Casualty of lockdown: vocal muscle and jaw strength decline

Last week I had my oral prophylaxis. It was a routine dental cleaning, but I hadn’t gone in over 18 months because of the lockdown. Two reasons I am writing about it:

  1. The first question the dentist asked me: do you drink a lot of coffee? Ha ha! Yeah my teeth were stained because of my daily coffee habit. I was immediately reminded that you cannot keep any secrets from your dentist! Now I am more conscious about gargling with water right after taking coffee!
  2. I had a difficult time keeping my mouth open. My jaw got tired easily (what is ngawit in English?). And I realized, I also have not sung in our choir in over a year and I have not done any vocal and mouth-jaw exercises to keep the area strong.

I am reminded as well that on 23 October 2020, I made a recording of my voice doing a scale to see how many octaves I can reach. I don’t record myself ever, but I remember at that time being alarmed about the loss of my voice that I had to make a documentation.

This is why any loss of activity contributes to our slow decline without us realizing. I am going to ask our choir conductor for some exercises I can do at home, and search the internet too.

Update: I found this webinar called Singing Voice Health During COVID-19 and Beyond on Youtube, and is a good starting point on awareness. Too bad I cannot find the second part of this webinar which has the tips!

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