Losing one’s voice is almost always annoying, but for a voiceover professional, it is downright devastating. Time without a voice means time away from the studio. The loss of time is also generally a loss of money. So, avoiding hoarseness is paramount in this industry. This begins with understanding what can cause a problem.
1. The Common Cold! The most common cause of hoarseness is respiratory infection, which begins, most often, as the common cold. At the first sign of cold, flu, or other respiratory complications, it is essential to take precautions to avoid loss of one’s voice. The professionals have several recommendations for treating a cold. For the voiceover artist, the most essential three are blowing the nose, drinking hot liquids, and gargling. Blow your nose to remove mucus, but do so gently. Blowing too hard can cause irritation to the ears, throat, and vocal chords. Gargle with salt water to reduce the risk of a sore throat. Drink hot tea or other warm beverages (preferably without milk or cream) to ease inflammation in nose and throat. Traditional Medicinals Throat Coat Tea is a popular product among voice actors. And simply warm water with honey and lemon can soothe the throat.
2. Vocalchord Cysts or Polyps! If symptoms occur suddenly and without any additional symptoms, consult a physician. It could be a cyst or polyp on the vocal chord. The sooner this is treated, the better for your career.
3. GERD! There are medical treatments for gastroesophageal reflux disease, so do speak to your doctor. You can also ease the trouble at home, which begins with weight loss. Being overweight puts you at much greater risk of this condition. Avoid foods that are known to make symptoms worse. Get more vitamin D in your diet, as it acts as a natural defense against the stomach acid.
4. Allergies! There are many highly-effective allergy medications on the market. Many can be purchased over-the-counter. There are also specialists that can help people get better control over their allergic symptoms. Try to avoid products with antihistamines in them since they are a drying agent and will dry out your throat as well as your mucus.
5. Smoking! This is easy to solve. There is no better time than right now to quit.