THE BEST 10 TIPS FOR A HEALTHY VOICE

How do you keep your voice healthy? This is one of the most common questions we receive daily. As singers we must take care of our instrument and prevention is always the best cure. Just like athletes take care of their bodies and train them in order to stay fit, singers must do the same not only to keep a beautiful sounding voice but more importantly to avoid all those vocal diseases that can put our voice at risk.

A very detailed report produced by the NIDCD ( National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders ) states that over 7 Million people in the United States have problems using their voices. Spasmodic Dysphonia, Laryngeal Papillomatosis, and Vocal Nodules are just a few of the vocal diseases singers may have.

In this post, you will learn ten ways to save your voice and avoid mistakes.

1) Drink a lot of water and keep your voice hydrated.

It sounds obvious but it is not. A lot of people do not drink enough water during the day and this is a very risky behavior that affects our whole body. Of course, water does not flow through the vocal cords directly but through the mucus that works as a lubricant and protects the inner part of our larynx. Keeping ourselves hydrate makes the mucus more fluid and less sticky, this helps to keep the vocal cords functional and healthy. Try also to drink less caffeine as it may contribute to excessive dryness of the throat, and try to eat foods that contain naturally a lot of water, such as fruit. A healthy diet means a healthy voice.

2) Rest your voice.

We all use our voice for many hours during the day, not only while we sing but also when we talk. If you do a job that requires you to speak for long hours, allow yourself to have some vocal breaks, of 20 to 30 minutes of silence. Teachers and people that work at the phone a lot often suffer from voice fatigue and this could lead to more serious vocal problems. Singers that use to have very long rehearsals or don’t rest their voice after a performance have often problems too.  It is important we take a vocal break whenever we have the chance.

3) Warm up your voice.

How many of you do proper warm-up exercises before rehearsing or performing? It is well known that lots of vocal damages or bad performances are the consequence of very bad singing habits. And skipping the warm-up exercises is right on the top of the list. Imagine if an acrobat would start performing a very complicated routine without warming up, flexing and stretching. The risk is very big and the same can be said for singers. Remember that just like athletes take care of their bodies, we must do the same. Never forget to do your warm-ups and save your voice. Check our warm up and training exercises audio library and create your playlist today.

4) Avoid smoke and alcohol.

Smoking is at the top of the list of what we must avoid if we want to improve not only our voice but also the overall quality of our lives. It is universally known that smoke ( secondhand smoke as well ) irritates the throat, causing damages to the vocal cords and the whole respiratory system. Smoking increases drastically the risk of throat cancer and many other diseases. If you smoke, consider quitting.

Drinking alcohol heavily could lead to similar problems because it causes a chemical irritation of the larynx and also the constriction of the throat, affecting your voice. Alcohol, like caffeine, causes dehydration that leads to vocal cords irritations that often causes a drastic change in the voice such as the diminished ability of the vocal folds to vibrate.

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5) Use a good singing technique and keep your voice relaxed.

We will never say this enough. It is important to learn how to use our voice properly and to sing without straining. Bad technique can lead to serious damages such has nodules and muscular pain that could affect your voice forever. Do not take the risk and keep your voice safe studying how to sing with a good technique. Keeping your voice relaxed is the key. Do not raise your head on a high note for example, and do not involve muscles that should be relaxed while you try to hit those notes. Also, remember to find a good vocal coach that can help you discover your voice in a healthy and safe way. Be aware of your vocal range and skills and try not to copy famous singers that may have a completely different voice from yours. Try also not to sing for too long if you are not used to it, pace yourself.

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6) Speak correctly.

Try to avoid yelling, screaming or talking loudly in noisy areas. If your voice starts getting tired, hoarse or dry, this is a signal that your vocal cords are irritated and you need to take a rest or, if you can’t, try to talk with a lower volume and lower vocal pressure.

7) Try not to use your voice when you are sick.

If your voice is hoarse or you have an infection to your throat try to spare your voice and let it rest. This will save you more problems and probably a very bad performance. Listen to what your voice is telling you and respect it. Take a break from singing and talking and let your voice heal. If you really must sing, a good knowledge of your voice and good singing technique can help, just remember not to over-sing and make those adjustments that will help you to get through your performance. Use humidifiers, vaporizers and steam inhalers, they help offering temporary relief from cough and congestions due to colds and allergies. 

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8) Cool-down after singing.

Just like warm-ups, cool-downs are fundamental to keep our voice healthy. After a performance or long singing session, we must do those exercises that hallow our voice to relax. Cool-down exercises such as very relaxed and soft glades that go up and down your vocal range help the vocal folds to contract and stretch. Physical stretching is also a good way of releasing the tension ( both physical and mental ) we may have accumulated during the performance.

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9) Use ambient humidifiers.

Humidifiers are great tools that help to keep our voice hydrate and help prevent dryness and help heal congestions and vocal problems such as coughs and cold symptoms much faster.

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10) Practice constantly and get checked.

It is important to get checked by a voice specialist from time to time that can help you identify possible problems of the voice and can solve them before they become major injuries. It is also important for a healthy voice to be always in good shape. This can be achieved by attending singing lessons and also with a good daily singing routine.  Check out our free e-book and audio course, it will help you create a perfect daily vocal routine and will keep your voice in perfect shape.

These are, in our opinion, the ten best ways to keep your voice healthy!

Hopefully, these ten points will be helpful to solve some vocal problems or will give you some more tips to keep your voice in great shape. Tell us, what do you usually do to keep your singing at the top? What are your secrets to keep your voice healthy? 

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