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Topic Soft voice Go to previous topic Go to next topic Go to higher level

By hubb On 2010.04.06 09:57
At our last PD support meeting, we had a speech langauge pathologist speak to us.Most people with PD will eventually develop a voice that is too soft for most people to hear. This is called "hypokinetic dysarthria" which just means speech that is soft and slurred. A couple of hints that she passed on to us were
(1) Take the biggest breath you can and say "Ah" for as long and as loud as you can - timing yourself - repeat several times and keep track of how long each "ah" was.
(2) Find your highest pitch and hold for 2-3 seconds - repeat & do the same with your lowest pitch.
(3) Repeat simple sentences (open the door, please sit down, etc.) LOUDLY using the same effort you would use if you were shouting.
She said that any PD patient can benefit from just these simple exercises if they will practice them regularly. Worth a try anyway.

By lvmymom On 2010.04.16 19:07
Thank you! Yes! My mother lives with elderly people in an assisted living facility and no one can hear her speak. It is kind of crumby.... but that's the way it goes.

It is difficult for my mother to commuicate even with those of us with good hearing due to the soft slurred voice.

I will go over the exercises tonight with her.

Thank you for sharing!

By Lynnie On 2010.04.18 13:30
My husband developed PD over 2 years ago. He is almost 62 He had a deeper voice than he does now.
I can mention the exercises to him, but he probably won't do them. He did do some back exercises on his own for a few weeks, but I don't see him doing any now. He doesn't keep up the exercises on a regular basis.

Our support group has exercises in a town 30 minutes from our place, but he won't attend those either and they are free.

I can't push him, but really wish he would do something. I mentioned to him that his posture was starting to stoop, and he said "No kinding?" He broke his ankle about 15 years ago and it never healed properly, so now it causes a callous on the bottom of his foot. He has it removed every 2 months, so he blames the foot for stooping. I don't think it's the ankle, but the weakness in the muscles.
Why can't he realize certain exercises on a regular basis would help.
I doubt that he would go even I attended.

By hubb On 2010.04.18 14:04
Lynnie - I have same problems as you - I attend the PD support group and seldom will he go with me but I learn something new each time. He will do his exercises, including the voice, if I practically stand over him and make him. When you read that they are like little children, that's the truth, except it's much harder to manage an adult who weighs more than you do. Sometimes it gets so exasperating, you just want to throw your arms up in the air and scream, but that gets you no where, and so we try to cope as best we can. As the disease worsens, problems worsen as well. Medications don't last as long, it's more difficult for them to understand and comprehend what you tell them. And what is most frustrating for us as caretakers is that we knew them when they were sharp individuals and you still sorta' expect that out of them, and it just isn't there anymore and it's hard to make yourself realize that fact and you have to draw upon every ounce of patience you have in dealing with them. My husband has no strength or stamina anymore and that frustrates him as well. In an earlier post, someone wrote that her PD spouse was confused, she was confused and that PD is confusing and I say amen to all 3 of those. Some days you feel like you just muddle through them and that there's no end in sight, and then you realize what that end is, and you have to change your line of thought quickly. Sure isn't a bed of roses for patients or caretakers.

By lvmymom On 2010.04.19 15:37
Well ... I told my mom and today we spent the day doing chores so I asked "Oh, by the way, Mom, did you try those voice exercises I showed you the other day?"

You got it ... her reply was "no" .... and she said it very very softly.

LOL Gotta love em

By Emma On 2010.04.19 16:17
My husband had speech therapy at one time as well. He won't do the exercises either but I do remember that one trick she taught him was to push his hands/arms down as hard as he can on the arm of the chair when he's speaking. It helps force more air out thus amplifying the voice. Of course he doesn't do that either, but it did seem to work when he did it in his therapy sessions.

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