Friday, 1 July 2011

Sinuses....Useless?


Inflamed sinuses, sinus infections, sinus headaches…
These are our most common associations with sinuses.  They are all negative and involve some pretty nasty pain.
The sinus is simply a space filled with air.
Why do we even have these things?
Do they have a purpose, or are they “as useless as windshield wipers on a submarine?”
The truth is that nobody has been able to figure out for sure what they are for.
Some people claim that the sinus cavities act as ‘insulation’ for the eyes…could that be all their only purpose?
The human skull has 4 major pairs of sinus cavities.  
1.    Frontal sinuses (behind forhead)
2.    Maxillary sinuses (behind cheekbones)
3.    Ethmoid sinuses (between eyes)
4.    Sphenoid sinuses (behind eyes)
Despite the mystery behind their purpose, some advanced vocalists/singers claim they can use these small air-pockets to their advantage.
In this case, the sinus cavities (and other spaces in neck and head region) would do for their voices, what the hollow part of an acoustic guitar does for the chords that are struck – adding resonance to the sound.
Without that hollowness in the guitar, sound waves would have no place to ‘bounce around’ and ‘amplify’ what is produced.  
Some of the world’s talented vocalists attempt to utilize the body’s natural ‘resonators’ (cavities/spaces) when they are singing to produce the fullest sound possible.
But other than that, the function of the sinus is still a bit mysterious.

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