More from Annie Gill

I was prescribed voice therapy and began to work with Melissa Bidlack (MS, MM, CCC-SLP) at the GBMC/Johns Hopkins Voice Center. Melissa, a soprano and voice therapist, was amazing, and all of the vocal health advice I will recommend comes from her and my own voice teacher Elizabeth Daniels. I began using a cool mist humidifier at night (Crane – about $45 and you can find it at Target). Melissa recommended cool mist at night, and warm steam throughout the day (as much as possible, as much as you like). I highly recommend the Vick’s personal steamer ($30 – you can order from Amazon).

Take note of your speaking voice.

She also recommended taking breaks during teaching (at least one 15 minute break for every 2-3 hours of teaching). I also had to reevaluate my speaking voice – I tend to speak very aggressively, because I am a high energy person – I have to make sure I take the time to break before I speak (just like I breathe when I sing – well supported). And, of course, the best thing to maintain a healthy instrument is constant study and practice (with good technique). I usually practice every day, and maybe take one day off a week. But singing well helps my speaking voice – and maintaining a consistent singing routine allows for better, healthier speaking when I teach.

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