Health Watch — Holiday Havoc: Seasonal Sounds

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications  and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about holiday havoc and how to avoid it. For people who sing, this time of year can be a strain on the vocal cords. There’s caroling, choir performances, special religious services and all the rehearsals that go into preparing for that.

Janis Deane, a speech pathologist who specializes in voice disorders at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says the best thing you can do to keep your voice in shape is stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water — and not coffee or alcohol, which have a drying effect. If you have to do a lot of singing in a short period of time, rest your voice during any breaks you get. Don’t talk or sing when you have the chance to be quiet. You should also avoid smoking and smoky environments. Instead of clearing your throat, take a sip of water. And if you develop a sore throat or a cough, get it treated right away before it develops into something worse.

Visit http://www.utsouthwestern.org/earnosethroat to learn more about
UT Southwestern’s clinical services in ears, nose and throat.

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December 2008

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