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Remedy for stuffiness?

Discussion in 'Vocals' started by R_Spaulding, Mar 20, 2006.

  1. R_Spaulding

    R_Spaulding Guest

    Does anyone know of good a way to clear up a slightly stuffy nose for a vocalist? Any over-the-counter stuff? or any home remedies?

  2. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    The most common and effective drug for this problem is pseudoephedrine, but I don't think it's too good for one's voice. Better slightly dry than all clogged up though I'd suppose.
  3. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    My mother is a former Metropolitan opera star from the late 1940s. When afflicted by this same problem, she would go to the sink, turn on only the hot water, place a towel over her head and the sink and breathe the steam in for as long as she/you can tolerate. The steam will help break up the mucus along with keeping the nasal passages and throat moisturized.

    Pseudoephedrine, is a relative of adrenaline and constricts blood vessels which as David surmised is not really good for a singer. Benadryl is only an antihistamine which also can double as a sleeping aid and should also not be administered to a singer. You should also not operate heavy equipment, like electric guitars with huge martial stacks while under the influence of Benadryl. You may want to consider Claritin? But that is also an antihistamine that does not cause drowsiness.

    I'm ready for bed!
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  4. CharlesDayton

    CharlesDayton Active Member

    I had an actor come in for ADR with a cold! Imagine all those actors who hate ADR who's agents call in sick for them, and this one is actually sick and comes in!!! Hot tea, honey and patience.
  5. Nirvalica

    Nirvalica Guest

    well, Flonase (sp?) works really well for me. clears your nose of all that nasty. unfortunatly, its perscription, not over the counter. steam works well. sometimes sticking out your bottom lip, and blowing air up your nose works. i know it sounds weird, but it works for me sometimes.

    also, remy, you know its Marshall stacks, not martial stacks, right?
  6. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    Nirvalica! LOL Ha! Voice-recognition software is a beautiful thing! It makes for some great comedy doesn't it?? I didn't even catch that one. And of course, you're quite correct.

    Divorced, single
    Ms. Remy Ann David
    is there any wonder?
  7. pmolsonmus

    pmolsonmus Well-Known Member

    As a singer and vocal coach - if it's indeed a "slightly" stuffy nose - I would advise them not to take anything. Most of the problems are only slightly audible to anyone other than the singer him/herself.

    If the runny nose is a bigger problem then the steam/ humidity trick is best . I usually heat water in a pot, add some citrus or tea (for placebo effect only - nice smells help mind set) and put a towel over my head.

    The only over the counter med I consider taking as a last resort for congestion is guiafressinin (sp. - I can never remember how that's spelled)
    It may not help with nasal congestion but works well on chest congestion and that to me is the bigger issue. If I can't breathe it doesn't matter what cavity is resonant or not.

    Guiafressinin /fennison/ ??? is one of the major meds in one of the Robitussen versions. As a singer I haven't taken any psuedophed or other antihistimines in about 10 years!

    Water, hard candy, rest, and mental toughness (not allowing yourself the excuse of a cold, or .....) to get in the way of sounding your best.

  8. Nirvalica

    Nirvalica Guest

    hehe, i guess theres a downside to everything. Im also on the Guitar World message boards, and i remember some new kid came on and posted a question asking what martial stack he should buy. it was funny, but we got him goin in the right direction.
  9. TeddyG

    TeddyG Well-Known Member

    guafenessin syrup --- ???

    Seems to be spelled that way on the internet, but what does the internet know?? Anyhow, I believe you can get it, just it, by itself, at the drug store with no prescription? Matter of fact, I may mosey over later on to see - I could use some - instock - myself. Yeah, the "steam" --- ahhhhh... helps with my many headaches, too... geez, i'd love to have my own sauna...... though I just waste the shower water, far as it goes, before heading to the studio. Course, the main studio I head for is just accross the hall from my bathroom -- I can even work naked, for awhile, and run right back to the shower if I need to!(Though NEVER WET! I always carefully dry-off, as I've had quite enough electrocution to last me.)...

    Honey? Lemon? Yeah... warm is nice... Hey! A tip from the TG kitchen! Try the "different" honeys! Orange Blossom, Clover, whatever, you might find they are, ahh, different? Inotherwords, they can taste different and you might find one you like better?

    Oh! Working in a warm room helps me - keeps things "running" as it were(This is getting disgusting now!) - with a good supply of tissues at hand - well, at nose...

    T "a-CHOO! - working naked can be a bit drafty - playing with the honey can be fun, though!(OK, enough M. G! Go to your corner, or we'll see if washing your mouth out with soap helps your voice!)" - G.
  10. Nirvalica

    Nirvalica Guest

    yea, i have a bad cold now and really stuffy nose. in the last few days, hot showers REALLY helped clear it for a little while. also just getting up and moving around works. how bout somethin like dayquill?
  11. TeddyG

    TeddyG Well-Known Member

    Yeah, sure, maybe? I guess if you have a "cold", all of this stuff might help, though, lately I read(somewhere?) that NONE of the over-the-counter snake-oil does a damned thing? I do remember NyQuil, years ago, helping, but I might attribute that to it's 50 proof(25%) alcohol content? I'm not a drinker so a little swig of that could, indeed, knock me out(Though that's not good while standing at the mic?)! A "doubleshot" and I was downright happy to have a cold! Anyway they've long ago reduced the alcohol so it doesn't help as much anymore... I still like Vicks Formula 44? Again, though, none of these remedies should be taken JUST for one's "normal" voice problems, I suppose...... If I was a drinker? I'd try a sip or two of a nice brandy... Blackberry or something? Not a bottle of it! Just a little sip or two... or three......

    A speech professor(I went to college for a day - it was fun!) told me, years ago that the "Halls" type remedies(With the Eucalyptus and such), are NOT good for the throat! That's what she told me..? The "Luden's" drops seem to help, some? They are mostly sugar though, which shouldn't help? I don't know...... She did say to "keep hydrated", to "always have something to sip on and keep sipping!". For years, it's been Pepsi, for me(Has to be terrible?), water for some(Dries me out.). Lately, lemonade(Also terrible - just sugar water and pasteurized lemon juice)...

    I like the Sudafed tablets. NO! NOT Sudafed, the other one! Right next to the Sudafed, on the shelf at the drug store. Yeah, that one(The generic one, though, of course). One of those in the morning when I'm stuffed seems to help, though, as mentioned, it can dry one out considerably and some of that stuff can make one downright hyper(At least me)! So, what to do..?

    "Tough it out!" I think someone mentioned this? Certainly, if one gets a gig, one can't say, wimpily, "oh, I hab a code", or they'll give your gig to someone else! So, I just go, cough on as many people as possible, to share the wealth, keep hydrated with whatever's around(One studio keeps Philadelphia's own - "Frank's Black Cherry Wosniac", in stock -- good stuff! Yummy anyway, if little help to my throat...) and do the best I can...

    T "ummp-hummm" G
  12. PJManOfMrE

    PJManOfMrE Guest

    A non-drug solution is a Breathe Right strip. At one time they had a menthol version, but I am not sure if they still do.

  13. pmolsonmus

    pmolsonmus Well-Known Member

    Hey Teddy,

    The benefit of guafennesin is that it clears congestion (primarily chest congestion) without drying out the vocal mechanism. Its the only thing I've found that doesn't negatively impact singing with its side-effects.

    But I usually advise (and use) nothing except mental toughness, water and hard candy.

  14. traveler

    traveler Guest

    You're all in luck. What you want is a new NON prescription product easily found in every competent grocery store in their pharmacy section. It is called "Musinex" which is a nice 12 hour time released Guanefisen. What it does is clarifys or loosens mucus with NO adverse effects in any other regards and has NO side effects. This combined with drinking lots of hot tea and honey works wonders. The real key (if possible) would be to delay a session overnight and give the person a chance to get one good day under their belt with some Musinex and water/tea and give it a chance to do it's magic. The last cold I had lasted only 3 days. I credit use of another product I keep close at hand. At the FIRST sign of any infection, like a slightly sore throat or weird feeling start on ZICAM. Once again it is over the counter and is a pump gel you pump once into each side of your nose holding it for 5 seconds after application. It is basically zinc, which interstingly enough viruses don't replicate in the presence of. You DON"T snort it. It's presence in the entry to the septum is enough to thwart the onset of a cold/virus that is nasal oriented. Over the course of 3 years I've been using this stuff, I've had 2 colds, which lasted only a maximum of 3 days (instead of the usual 5-7 days). Sure beats being sick.
  15. traveler

    traveler Guest

    I almost forgot to mention......if there is NO way to delay your session and you need pretty immediate results, got out and get some Apple Cider and Cinnamon sticks. Heat up the Apple Cider (as you would tea) and place the cinnamon sticks in it for added flavor (and effect as cinnamon is a known anti bacterial agent in the homeopathic world). The warmed Cider breaks up the mucus, heals membranes with it's Vitamin C and you're off and running. Sure works for me when I'm tracking or have a lady tracking along with me.
  16. Afrin nasal spray is great. As it is a spray, there are none of the side effects of a pill, which gets distributed throughout the body. Works in about 5 minutes, and lasts for 12 hours. It is over the counter.

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