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The Trombone ForumTeaching & LearningPractice Room(Moderator: blast) How Do I Keep My Throat and Trachea Moist in the Winter Months?
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Author Topic: How Do I Keep My Throat and Trachea Moist in the Winter Months?  (Read 524 times)
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Steven

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« on: Dec 01, 2017, 08:05PM »

This only a problem in the cold months when the heat is on.  Taking a deep breath or playing (singing) until my lungs are close to empty causes me to cough.  It is not good to cough while playing.  How do I keep my throat and trachea moist enough so this does not happen?  I drink enough water, but my breathing passages are dry.  This is more of a problem when singing, but it is somewhat of a problem when playing trombone.
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« Reply #1 on: Dec 02, 2017, 01:12AM »

Lozenges.  Fisheman's Friend - what I use...
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« Reply #2 on: Dec 02, 2017, 05:56AM »

Perhaps concentrating on breathing through the nose?

I think breathing through the mouth dries the passages out more.  I'm not sure how much you can avoid it playing or singing though.
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Tim Richardson
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« Reply #3 on: Dec 02, 2017, 06:35AM »

You say you drink enough water, but when do you drink it?  I keep a water bottle with me during playing sessions and will grab a quick sip when needed.
 
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« Reply #4 on: Dec 02, 2017, 06:39AM »

Simmer a large pot of water on the stove, or alternatively, fill your bathtub with an inch or two of water and if you have room-specific temperature control, increase the temperature in that bathroom.
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« Reply #5 on: Dec 02, 2017, 06:51AM »

Use a humidifier in your room at night and if you can wherever you are during the day.
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« Reply #6 on: Dec 02, 2017, 07:16AM »

You say you drink enough water, but when do you drink it?  I keep a water bottle with me during playing sessions and will grab a quick sip when needed.

Yes, I've gotten out of the habit of carrying water to rehearsals and performances.  (One more thing to have to carry).  Tomorrow when I'm singing, I will have water with me.
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« Reply #7 on: Dec 02, 2017, 07:19AM »

Use a humidifier in your room at night and if you can wherever you are during the day.

I've thought about this, but my room is kept nice and cool, and is not overly dry.  I spend two hours a day in a car where it is very dry.  My classroom is very dry.  I really can't do anything about this unfortunately.
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« Reply #8 on: Dec 02, 2017, 07:24AM »

Honey. A Tablespoon full can get you moist. Molasses as well if you don't like honey.

I use Biotene mouthwash and toothpaste. I get canker sores when I use regular toothpaste and mouthwash because of the drying.

I put olive oil on just about everything I eat.

Sometimes a tbs of coconut oil, swish around in the mouth for a bit and spit it out.
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« Reply #9 on: Dec 02, 2017, 07:28AM »

I would get a humidiier for the classroom.
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« Reply #10 on: Dec 02, 2017, 08:09AM »

Use your body properly in rehearsals. If you're suffering, and have the time to do so BREATHE WITH YOUR NOSE.
Nasal passages are designed to humidify your air. And to do so, drink water so YOU are humidified.

If you are age 56, and finding yourself having the symptoms at the end of a breath, check that you do not have adult onset asthma in a small way, or bronchitis.
It might be the symptoms of an easily treated medical condition that only becomes apparent when you push yourself.
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« Reply #11 on: Dec 02, 2017, 08:57AM »

Humidifier
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« Reply #12 on: Dec 02, 2017, 11:13AM »

---snip---
Taking a deep breath or playing (singing) until my lungs are close to empty causes me to cough.

This does not necessarily have to be related to moisture and humidity.
Years back, when I took some singing lessons, I started coughing after a few minutes of intensive breathing exercises. This was caused by hyperreactivity of my bronchi. There are people where the same happens when they come from cold air into warm, moist air which shows that dryness may, but doesn't have to be the cause. 

I hope this doesn't apply to you, of course. Good luck finding a solution!

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« Reply #13 on: Dec 02, 2017, 12:03PM »

There is an alt-med guy named Buteyko.

He has figured out that there are 150 diseases caused by overbreathing, and curable by his breathing exercises.

While there isn't a lot of data to support that, that's probably because there's a conspiracy to hide the results.  Do a google, you'll see. 

But there might be something to his claim that restricted breathing can help stop coughing. 

His book is called Close Your Mouth.  By weird coincidence I read it this week.  The exercise to stop a cough goes something like this:

Take a small breath in then out.  Now breathe in gently through the nose one centimeter of air, then gently out; repeat for 4 minutes, then breathe normally. 
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Tim Richardson
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« Reply #14 on: Dec 02, 2017, 12:58PM »

Drinking water, lozenges, etc might help your mouth by these do not belong in your trachea. Only a humidifier will help with that.
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« Reply #15 on: Dec 02, 2017, 06:12PM »

I have developed adult onset asthma at 47 years of age.

My triggers are cold and dry air and exertion, so I pay attention to these things.

First suggestion, by a small humidity meter (around $10) so you can figure out what parts of your day are your real problems.
They are usually in the hardware stores around the humidifiers.
This will help identify your problem spaces in your day.

Then start knocking off the problem spaces.

Suggestions for a couple of those.

1. Classroom.  A humidifier may help.  If you are working for a school, they may see the suggestion as also protecting others.

2. Dry car in Winter.  - I sometimes wear a cheap painters mask that traps some of the outgoing moisture and humidifies the incoming.
note: the additional moisture may hydrate and loosen phlegm initially, but then it is out.  If dryness is causing irritation, it is lessoned.

that is all for now.

tronbone.
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