known as the voice box or Adam’s apple. Every time we inhale, the air enters our mouth or nose, then through the larynx, down the trachea, and into our lungs. When we breathe, moves air and relax through the space between them.
As soon as we speak, the vocal cords tighten up and move closer together. Air from the lungs is forced between them and makes them vibrate, making the sound of our voice. The tongue, lips, and teeth form this sound into words. Another name of the larynx is voice box.
The vocal cords are composed of folding of 3 distinct tissues. The outer layer is the squamous, non-keratinizing epithelium. Below this is the superficial layer of the lamina propria, a gel such as coating, which permits the fold to vibrate and produce sound. The vocalis and thyroarytenoid muscles make up the deepest part.
The springs are located within the larynx at the peak of the trachea. They’re attached posteriorly to the arytenoid cartilages, and anteriorly to the thyroid gland. They’re a part of the glottis which includes the rima glottidis. Their borders are connected to muscle in the larynx while their edges, or margins, are free forming the opening.
They are constructed from the epithelium. However, they have a few muscle fibres, namely the vocalis muscle which tightens the front region of the ligament close to the thyroid cartilage. They are pearly white in colour and are flat triangular bands. Above both sides of this glottis are both vestibular folds and even false vocal folds which have a little sac involving them.
If liquid or food does enter the trachea and connections the vocal folds, it causes a cough reflex to expel the matter to prevent pulmonary aspiration.
Males and females have different size of the vocal cord. Adult male voices are usually lower-pitched as they have a thick and long vocal cord, while children’s voice boxes are much shorter than older people. The thickness and length between males and females cause a gap in pitch. Additionally, genetic factors cause variations involving members of the same gender, with males and females voices being categorized to voice types.