Examining the Impact of Psychological Vulnerability on the Experiences of Females with Voice Problems




O'Brien, Annie

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Vocal problems, particularly functional voice problems, disproportionately affect females more than males. The common etiology might be anatomical and physiologic differences or more connected to psychological tendencies. Our study sought to illuminate the relationship between vulnerability and resilience, two psychological tendencies, and vocal problems in women. A survey was developed that included the Psychological Vulnerability Scale (Sinclair & Wallston, 1999), Brief Resilience Scale (Smith et al., 2008), and the Voice Handicap Index (Jacobson et al., 1997). One hundred and three completed responses were collected. The results of our study confirmed if a person has a self-perceived voice problem, then they are more likely to score high on a measure of psychological vulnerability. No differences in resilience were found between those with a self-perceived voice problem and those without. It is my intent that clinicians and field professionals in Communication Sciences and Disorders can use these results to provide themselves with a deeper level of understanding of the etiologies behind vocal health issues in women.



Vulnerability., Vocal Health in Women., Resilience., Psychological Vulnerability., Voice Disorders., Women.