If you’ve injured your vocal cords through singing, you’ll want to get back on your feet (or, er, your cords, I suppose) as quickly as possible. One great treatment for a sore throat caused by singing is warm honey. Honey lubricates the vocal cords, easing pain and allowing for some quick healing. It also tastes delicious.
Here are a few tips for using honey to treat a damaged singing voice.
Warm It Up
Always drink honey in a warm liquid, but avoid caffeine-heavy liquids, as these might cause more problems than they fix. This is particularly true if you’re going to keep singing (again, you really shouldn’t if you can avoid it at all). Caffeine causes the vocal cords to sort of seize up, which can make the pain worse. It can also greatly restrict your vocal range, so keep that in mind if you’re ever looking for something warm to drink on the day of a vocal performance.
Instead of coffee or black tea, try green tea. A bit of honey will help your singing voice much more quickly with warm-to-hot green tea, and it’ll taste pretty decent, too. Put in about two teaspoons of honey, and avoid putting any dairy products in the tea, as dairy products can cause excess phlegm to build up in the throat, limiting the vocal cord healing properties of the honey.
Honey sprays are available from some companies, and they’re intended to lubricate the vocal cords quickly, allowing them to heal. If your singing voice has been damaged by a performance, you might find these sprays useful. However, in my experience, simply drinking the honey works just as well.
Some singers prefer to take a few teaspoons of honey straight. If you don’t like tea, I suppose that this is a good alternative, but I’d still get some warm water. Warming up the vocal cords is important when treating a damaged singing voice, because essentially you’re dealing with sore muscles. Anything that would work on sore legs or arms will be helpful on sore vocal cords, except BenGay (ouch).
Finally, be sure to reevaluate your vocal style if your voice is regularly sore every time that you perform. This should never be the case, and if you want to keep singing and improving your voice, you’ll need to watch for errors in technique that could permanently damage it. Talk to a singing coach for tips.
Do you have any questions about treating a damaged singing voice? Post in our comments section below.