Voice therapy and speech therapy are commonly confused. While therapists who offer either type of therapy often call themselves “speech-language therapists” or “speech therapists” the two disciplines are different. Depending on the specific language disorder, a patient will be advised to see a speech pathologist with an interest in voice.
The Difference Between Voice Therapy and Speech Therapy
The terms speech and voice are often used interchangeably. However, they are two separate things. Speech is essentially the sound that a person produces by modifying their lips, tongue, teeth and throat. Therefore, speech therapy would be beneficial for a specific language disorder that is a result of anatomical problems. For instance, a cleft lip or a cleft palate can cause a speech disorder.
Your voice is the sound that emanates from your voicebox (i.e. larynx). Therefore, the voice is basically produced before it turns into speech. Voice therapy is used for disorders that involve functional or anatomical problems that stem from the voicebox. Medical problems such as vocal fold polyps, paralyzed vocal folds, vocal fold nodules and other related abnormalities can be treated with voice therapy. For instance, a person with polyps or cysts on their vocal cord may have a raspy or breathy sounding voice.
Although this is a simplistic take on voice and speech therapy, it will give you a basic understanding of the difference between the two disciplines. There can also be psychological components that cause speech or voice disorders. In order to receive proper treatment, it is imperative to schedule a consultation with a specialist in Sydney who can perform a series of diagnostic tests. These tests will get to the root of the specific language disorder so that a tailored treatment plan can be followed.
If you are interested in voice therapy, contact your local doctor who will arrange for you to see one of our speech pathologists. We have expertise in voice therapy and will provide you with a straightforward, efficient and very effective treatment plan targeted to your concerns.