What is Dysphonia?

Dysphonia refers to a disorder of the voice. Voice problems (dysphonia) can include having a hoarse, croaky, or strained voice quality, difficulty speaking loudly, loss of voice, or vocal tremors. It can be diagnosed and managed with Speech Pathology therapy in conjunction with an Ear, Nose and Throat doctor.

Improving voice and cough with expert treatment in Sydney
Effective voice and chronic cough therapy in Sydney

What are some signs or symptoms of dysphonia?

  • Hoarse voice
  • Breathy voice
  • Strained/strangled voice
  • Reduced pitch range
  • Reduced loudness
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What causes dysphonia?

The cause of dysphonia is generally multifactorial. They include:

  • Vocal cord nodules/cysts
  • Voice misuse
  • Vocal cord palsy (from surgery or other medical conditions such as cancer)
  • Psychological – voice changes are not uncommon when people are under stress. The voice may be lost suddenly, usually overnight or following a cold.

Chronic cough and Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD)/Paradoxical Vocal Fold Movement (PVFM)

Chronic cough is a cough that lasts for more than 8 weeks and does not respond to medical treatment. Triggers can include strong smells, dust/allergens, reflux, postnasal drip, and cold air. VCD/PVFM is a condition where the vocal cords close or narrow in when breathing instead of opening, causing difficulty for a person to breathe in. These breathing difficulties can sound noisy and make a person feel as though they are not getting enough air in. Triggers can include strong smells, reflux, stress, and intense exercise.

Voice chronic cough treatment in Sydney

How can our speech therapy clinic help?

Our voice therapy services includes: clinical examination of voice, counselling on healthy voice usage and voice therapy exercises to improve vocal function. We work closely with the ENT doctor to ensure optimal management of the voice disorder. We will work with respiratory specialists and ENT doctors to assess and manage chronic cough and VCD/PVFM. Speech pathology management at Speech and Feeding includes breathing retraining, providing strategies to regain control of cough, and reduce sensitivity in the throat.

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