Cough Drop Day?

May 13, 2024 01:03 PM By Paul Boucher

Did you know? If you speak for a living (like, ahem, voice actors), natural is likely to be the best fix when you've got a sore throat.

Remember, though, there are no free rides. Everything will have an effect on you. 

This post was inspired by my daughter's spring cold, and it also happens to be Cough Drop Day. No matter what you choose to do (and remember, if it's serious or has lasted longer than 3 or 4 days with no change or a worsening of symptoms, see a doctor), keep it as natural and simple as possible.

  1.     Natural Ingredients: Look for herbal teas like throat formula tea, or have regular warm to hot water with lemon and honey. Remember lemon strips the vocal cords (and is also a diuretic) while honey coats and heals. So honey is often best AFTER you've performed. As for cough drops, look for some made with natural ingredients like honey, lemon, eucalyptus, and menthol. These ingredients can help soothe your throat and alleviate irritation.
  2.     No Artificial Additives: Avoid drinks or cough drops that contain artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. These may irritate the throat or cause other adverse reactions.
  3.     Non-Medicated Options: Some singers and voice actors prefer non-medicated liquids or cough drops that soothe the throat without using active ingredients like menthol or benzocaine, which can sometimes have numbing effects.
  4.     Menthol: If you prefer menthol for its soothing properties, look for liquids or cough drops with moderate menthol. Too much menthol can be overpowering and may affect vocal clarity.
  5.     Sugar-Free Options: For those concerned about the impact of sugar on their vocal health, sugar-free liquids or cough drops may be a better choice. However, be cautious of artificial sweeteners that may cause gastrointestinal discomfort.
  6.     Personal Preference: Ultimately, the best medicine for singers and voice actors may vary depending on personal preference and individual sensitivity.

Traditional Medicinals makes a terrific Throat Coat tea (but the "coat" is right in the name, so performance results will vary).

Yogi also makes soothing tea for the throat.

Ricola, Halls, Fisherman's Friend, and Luden's are some popular brands that offer cough drops suitable for singers and voice actors. Many health food stores also offer natural and herbal cough drop options that may benefit vocal health.

If you've got favourites (or favorites south of the 49th), please share below. Thanks.