American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Voice and Communication Therapy for Clients Who Are Transgender/Transsexual

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What does the speech-language pathologist do when working with clients who are transgender/transsexual?

Individuals who are transgender/transsexual may elect to have voice and communication therapy to help them use their voice in a safe way. The speech-language pathologist (SLP) provides voice and communication training. The SLP will look at a variety of aspects of communication, including vocal pitch, intonation and resonance, and nonverbal communication.

Assessment will involve the collection of a case history and medical history, and assessment of voice and language. It is important for the SLP to eliminate any vocal abusive behaviors resulting from changes in pitch and intensity, which can lead to vocal nodules or other voice problems.

The following are some of the things that may be targeted:

  • pitch
  • resonance
  • intonation (the rhythm of speech)
  • rate (how fast or slow the person speaks)
  • volume/intensity
  • language
  • speech sound production (articulation)
  • pragmatics (social rules of communication)

What organizations have more information?

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