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Understanding the Importance of Voice Therapy

Importance of Voice Therapy - JSS Hospital Blog

The presence of voice disorders or voice problems frequently causes changes in an individual’s voice. Often, there can be a change in voice quality, and the voice can become strained, hoarse, breathy, rough, weak, or even the voice may disappear altogether. During these instances, voice therapy becomes one of the essential treatment options.

Voice therapy is an established line of treatment for many vocal fold lesions, such as vocal nodules and other benign vocal fold lesions. A survey showed that 91% of American Academy of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery members use voice therapy as the primary treatment for patients with vocal fold nodules.

The Speech and Language Pathologist or the Voice Pathologist is the professional involved in assessing and managing voice disorders. Voice therapy aims to educate patients about the practices and behaviours that cause voice problems and address the patient-specific factors that worsen the injury to the voice box or vocal folds.

Voice therapy aims to eliminate the voice problem and improve voice production. There are various approaches to voice therapy and different approaches for different individuals based on factors such as the cause of voice disorders, type of voice disorders or primary symptoms of voice disorders. Voice therapy is also used to prevent people from voice disorders or to avoid voice problems, especially among professional voice users such as teachers or singers. Even though the duration of voice therapy depends upon the underlying voice problem, voice therapy sessions are commonly scheduled for one to three sessions a week for a few months, and each session lasts 30 to 45 minutes. Voice therapy frequently includes exercises to relax the tension in the vocal fold muscles and neck muscles, to reduce or eliminate the symptoms caused by voice disorders, to increase respiratory efficiency through breathing exercises, behaviours to maintain vocal hygiene and exercises to attain optimum quality, loudness and pitch.

Dr. Narasimhan. SV,
Associate Professor and HoD,
Department of Speech Language Pathology,
JSS Institute of Speech and Hearing,