It’s important to lubricate the throat when singing, because dry vocal cords can lead to a hoarse sound and even damage your throat. Aside from considering which drinks are good and bad for singers, did you also know that the temperature of your fluids affect your vocal cords too? So should singers drink cold water?
Cold water can shock the vocal cords and create tension which limits your vocal range and ability. But, hot water can cause inflammation and increase mucus production. Stick to room-temperature water which enables flexibility in your cords.
So is cold or hot water good for your singing voice? How about eating ice? What drinks that are good for your voice? Read on to find out more.
Are ice cubes good or bad for singers?
The temperature of ice cubes can shock the vocal cords – especially when eaten by themselves and not within a drink. Think about when you exercise. You warm up the muscles beforehand, because if you exercised on cold muscles, you’re more likely to cause injury. This is the same with singing. Ice cubes can negatively affect your voice by impairing your cords’ flexibility so they can’t function properly.
In order to hit high notes, the cords need to stretch. But if they’re cold, they’ll freeze up and this action is much harder. As such, warming up the voice and then eating ice cubes would be counterproductive.
However, ice cubes are good for you in some scenarios. If you have swollen vocal cords or have sung excessively and your tone sounds strained, ice cubes can help to ease any discomfort. Incorrect placement, forcing your voice and singing for a long time can put pressure on the vocal cords. This pressure is usually caused from swelling, and holding an ice pack to your throat can reduce this swelling so you can get back to singing again.
Is cold water good or bad for singers?
First, when discussing cold water, we’re referring to drinking a bottle of water straight from the fridge. It’ll likely have some condensation on the bottle and be refreshing on a summer’s day. Proper hydration is an important of singing because then the vocal cords have enough moisture to move freely. Surrounding the vocal cords, you have muscles which help to expand and cords for high notes. Cold water impacts these muscles.
Cold water can restrict the surrounding muscles so your voice can’t achieve the movements it needs. Imagine you’re in a cold room. You’re less likely to want to move, and even if you do, your performance isn’t the same as if you were warmer. It’s the same principle with cold vocal cords.
Is hot water best for singers?
But, to say that cold water is bad for singers, implies that hot water is the best option. But, that isn’t the case. Hot fluids increase mucus that lines the pharynx which can affect your tone. Also, if you swallow hot fluids, this is likely to cause inflammation which will increase sensitivity and make singing overall more difficult and uncomfortable. If the water you drink is around 65 degrees Celsius, you’re at risk of damaging your vocal cords – which you might not feel immediately after the drink.
We advise singers to drink room-temperature water as this has many benefits on the voice. Leave your water in a room for 30 minutes before drinking it so the temperature can adjust to your surroundings.
Room-temperature water can reduce thickened mucus, and we all know how irritating mucus can be. Tap water is riddled with chemicals and toxins, so opt for a water filter or boil the kettle and leave the water to hit room temperature instead.
What do you drink before a performance? Are there certain temperature drinks that you avoid? Let us know in the comments below.