Frequently Asked Questions

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Speech Pathology

What is a voice disorder?
A Voice Disorder occurs when someone changes the way they use their voice, and it is no longer efficient and easy to produce.  People underestimate the role of the voice in one’s own identity, and as a person’s voice changes, as does their identity, causing many emotional changes to also take place.  

A Voice Disorder develops usually as a combination of problems. A common source is an internal change such as development of a cold or laryngitis which may cause a change in the way someone uses their voice.  That person may continue to use their voice as much as they did previous to this problem, but because they have a sore or dry throat they start to compensate for the pain of their sore throat by using their voice differently.  This cold may have been produced by another source which may be external such as air-conditioning.  Other external sources which may directly influences the voice are; alcohol, dust, medication, things which affect the mucosa or lining of the vocal folds. A third source of disorganisation is an emotional source.  Voices have people behind them with a number of personalities and stresses that can drastically affect one’s voice.  Your voice is your carrier of your emotion.  Thus emotions affect your voice.

Some people just feel their voice does not represent them well, and they don’t know what to do to change the way they sound.  Gabrielle is experienced in aiding the production of a person’s natural voice’, one which reflects their inner being.


What is Dyspraxia ?
Dyspraxia is a neurologically based developmental disability which is present from birth.  Dyspraxia is a motor planning disorder, not a muscular deficit.


What is Speech / Articulation?
This is the process of using the articulators to produce speech sounds.  The articulators include the lips, teeth, tongue, hard palate and soft palate.  The pharynx and larynx also play a role in speech production, as does the jaw.  The nasal cavity and nose also are indicated in effecting speech.


What is Stuttering ?
“Stuttering is a disorder in which speech is interrupted by repeated movements and fixed postures of the speech mechanism. These interruptions may be accompanied by signs of struggle and tension. The speech disruptions of stuttering range from mild to severe and stuttering may also be quite variable within individuals. For example, in preschool-age children, stuttering may come and go over days or months. In older children and adults, stuttering may vary according to the communicative context.” (http://www.fhs.usyd.edu.au/asrc/what_is/index.shtml)  

The Australian Stuttering Research Centre website (University of Sydney) provides an extensive amount of information about stuttering.



Gabrielle Coffey - Speech Pathologist