Voice Science™ provides evidence based Voice Therapy for Puberphonia in Melbourne and online as well as from our Canberra clinic.
We are known for our voice changing and research based care for all voice users. Voice Science also offers detailed care to people experiencing puberphonia. Applying detailed clinical knowledge, our treatment methods will show methods for lowering vocal pitch and changing voice presentation.
What is Puberphonia?
Puberphonia is a voice condition in which a high vocal pitch sustains into adult life after puberty. More common in males, it can result in considerable distress and discomfort when listeners might misgender the speaker or comment about idiosyncratic vocal pitch. Typically, teenage boys experience a drastic pitch drop of roughly one octave during puberty. This is caused following changes in the size of the larynx (voice box) owing to hormonal changes. In some cases despite the apparently normal growth of the larynx in a male, vocal pitch change does not settle deep enough after puberty. As a result, some adult males will continue to speak at high pitch similar to their pre-puberty pitch.
I think I have Puberphonia, what should I do?
If you suspect you have puberphonia we recommend an initial assessment of voice with one of our clinicians.
At Voice Science we will assess your current voice production and quality. This involves recording your voice and analysing it acoustically to check the vocal pitch levels and averages. The analysis provides vital insight into the vibratory behaviour of your voice muscle. The assessment will also include investigation of voice quality, respiration, resonance, projection, vocal range and amplitude. Your voice clinician will also ask questions about medical, occupational, environmental and behavioural factors that may be having an impact on your voice.
Your voice clinician or general practitioner can then refer you to an Examination by an Ear, Nose and Throat Surgeon or an Endocrinologist for further investigation if required. In some cases, endocrinological assessment is required to eliminate hormonal factors affecting your vocal presentation.
What are some typical symptoms of Puberphonia?
The following symptoms are often characteristic of puberphonia
- Pitch breaks (sudden changes in the vocal pitch that occur unexpectedly when speaking)
- Rough, hoarse and or breathy vocal quality
- A reported concern about the stability or consistency of the male’s voice
- A feeling of lack of control over vocal pitch
- Consistently or intermittent speaking pitch
- Being misgendered by conversation partners, particularly on the telephone.
How is Puberphonia treated?
Current best practice recommends that puberphonia is treated via a conservative course of speech pathology therapy exercises. Generally a period of voice therapy is recommended before any surgery or medical measures are implemented.
Your voice clinician at Voice Science will prescribe voice therapy drills to optimise and alter your voice pitch to make the voice deeper. You will need to practice voice targets daily. Voice Science applies evidence based approaches to the treatment of puberphonia. Our goal is to enable your voice to produce appropriate deep pitch with optimal function consistently in daily life.
Other names for this condition include: mutational falsetto, adolescent falsetto, pubescent falsetto and incomplete mutation.
©Voice Science, 2018
Many speakers opt to consult with a Speech Pathologist to reduce their vocal pitch and create consistent voice if faced with puberphonia.