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Voice and Speech Disorders

What’s the difference between a voice disorder and a speech disorder? Speech is the sound produced by the lips, tongue, palate and throat, while voice refers to sounds produced in the voice box.

Many people seen at Ogden Clinic have speech and voice complications. Sometimes they are attributed to disfigurement of the lip or palate. However, disorders can also stem from excessive talking, shouting, coughing, and singing. People who use their voice professionally are treated frequently in our office.

Just like physical therapy, speech pathologists use speech therapy to strengthen and restore function to the voice box and speech pathways. Vocal cord injections and minimally invasive surgery are other options for severe cases.

How do I know if I have a voice condition?

Your voice is incredibly valuable; it is the way we connect and communicate with others. When your voice isn’t working optimally, the connection can break down. You may experience symptoms such as:

  • Voice fatigue
  • Voice strain, pain, or discomfort
  • Decreased singing or speaking ability
  • Decreased pitch range
  • Recurring hoarseness
  • Chronic throat clearing/coughing
  • Voice loss or instability

What kind of treatment is available for voice and speech disorders?

There are many treatment options available and yours will depend on the type and severity of your condition. Our speech pathologist and ENT experts work collaboratively to treat each patient’s unique needs.

For some, conservative treatment such as voice therapy and medication can improve their condition drastically. When needed, our ENT specialists are trained to remove lesions such as polyps, cysts, and nodules in the throat with minimally-invasive methods. Botox injections have also been shown to treat muscle spasms (spasmodic dysphonia) and other abnormal throat movements.

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