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Music Expert Says a Few Simple Steps Will Save Voice From Sound of Silence

December 12, 1987|United Press International

CARSON — Like the physical parts of the body, your voice requires some care. You can keep your vocal cords running smoothly by taking a few simple steps, according to Sally Etcheto, a music instructor at California State University, Dominguez Hills, who gives the following tips:

- If you detect symptoms of a cold or other respiratory ailment, increase your consumption of fluids and vitamin C.

- When you come down with a cold or strain your voice, avoid any situation where you might have to overwork your voice. Don't hesitate to coddle it.

- If your throat is sore, avoid public speaking and smoky rooms.

- Trying to talk above someone else's loud voice can strain your voice.

- Keep your throat moist. If you are in a dry environment, such as in an airplane, compensate for the lack of humidity by drinking extra fluids. Using a humidifier at home will also help.

- Eat soothing foods, such as chicken soup, when your throat is scratchy. Avoid milk products, which produce a lot of mucus.

Individuals who abuse their voices may develop callouses on the vocal cords, known as vocal nodes, Etcheto warns.

Politicians, ministers, children who scream a lot, singers, cheerleaders and alcohol abusers are particularly susceptible to vocal nodes and voice strain.

In most cases, when the abuse stops, the vocal problems will disappear, Etcheto says.

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