Special Sub-Topic: The Larynx - Nature's Boom Box
|Vocalization is not the only responsibility of the larynx. In which of these functions does the larynx also play a role?|
Swallowing. The larynx closes off the trachea, "wind pipe," to help keep anything from entering into the lungs.
|What is contained within the larynx that enables human beings to vocalize?|
Vocal cords/folds. The vocal cords, or folds, vibrate as air passes over them causing an audible vocalization. The tension of the cords is what gives us our pitch; taut produces a high pitch, while less elastic gives a lower one.
|The larynx is made up of three cartilaginous structures, the epiglottis, the cricoid and the what?|
Thyroid. The thyroid cartilage gives us the main body of the laryngeal structure. It is what is thought of as the Adam's apple.
|The cricoid cartilage is what shape?|
Circular. The cricoid cartilage is the circular, ring-like cartilage that is attached to the top of the airway. It helps to keep the airway open, among other duties.
|Within the thyroid cartilage lie the vocal cords. They attach to which of the following cartilage?|
Arytenoid Cartilage. The arytenoid cartilages lie atop the cricoid cartilage. They are pivoted to bring the vocal cords together for speech and then apart for breathing.
|The epiglottis bends down and rests on these horn-like cartilages to protect the airway during swallowing.|
Corniculate cartilages. The corniculate cartilages sit on top of the arytenoid cartilages.
|The thyroid cartilage is attached by the thyroid membrane to what bone located in the upper neck?|
Hyoid bone. The hyoid bone is often referred to as one of the bones of the skull. It is attached to the styloid processes of the skull with ligaments and muscles. The hyoid bone is the only bone in the body not directly connected to another bone.
|The musculature structures that make up the larynx include the vocal muscle, the lateral and posterior cricoarytenoid muscles, as well as the oblique and vertical of this muscle.|
Cricothyroid. The vocal muscles help to adjust tension of the vocal cords The cricoarytenoid muscles help to pivot the arytenoid cartilages to bring the vocal cords together for voicing and apart for breathing. The cricothyroid muscles, along with the vocal muscles help to regulate vocal cord tension.
|The vocal cords are actually this type of structure.|
Ligaments. The vocal cords are ligaments that are connected within the larynx by the thyroid and the arytenoid cartilages. They are brought together and vibrate as air passes over them which produces vocalizations. The tighter they are held, the higher the pitch, while the more relaxed, the lower the pitch.
|The trachea is the the upper portion of the airway. It is separated by the larynx from what?|
Pharynx. The trachea is made up of ribbed cartilage. It rests against the esophagus. When the airway becomes blocked, a tracheotomy can be performed (an incision made into the trachea) to allow air into the airway.
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