Singing Improves Voice and Swallow Impairment in Parkinson's Patients

Singing as a therapeutic strategy may be a viable treatment for voice, respiratory, and swallow impairment in persons with PD. Singing shares many elements in common with voice production and targets the musculature involved in respiratory control and swallow. Both voice and singing use the larynx as the primary sound source with the respiratory system serving as the pressure generator for vocal fold initiation and vibration.19 Singing is generally considered to be a more sustained form of speech where greater emphasis is placed on rhythm, tempo, and pitch modulation, and which requires increased respiratory control requiring greater vocal control and increased respiratory muscle strength.20-22 Moreover, singing enhances QOL and well-being in healthy populations and is perceived by persons with PD to help with self-management of symptoms and social isolation.23-25 

Previous studies investigating singing in persons with PD are limited and equivocal. Some results have demonstrated improvements in speech intelligibility and increased vocal intensity as well as singing quality and vocal range, while others found... (READ MORE)

 

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