Voice therapy is like physical therapy for your larynx and throat. After evaluating your condition, your therapist will assemble a therapy exercise routine that will help you best meet your goals. In between sessions, you will perform the exercises at home. Your therapist will then make adjustments as necessary.
Effective treatment in voice therapy is dependent upon your practicing your exercises as instructed. The way the exercises work to improve your voice is to change the way your muscles are working to make voice. Because there is so much “muscle memory” involved in making voice, practice ensures that the body is able to create a new muscle memory that you can use in your daily life – without having to think about it constantly.
Pitch is an often-misunderstood topic in voice therapy. A common misconception is that those with voice problems should learn to talk in a higher pitch. While it is true that your best “resonant voice” (the most efficient voice production) may be somewhat higher than the voice you currently use to speak, the change in pitch must come from increased efficiency, letting go of extra muscle effort and healing of the tissue. Simply forcing the voice to a higher pitch in a way that is disconnected from those other factors will contribute to a lack of success.
Voice and Personality
Because we identify our personalities so strongly with our voices, patients in voice therapy may be concerned that making changes to the voice will require them to change who they are as a person. The goal of good voice therapy is to find the voice that is most efficient for you and allows you to be yourself. There will be changes in the tone and quality of your voice, but rather than representing a vast change, they manifest as better stability, stamina and ease of voicing.
Source: Barbara M. Wilson Arboleda, M.S., CCC-SLP
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