HOW TO

Heal Your Voice After Being Unwell

18 February 2019

Getting sick isn’t just an annoyance for singers. It affects how good we sound. Our bodies are our instruments so as well as feeling lack-lustre on stage and not having the energy to perform at your best, you also have to deal with vocal raspiness and lack of power. 

Even worse is trying to heal your voice after being sick and getting it back on track without causing damage. We all know that if you stop singing for more than a week your voice suffers and becomes ‘out of shape’, so how do you get back to maximum power and control as quickly as possible? 

Today I’m going to share my routine for getting my voice healthy and ready for singing again after being unwell for around three weeks.

Hope you find it helpful.

Nicola xx

 

STEP ONE: Do a nasal rinse

Hands down the best thing you can do is a nasal rinse. No, its not at all glamorous but it sure does work.

It makes sense too. Your sinuses and nasal cavities are blocked so use a nasal rinse to flush them out and keep everything clear, giving your immune system a fighting change to kick back at the bugs.  Best of all, its all natural and once you buy the kit, basically free.

Just make sure you only use water you have pre-boiled in the kettle to destroy any microbacteria that may be in the water and prep the rinse with a special sachet so it doesn’t hurt to squirt water up your nose.

STEP TWO: Steam with Eucalyptus Oil

I bet your Grandmother used to tell you about this old time remedy. Well, she was right! It still works a treat.

Simply fill a pot with boiling water from the kettle, place a towel over your head and lean over the steam breathing in through your nose and mouth.

Super charge it by adding three drops of Eucalyptus Oil to the water. Don’t add too much though otherwise the vapour will sting your eyes and make sure you don’t put your face too close to the steam otherwise you’ll burn yourself.

Then breathe in the goodness.

STEP THREE: Up your fluids intake

Whether you’re someone who drinks enough water daily or not, its a good idea to increase your fluid intake when you’re trying to get your voice back in shape for singing.

Taking a big gulp of water can do wonders for your voice regardless of if you’re sick but its even more important, especially if you’re starting to vocalise and get back into your practice and you can still feel a bit of a sore throat going on.

Many professional singers are known to drink (a shit load) of water inbetween each take during a recording sesh so make sure you’re getting more that your 8 glasses a day.

I also like drinking Green Tea (Matcha) or while I’m singing I go for Peppermint or Licorice Root Tea which soothes a sore throat. If I have to do a gig and I have a sore throat, I take a flask of Licorice Root Tea with me and sip it inbetween songs.

 

STEP FOUR: Use natural supplements

I love using good old regular Vitamin C to help boost my immune system. You can also increase your vitamin C intake by eating oranges and other citrus fruits.

For helping boost my immunity when I feel I either have a cold coming on, or am in the middle of a cold I reach for Olive Leaf Extract.

You can’t take this continuously because after a while your body gets used to it and it loses its effectiveness, but if taken only when needed for a couple of weeks Olive Leaf Extract really helps reduce the severity of colds.

Also, if you’re not allergic to bees try Propolis. Gargle with it to reduce a sore throat and you can drink it afterwards. It smells absolutely foul but it works wonders.

 

STEP FIVE: Stretch and softly vocalise

Once you feel your cold lifting and you’re ready to start singing again, remember to prep your body for singing first and do some stretches.

If you’ve been in bed for longer than usual your muscle will most likely have become tight so stretch out your rib cage and muscles surrounding your diaphragm.

Then begin to softly hum. Don’t increase your volume too much at this stage, just lightly hum along to your favourite songs, sipping herbal tea or water to keep your throat hydrated.

Stop if you feel pain and give yourself time to rest, but if you feel ok keep on singing until you feel your voice fatiguing. Don’t push yourself too hard at this stage and give yourself a good few practice sessions to allow your voice to get back to its former glory. 

Did you find this post helpful?

Do you have a routine that helps you get over a cold or illness and get your voice back on track? 

Let me know if I’ve missed anything or you have a super herbal remedy we should all know about in the comments below.

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