The throat carries food to the esophagus and are to the windpipe. It has an important role in health. But, many of us rarely care about our throat unless it feels scratchy, dry and tight or starts to hurt when we swallow. Most people forget that the throat needs care as the rest of the body. Here are some habits you should start to maintain throat health.
1. Stay hydrated: the vocal cords are made of protective cushioned layers of soft tissues that have to be kept moist to stay healthy. Stay away from caffeine and alcohol that prevent the body from retaining water. Instead, grab a bottle or a glass of water, not sodas. It is recommended that we drink 6-8 glasses of water per day, or higher.
2. Clean toothbrush: The toothbrush needs cleaning like the mouth need regular cleaning. The toothbrush can harbor germs and bacteria from the food and other materials that could have been stuck in it after brushing. Before brushing your teeth, mix a teaspoon of salt in a cup of hot water and soak your toothbrush in it. The salt concentration will dehydrate bacteria cells, hindering bacteria from growing.
3. Hygiene is important: Practicing basic hygiene is important like washing the hands before eating and not sharing eating utensils and other personal items. This can go a long way to prevent a sore throat. It keeps viral or bacterial throat problems from spreading to others.
4. Rest the throat: When you use your throat for extended periods, be sure to give yourself some vocal naps once in a while. This is important if your work involves a lot of talking and speaking, as a teacher. Find quiet ways to spend breaks rather than engaging in conversation.
5. Saline solution: using a salt rinse can disinfect because it can hinder bacterial growth. Gargle with a mixture of salt and warm water before bed.
6. Warm up the throat muscles: stretching cold muscles can result in injury. If you’re a singer, actor, speaker, teacher, or doctor, do some vocal warm ups every morning to condition the vocal chords.
7. No smoking: if you already smoke, try to quit, if you haven’t started, great! Don’t! Smoking raises the risk of throat cancer and inhaling smoke can irritate the vocal cords.