WTF Fun Fact 13742 – Humming While Holding Your Nose

Ever tried humming while holding your nose? Spoiler alert: it doesn’t work, and here’s why.

The Mechanics of Humming While Holding Your Nose

Humming involves sound produced by vocal fold vibrations in your throat. Normally, when you hum, the sound exits through your nose. Yes, your nose is more than just a place to hang glasses or catch a cold; it’s a vital part of your vocal instrument.

When you hum, your mouth stays closed, so the only exit route for the air is through your nasal passages. This airflow through the nose helps to amplify and modify the sound, creating that familiar humming tone.

What Happens When Try Humming While Holding Your Nose

So, what goes down when you clamp shut your nostrils? Simply put, you block the only air escape route. When your nose is pinched shut, the air that vibrates in your vocal cords can’t escape your body easily. This disruption stops the sound from developing into a hum.

Trying to hum with your nose closed might make you feel a bit silly as you realize no sound comes out. Instead, you might just hear a muffled, nasal sound or nothing at all. It turns out that your body can’t outsmart the basics of sound physics, no matter how hard you try.

A Dive into the Science of Sound

Humming is a demonstration of sound waves being carried through air. When these waves have a clear path to travel, you hear the hum loud and clear. Block that path, and the sound waves get stifled. This is basic physics in action, showing how sound transmission needs a medium (like air) to travel effectively.

When you hold your nose and attempt to hum, you’re essentially trapping the sound waves in your head. Since they can’t escape or be properly projected, the humming just doesn’t happen.

Fun Experiments and Party Tricks

Next time you’re at a party and run out of small talk, why not pull out the “try to hum with your nose pinched” challenge? It’s a fun, quirky trick that can break the ice and spark a conversation about the weird and wonderful ways our bodies work.

Humming with your nose pinched is one of those things that sounds like it might be possible until you actually try it. It’s a neat demonstration of how interconnected our bodily functions are—even something as simple as humming involves multiple parts of our respiratory and vocal systems.

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Source: “WHY IT’S IMPOSSIBLE TO HUM WHEN HOLDING YOUR NOSE” — Grunge


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