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You’ve heard of major music stars like Adele, John Mayer, and Keith Urban having been silenced by recent throat surgeries in order to correct various vocal problems like polyps, vocal cord hemorrhages, and granuloma. But just because you don’t sing for a living doesn’t mean you’re not at risk for developing similar throat troubles.
According to a study in Occupational Medicine, 53 percent of teachers have suffered from intermittent voice problems at one point in their career. In fact, pretty much any occupation which involves lots of cheers and jeers could also be putting your vocal cords at risk.
We’re not saying you have to keep your mouth shut all day for the rest of your life. Here's a few simple tricks to help save your voice:
Practice commanding attention by speaking in a softer voice. People will be forced to listen to you no matter your volume.
Cut back on coffee and alcoholic drinks as these dry out your vocal cords. Drink water throughout the day to keep them wet.
Avoid hanging out too long in environments which are too loud. Not only does it wreak havoc on your hearing, the need to scream in order to talk to your friends who are just a few feet away is definitely not going to help your vocal chords.
Check with a doctor if your raspy throat lingers on way longer for more than 2 to 3 weeks, Rosow advises. “There are lots of things that can cause hoarseness, from polyps to cancer,” he says. “It’s better to know sooner rather than later which problem you’re dealing with.”