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Oesophageal speech

This method of voicing was used before the voice prosthesis was developed. Oesophageal speech is the oldest method and can be one of the most difficult to learn. Only 1 in 3 people attempting this technique will be able to do it, and often their speech is limited to short sentences.

What is oesophageal speech?

 

This technique uses the body’s natural tissues as the new voice source and requires you to swallow small amounts of air into your oesophagus before expelling it into the pharyngo-oesophagal segment (throat), which will vibrate to produce sound.

 

How oesophageal speech work?

Air is trapped in the mouth and then swallowed using your tongue. The column of swallowed air is then pushed back into the upper oesophagus causes the food pipe to vibrate, generating the sound.

The sound is further modified by the tongue and lips to create words.

Advantages of using oesophageal speech:

  • Non-surgical method
  • Allows for hands-free speech

Challenges of using oesophageal speech:

  • Can be difficult to master
  • Bloating can happen due to air swallowing
  • Limited to short sentences

Speech using oesophageal

The video below will give you an idea of what it sounds like when you speak using the oesophageal method.