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6 Tips to Keep Your Voice Healthy and Strong

Sore ThroatContributor: Michael Benninger, MD

Whether it’s on the job or taking care of a busy family, we use our voices all the time. Most of us don’t think too much about our voices until we lose them temporarily because of illness.

Often this happens after you have a bad cold that develops into laryngitis, often accompanied by severe coughing and  hoarseness. Most of the time, your voice recovers after a few days. But every once in awhile, the hoarseness doesn’t go away, and your voice stays low-pitched and raspy. Your voice might improve with rest, but because of work and family responsibilities, often it’s impossible to reduce your voice use. So your hoarse voice persists.

Temporary hoarseness occurs in almost everyone, and almost 20 percent of the U.S. population has some degree of chronic voice dysfunction. This number is dramatically worse in voice-intensive occupations. School teachers report problems with their voices 60 percent of the time in their lifetime and 11 percent at any given time.

Learn how to care for your vocal asset