Learning for life: Voice care

Long Learning and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) are the processes
by which professionals, such as nurses, develop and improve their practice.

are many ways to address CPD: formally, through attending courses, study days
and workshops; or informally, through private study and reflection. Reading
articles in professional journals is a good way of keeping up-to-date with what
is going on in the field of practice, but reflecting and identifying what you have
learned is not always easy.

questions are designed to help you to identify what you have learned from
studying the article. They will also help you to clarify what you can apply to
practice, what you did not understand and what you need to explore further.

Epidemiology is the study of

The outer layers of the skin
b) The earth’s crust
c) Epic hazards
d) The distribution of disease

Which countries have reliable evidence of voice problems?

Sweden & Finland
b) Finland & US
c) US & Sweden
d) US & Turkey

Which new occupations offer risk factors for the voice?

Computer programmers
b) Paramedics
c) Telemarketers
d) Hygiene operatives

What environmental conditions affect the voice?

Humidity >40%
b) Humidity <40%
c) Temperature >26C
d) Temperature <26C

What are the behavioural hazards to the professional voice?

Task centred & interpersonal
b) One-to-one and task centred
c) One-to-one and interpersonal
d) One-to-one and behavioural

Communication by telephone limits feedback of

b) Body language
c) Culture
d) Mental ability

Hoarseness and loss of voice are symptoms of

Upper respiratory tract infection
b) Disease of the larynx
c) Oesophagal cancer
d) Occupational stress

Sustained exposure to abuse from customers can cause

Anger – leading to swearing
b) Amusement – leading to laughing
c) Emotional strain – leading to loss of voice
d) Boredom – leading to sleeping

Which of the following is NOT a high-risk occupation for the voice?

b) Singer
c) Teacher
d) Clergyman

Who had to modify their bark?

Dog handlers
b) Vets
c) Square bashers
d) Tree surgeons


– Refresh your knowledge of epidemiology and discuss with your colleagues
or clinical supervisor why epidemiology is useful in occupational health
practice. 2) c 3) c – It is interesting to note that so many occupations
where the voice is needed are not included in this list. Paramedics talk to
casualties and patients all day long, more so than counsellors whose job it is
to ‘listen’. 4) b – The comfort zone for humidity is between 40 and 60%.
If you have the opportunity to visit the tropical house at Kew Gardens, spend
some time in the arid zone and then the tropical zone and experience the
difference of extremes of humidity. 5) a 6) b – However, thinking of the
success of radio for almost a century, the lack of body language does not
always seem to hamper one’s understanding of complex messages. Discuss with
your colleagues any incidents you can remember where you have been mistaken by
not being able to see someone. List the things you can tell by voice alone. 7)
– Although all these answers could be correct. Make notes on all the
diseases you can think of that could cause hoarseness or loss of voice and
spend some time revising your knowledge. 8) c 9) a 10) c – However, as
an ex-military person, I appreciate the importance of being able to hear, and
give clear commands on a parade square. When hundreds of people are marching on
concrete in boots it takes a lot to make them stop.

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