HEALTH WATCH: What Makes Your Voice Unique

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - The human voice is a way to communicate that is unique to every person.

Everyone’s voice is unique, but what makes your voice sound the way it does?

"This is what the voice box looks like," said David Lott, M.D., Otolaryngology Specialist with the Mayo Clinic.

Dr. David Lott says your diaphragm and lungs push air up to the vocal cords, which vibrate.

"Once it hits there, there are waves in the air, and those waves are going to vibrate in your pharynx, the upper part of your throat, the back part of your nose, and in the sinuses in your head," said Lott.

It’s similar to what happens when you play a guitar.

"The guitar strings are what your vocal folds are. They just vibrate and make a buzz sound," Lott said.

The vibrations resonate in the body of the guitar — just like they do in your head. How the tones sound depends on the shape and sound of the instrument.

"And because everybody's throat, nose and head are different, we all have our own signature sounds," said Lott.