Do you often sing – whether privately or professionally? Do you have to talk a lot at work? Classic speakers are teachers, educators and actors. But newer jobs also require the voice – for example with content creators and influencers in social networks. So it’s important to know what can be done for your voice – stay healthy with the following 10 tips!
The voice is not an early riser – in the morning (or after a longer break in speaking) it does not want to get going straight away. So treat her to a warm-up phase : Voice training also includes relaxation and stretching exercises , both in the mouth and head area and on the whole body.
The right posture
When speaking, make sure you always have firm contact with the floor and relax your stomach.3 Otherwise you risk tension, cramps and, in the long term, even bad posture. Techniques such as yoga or Pilates, which you can practice regularly to stretch and strengthen your body muscles, can help.
Take the time you need when speaking. Meanwhile, take short breaks to catch your breath . The healthiest thing for the voice is to breathe through the nose : This preheats the air in the sinuses and already filters out coarse dirt particles. By the way, you have the most air available with the help of deep abdominal breathing (also: diaphragmatic breathing or full breathing).
Don’t clear your throat, but cough
We all know the proverbial frog in the throat. If you want to keep your voice healthy, you should then avoid clearing your throat . This puts a strain on the mucous membranes of the vocal folds and stimulates the production of mucus. Instead, cough, take a sip of water, or suck on a candy.
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Pauses in speaking and resting
If the voice is tired, give it the rest it needs. Constant talking puts a strain on the vocal cords and can lead to hoarseness and a sore throat. Especially those who have to talk a lot for work should remain silent as often as possible. There is an absolute ban on speaking in the case of inflammation in the ear, nose and throat area – until you are healthy again.
Need to speak in a noisy environment? Don’t try to drown out the noise around you – it strains your voice. Instead, get a microphone if you know in advance that your presentation can get loud. By the way: Whispering is also bad for the voice, as it also strains the vocal cords. So it’s all about the right balance.
Dry, cold or dusty air puts a strain on the voice.3 Therefore, make sure that the air humidity is always high enough. In addition to regular airing, wet towels on the heater, for example, can help in winter .
Drink a lot
As with almost everything in life, the same applies to vocal hygiene: drink, drink, drink! Sufficient liquid ensures that the mucous membranes remain well moistened – this keeps the vocal tract supple. It should be at least two liters a day, preferably water and unsweetened tea. Herbal teas with beneficial medicinal plants are particularly suitable, such as sage, chamomile or thyme. Good to know: Sage tea is also suitable for inhaling or gargling!5
The right diet
Certain foods are known to have bad effects on the voice. Alcohol and coffee, for example, dry out the mucous membranes in the throat.2 The same applies to black and green tea and cola.2 So only enjoy these stimulants in moderation .
You should completely avoid cigarette smoke (also passive smoking): In case of contact, the mucous membrane in the larynx reacts with increased mucus production. This can cause the mucous membranes to thicken, the vocal folds to vibrate more slowly, and the voice to sound deep and hoarse.
Already knew? Spicy and acidic foods irritate the throat and can cause heartburn or sore throats, which in turn can trigger voice disorders.3 So, before an important speaking event, you should eliminate them from the menu . The same is true of mucus foods like dairy and bananas .
Physical activity trains the diaphragm. Sport is therefore suitable for strengthening the voice as part of the entire organism. This is important because powerful movements are required when speaking or singing. It is best to rely on balanced fitness training with additional strength and stabilization exercises – this is good for the upper body and a useful addition to voice training.
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