Most studies investigating the effect of sex hormones on the larynx and vocal folds focused on the voice quality of women either around menopause or during the menstrual cycle. To our knowledge, however, there have been no studies that investigated the effect of oral contraceptives on the female voice. In the present study five women who ingest oral contraceptives (pill group) and five women who do not (natural group) were recorded producing the vowels/i/ and /a/ repeatedly over a period of 40 days. Acoustic analyses were performed on these recordings including F0, amplitude, jitter, shimmer, and harmonic-to-noise ratio (HNR). Results indicated that jitter and shimmer values of the pill group were significantly lower than those of the natural group. No group differences were found for F0, amplitude, or HNR. In addition, the pill group demonstrated significantly smaller variance for all variables tested. The results suggest that oral contraceptives might increase voice stability associated with smaller hormonal changes. Thus the present study provides preliminary evidence of the effect of oral contraceptives on the female voice.
- Oral contraceptives