• Milly

How to sing when you're sick

So I have done two hour vocal performances before whilst having, The Flu, Strep Throat, Stomach Flu, Bad Colds, viral infections and more. The only thing I can’t sing with is the dreaded laryngitis as it inflames the Larynx (The Voicebox) and it can be near impossible to talk with let alone sing.

Now I firmly believe food takes a massive part in this, but that’s going to be another blog as I am still exploring different healthy ways to eat whilst out late on performances. With that being said I have always had a bad immune system and always had bad sleeping patterns. Sleeping enough is so important and I cant even stress that enough, without enough shut eye, nothing means anything, it doesn’t matter if you eat well, take vitamins, sleep is a must.

However sometimes you just have to get through your gig. Unless its total voice loss as I said before. But my moto is, if you can talk, you can sing! It is more ideal to just get better but I mean if you really must get through a two hour set on a virus or a bad cold, there are ways my friend, there are way mwahahahah. If you do all of the things suggested below, its going to help a lot!

Paracetamol /Vitamins

It sounds simple, but you must set alarms and take the dosage every few hours, even if you are sleeping, wake up to take them and go back to sleep. Also take Vitamin D supplements as well as


Drinking water isn’t the only thing. Orange Juice always helps me as it is full of Vitamin D and helps boost immune system. Drinking herbal teas will help sooth your throat.

Vicks Defense

A friend of mine who is a singer suggested this to me. One word…Magic. As soon as you start to fill unwell, get that thing up your nose! It attacks bacteria before it gets worse and it does work!

Doctor Nelsons Inhaler

Most singers I know who are on tour use this, its one of the only ways to let moisture really reach your vocal chords. Look it up! I got mine for £60 and its well worth the investment.


Having a bunged up noise is quite hard to sing on right? So don't do that gross thing were you hack it back into your nose, it will drip on to your throat and will cause major congestion. Just get that crap out. Put eucalyptus oil inside a humidifier and inhale. It will definitely help!|

Vocal and body Rest

Ok so if my throat is sore and a gig is near, I wont talk for days. Once I didn't speak for 8 days. I use an app called “Talk For Me” If anyone around you gets funny about it and thinks you are being a diva, tell them to sod off. If you are serious about making it through your gig you can do it and the people around you should understand. Also don't feel bad about staying under the covers with some oranges (Vitamin C) and a movie. To get better properly, give your body the best chance it needs and have a 24 hour total rest if you can.


More like Life saver. It's a throat spray that numbs the pain. This little baby is my favourite on a singing job. I would recommend the spray version. Ask behind the counter at your pharmacy. Also try Tyrozets.

Keeping super clean

Might sound obvious but make sure you shower more than normal, don't let germs spread, wash your towels, change your toothbrush a few times, just don't let the germs spread around! Keep tissues in a paper/plastic bag and get rid of them asap! Us singers don't need the lurgy.


I guess being unwell so many times has now given me the advantage that 90% of the time I can sing when I am ill. I have had so much experience I am now able to suggest these things to you and I hope I have helped. Im afraid hot water and lemon doesn't cut it, so try some of the above

Your welcome :)

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