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How to Heal a Hoarse Voice

Learn how to heal a hoarse voice from vocal coach Cari Cole in this Howcast singing tutorial.


Hi I'm Cari Cole. I'm a celebrity vocal coach and artist development expert. And I help artist find their voice, craft their music, and create successful music careers. I've worked with Donald Fagen from Steely Dan, Courtney Love from Hole, I've worked with the band Journey. I'm going to teach you how to be a better singer and performer

So over the years of training singers, I've become an somewhat of an expert, in particular with healing hoarse voices. So for instance I get a lot of referrals from doctors, from ENT voice doctors, to help singers sing more correctly. Often they've come to me and they've come into some kind of problem. So the first thing that I always do is talk about how the body is the instrument and how the vocal instrument is inside the body. So the state of the body to some degree determines the state of your voice. So if you're not sleeping, if you're living a rock star life style and staying up late at night, eating late at night and all these things make a difference in how the voice sounds. So we have to look at all these things when we're healing a hoarse voice. Number one I would say go and get yourself a vocal coach. It's important to learn how to sing correctly and you won't have those problems. Really within a week or two, students I work with don't have those problems. We can resolve them really quickly. Sometimes there are other systemic problems or medical problems that you may want to see an ENT for so it's a little bit more than a day or two that hoarseness is sticking around go and see a professional voice doctor, an ENT. You could have reflux, you could have an allergy problem, there are all kinds of issues with what is causing that hoarseness. I would say the number one thing that causes hoarseness in dehydration. So, 99% of the time when a person has a hoarse voice they're not drinking water. The other 1% of the time is if they're having reflux and laryngeal reflux which we call if for singers is not something where acid is coming up, but as it is washing up unbeknownst to the person therefore we call it singer's reflux or laryngeal reflux. So, if you feel dry all the time and you are constantly drinking water, it is a sign of having reflux so go and see your ENT and check that out as well. So the number one cause of hoarseness that comes from singing and not from reflux and not from dehydration is because you're singing too much and the vocal muscles actually get pushed up in the throat and that causes hoarseness. So if you're feeling hoarseness at the end of your gig, of if you're feeling hoarseness in general after you sing, you want to pull the laryngeal muscles down, and you just do that gently. So you put your fingers kind of at the top of the throat and here's the thyroid cartilage. Go google the thyroid cartilage online so that you can see what it looks like there it really covers about this territory and you want to put your fingers at the top and just begin a yawn and pull it down. So when you pull the larynx down, you pull it down gently, no yanking, but I would say to wrap up this section about having a hoarse voice is number one drink a lot of water, and number two be healthy, eat healthy, get lots of rest, and number three, a little massage in pulling the larynx down will help restore that voice right away.

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