Achoo! If you’re battling sniffles, sneezes, and red eyes this season, you’re not alone. Of course, as a singer, this inconvenience presents more of a challenge. Any time you’re dealing with irritation, you’re likely also dealing with inflammation– especially in the delicate regions of your sinuses and throat.
Here are some tried and true tips for managing your allergy symptoms, without risking additional harm to your vocal apparatus:
- Be careful which over-the-counter medications you reach for to correct those pesky symptoms. All antihistamines are drying to some extent, but of course, each body is different, so you’ll want to take careful note of side effects as you experience them. In general, many nasal allergy sprays can be particularly harsh for singers since they often contain both an antihistamine and steroid ingredients.
- Flush it out! The less time the irritant is making contact with your sensitive tissues, the better. A basic saline nasal spray can help clear pollens and irritants from your nasal passages without risk, and if you really want to wash things out, consider trying a neti pot!
- Stay Hydrated. The more you keep your body hydrated, the more you will thin out excess mucus. Rest assured that your sensitive passages are coated with protective mucus– it might feel like too much at times, but you definitely want too much instead of too little. Moisture is your friend (although it may not seem like it right now) and will help keep you from causing more abrasion on possibly irritated vocal folds. If you’re experiencing too much mucus for singing, consider a gentle seasalt gargle to help combat extra phlegm and also encourage healing from any extra swelling or irritation.
- Steam is so soothing to irritated sinuses, throats and vocal folds! Whether it’s an extra long shower, breathing over a boiling pot of water with a towel over your head, or even a personal steamer, you’ll breathe a little easier in no time. A cup of hot tea can have soothing effects, too– reach for “Throat Coat” or “Throat Comfort” or any similar teas which contain Licorice Root for the ultimate pampering.
Of course, avoid exposure to your known allergy triggers where you can, and give yourself grace in this irritating season. Above all, don’t force your voice to do things it can’t comfortably do, and as this season passes, you’ll be back at the top of your game.
Want to learn more about healthy vocal function? Book your complimentary consultation today!