Belinda Hill & Associates Speech-Language Pathologists - TheraBee™ Programs

Services for Adults - Voice Disorders
Definition

A voice disorder refers to an abnormal voice quality, as a result of: neurological, physiological, psychological or organic change (e.g. vocal nodules). Professional voice users such as teachers and singers are high risk for voice disorders.

Issues
Common issues or signs that may occur include:
  • Hoarseness
  • Breathy voice
  • Aphonia (no voice)
  • Reduced vocal range
  • Pitch breaks, changes or very highly pitched voice
  • Tremor
  • Strain
  • Pain or other similar sensations
  • Changes in volume or vocal quality
  • Physiological changes during the production of voice,
    e.g. air flow, reduced muscle tension
  • Observable anatomical changes, e.g. muscle weakness or growths

Assessment

What to expect at an assessment:
A qualified speech pathologist will conduct assessments and investigate the following:
  • Case History, including: social, lifestyle, medical and family
  • Ability to manipulate vocal features- i.e. pitch, volume, resonance and respiration
  • Perceptual evaluation of vocal quality
  • Oral muscular structure
The speech pathologist will also address any appropriate referrals where further investigation is required.

Voice Therapy/ Management

There are three main approaches used in the management of voice disorders. These include: surgical, medical and behavioural. In order to ensure the correct approach or combination of approaches are chosen, the cause of the voice disorder must be established.

Speech Pathologists provide therapy based on a behavioural approach. Therapy techniques and options are selected based on the signs and symptoms present.
Therapy can target:
  • Addressing the cause of the disorder
    e.g. relaxation techniques
  • Addressing changes in anatomical structure
    e.g. reducing tension in the vocal folds
  • Educating clients on vocal hygiene
    e.g. lifestyle changes to help achieve a healthy voice
  • Making appropriate referrals to ensure a multidisciplinary approach is taken to therapy
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Phone: 02 4736 8151 | Fax: 02 4736 8171 | Email: info@therabee.com
 
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