Vocal cords or folds are located in the throat of humans. Specifically they are in the larynx near the trachea. Vocal cords are actually folds of mucus membranes or tissue that stretch and vibrate to help produce sounds. These vocal folds are primarily muscle tissue. Vocal cords are within the thyroid cartilage. The thyroid cartilage is what is commonly called the “Adam’s Apple”. Touching the outside of the throat a person can feel the thyroid cartilage or “Adam’s Apple”.
The “Adam’s Apple” tends to be quite smaller in women and children. An adult males "Adam's Apple" is usually large enough to be seen by looking at the outside of the throat. The larynx includes the vocal cords, muscles, and cartilage. Air passing from the lungs causes the folds of mucus membranes to vibrate which enables speech. The larynx is designed to protect the lungs. The vocal folds or chords will close when a person is eating and swallowing to prevent food from entering the esophagus and progressing toward the lungs.
Beginning at the top of the throat is the larynx this is located at the upper part of the air passage. The larynx is composed of nine cartilages though three are pairs and three are singles. Covering these cartilages are ligaments which hold them together. Muscles are located inside and outside of the larynx. Mucus Membranes or tissue that begins in the mouth continue through the larynx and into the lungs. Numerous glands are within the larynx and secrete mucus to coat the throat and vocal folds. Blood vessels are located throughout the larynx, throat and vocal folds. Nerves are also present throughout the throat, larynx and vocal folds.
Anatomy of the Cartilage of the Larynx
1. Hyoid Bone
2. Thyroid Cartilage
3. Cricord Cartilage
Anatomy of the Vocal Folds
2. Large muscles
3. Small muscles
List of Intrinsic Muscles of the Larynx
1. Posterior Cricoarytenoid
The Vocal Cords or Folds are a complex part of the human body. When babies are born they are unable to speak but can make noise by pushing air from the lungs through the air passage and past the vocal folds to make a crying sound. As a child grows they learn to use their tongue, teeth, palate and lips to form sounds and words. Further they learn how to control air and push it from the lungs and past the vocal folds to create sounds know as speech. This takes many years of practice and learning how to properly use the vocal cords or folds to communicate. The anatomy of the vocal cords is often taken for granted but they are what make humans unique.