1.3 Generator subsystem of phonation

1.3.1 Pharynx and larynx

Illustration 5. The pharyngeal cavity. Illustration 6. The laryngeal cavity.

Larynx is the organ closely linked to the respiratory function, a place where the sound originates. It has the shape of a downward truncated inverted triangular pyramid, the upper base of which reaches the tongue and the lower part of it rests on the trachea, ie "sits" on it still. Dimensions of the larynx vary depending on age, sex, and differ from one individual to another.

The larynx is composed of cartilage skeleton, ligaments, providing the appropriate articulation of the cartilages between themselves, muscles, mucous membranes, blood vessels and nerves. Thus, the human larynx is a complex entity. It is located on the path of airflow and is part of the respiratory tract.

Adults have the larynx at the level of IV-VII cervical vertebrae in their neck. Its entrance opens into the laryngeal part of the pharynx, and at the level of the VII cervical vertebra, it passes into the windpipe.

Men's larynx is usually one vertebra lower than that of women. The larynx of preschool children is a one-two vertebra higher than that of women. If babies usually have their epiglottis at the level of the velum, by 7-8 years the child larynx gradually descends to the level of the VII cervical vertebra like that of adults.

Illustration 5. The pharyngeal cavity

  1. vestibule of mouth;
  2. nasal part of the pharynx (nasopharynx);
  3. the oral cavity;
  4. tonsil;
  5. genioglossal muscle;
  6. oral part of the pharynx;
  7. mentothyoid muscle;
  8. laryngo-pharynx;
  9. larynx;
  10. oesophagus;
  11. trachea.

Illustration 6. The laryngeal cavity

  1. uvula;
  2. tongue root;
  3. genioglossal muscle;
  4. epiglottis;
  5. mentothyoid muscle;
  6. hyoepiglottic ligament;
  7. ary-epiglottic ligament;
  8. vestibular fold;
  9. ventricle of the larynx;
  10. vocal fold;
  11. thyroid cartilage;
  12. cricothyroid ligament;
  13. cricoid cartilage;
  14. trachea;
  15. arched tracheal cartilages;
  16. oesophagus.