How to get rid of a Nasal Singing Voice

Posted on 14 Oct 2009


I love to sing, and I really love writing songs.  But I have never liked my singing voice. The nasal quality of it annoys me.

In the control on the left, under XenoMusic, you can hear me singing some of my original songs.

A few sound okay with the tweaking I do in my home studio to enhance the frequencies, but “Get off my head” is an example of me without the tweaking: annoyingly nasal!!!!

Some of this may be fixable with voice lessons, but I’m wondering what else can be done. I was told recently by my doctor that I have a deviated septum. My father had this too and had it surgically corrected.


A nasal voice is a type of speaking voice characterized by speech with a “nasal” quality to it. It can also occur naturally because of genetic variation. Causes of hypo-nasal speech include anything that causes nasal obstruction including, but not limited to:

Nasal septum deviation is a common physical disorder of the nose, involving a displacement of the nasal septum.Presentation

The nasal septum is the bone and cartilage in the nose that separates the nasal cavity into the two nostrils. … A deviated septum is an abnormal condition in which the top of the cartilaginous ridge leans to the left or the right, causing obstruction of the affected nasal passage. The condition can result in poor drainage of the sinuses. Patients can also complain of difficulty breathing easily, headaches, bloody noses, or of sleeping disorders such as snoring or sleep apnea.

It is common for nasal septa to depart from the exact centerline; the septum is only considered deviated if the shift is substantial or is adversely affecting the patient. Many people with a deviation are unaware they have it until some pain is produced. But by itself a deviated septum can go undetected for years and thus be without any need for correction.

If the deviation merely entails a mild deflection from the midline in one direction or the other, it should not be considered a medical issue. Some people are concerned about diminished airflow through the effectively smaller nostril resulting from deviation; however, what ever airflow-diminishment occurs in one nostril is recaptured by augmentation of airflow in the other (now larger) nostril.


In most cases a deviated septum can be corrected with a minor surgical procedure known as a septoplasty, in which the surgeon enters through the nostrils and cuts away the obtruding matter. The surgery is performed quickly but the patient may take one to three weeks to fully recover.  …

Some tips from

Nasal voices are caused by the improper flow of air whenever you speak. You may not know it, but the nose is a very important organ in speech. Aside from the movement of your mouth parts and the vibration of your vocal cords, airflow is very important in producing speech sounds.

There are two kinds of nasal speech:

  • Hypo-nasal speech is a nasal voice caused by an obstructed airflow. Something as simple as a clogged nose, allergies, sinusitis, or the common cold can cause hypo-nasal speech. In most cases of hypo-nasal speech, the words come across as rather hollow in depth.
  • Hyper-nasal speech is a nasal voice characterized by distorted speech-sounds, and an inability to pronounce certain parts of speech like consonants. Hyper-nasal speech is caused by physical deformities like cleft lip or cleft palate. Sometimes the velopharyngeal (VP) mechanism, which is a membrane that separates the nasal and oral cavity during speech, does not work normally.

See a Doctor

If your nasal voice is bothersome and you have had it for years, chances are that you are suffering from a medical condition or a physical deformity that causes it. When you have had a nasal voice for a long time and you are bothered by it, you may need to consult a doctor.

Deformities like cleft palate, cleft lip, or VP inadequacy need minor surgery. Most babies who have deformities in their mouth get quick surgery to correct the problem, but some causes of a nasal voice need to be evaluated, diagnosed, and cured by a doctor. A doctor who specializes in eye-ear-nose-throat (EENT) medical procedures may remove inflamed adenoids, tonsils, or correct VP inadequacy and other deformities and diseases.

Breathe Properly

You may be surprised how the quality of your voice improves if you breathe properly. If you take in too little air when you speak, you’ll end up with a very exhausted, hushed tone that comes across as a very nasal voice. If you inhale and hold in too much air whenever you speak, your nasal passages expand and more sound resonates through the space, giving you a nasal voice.

Correct Your Posture

Proper posture is perhaps the most important thing about good speech, and can get rid of a nasal voice in a snap. If you stoop or slouch, you’re forcing your speech organs in such a way that you don’t have a clear air passage. Improper posture will force you to speak through your nose.  …

Would I go under the knife to improve my voice? Probably… if it would really help. Has anyone out there with a nasal singing voice had it fixed with an inner nose operation?

Posted in: Music