How to Wake Up with a Less Raspy Voice
Waking up with a raspy or gravelly voice each morning can be an unpleasant way to start a day. A raspy morning voice is common though, and a condition which many people wake up with. The condition is commonly caused by a mucous coating of the vocal chords, or by stomach juices accumulating in the throat.If you’d like to wake up sounding more natural and without the raspy voice, talk or clear your throat first thing in the morning, and avoid eating or drinking alcohol in the hours before bed.
Regulating Your Voice in the Morning
Start talking shortly after you wake up.The quickest way to get rid of a raspy voice is to talk. Although your voice will sound gritty and unpleasant at first, it will soon even out and you’ll soon find yourself speaking in a normal voice.
- If you don’t want others to hear you talking in a raspy voice, try talking to yourself, talking to your pets, or even talking or singing in the shower.
- Alternately, even if you wait a few hours to begin speaking in the morning, most of the raspy sound will have left your voice. Your voice will sound the hoarsest during the first hour or two after waking up.
Drink water or coffee when you get up.If your vocal chords have dried out overnight, you’ll likely wake up with a raspy, dry voice in the morning. To get rid of the raspy quality as soon as possible, have a large drink of water, coffee, or even orange juice as soon as possible.The liquid will clear any phlegm or liquids that have built up in your throat.
- Vocalists are often advised to squeeze a lemon slice into a glass of water to help “wake up” their vocal cords.
- Avoid drinking milk in the morning, as it is a relatively thick liquid and will not clear your throat well.
Clear your throat gently.If your throat and vocal cords are coated with mucus (which often produces a raspy voice), try clearing your throat to remove the thick, phlegmy coating. This will help your voice to quickly return to its normal quality.
Hum softly to help clear your throat.Humming will “wake up” your voice by causing your vocal cords to vibrate and shake off any mucus coating them. When you hum correctly, you should feel you lips and nose gently vibrating.
- Try humming for 30 seconds, and then saying a few words. See if your voice has improved. If not, hum some more.
Avoiding a Raspy Morning Voice
Eat dinner 3 or 4 hours before going to bed.A raspy morning voice is most often cause by the juices from your stomach sliding up your esophagus and coating your throat. Going without food for 3 or 4 hours before your bedtime will decrease the amount of stomach juice that bathes your throat. This, in turn, will decrease your raspy morning voice.
- If you’re in the habit of having a midnight snack, now is the time to stop. The more time that passes between your last bites of food and going to bed, the more likely you’ll be to have a clear voice in the morning.
Drink less alcohol before bed.Similarly to eating shortly before bed, drinking alcohol will increase the activity of your stomach and encourage more stomach juices to move up into your throat while you’re sleeping. Avoid drinking alcohol in the hours before bed to wake up with less residual stomach juice in your throat, and a less raspy voice.
- Alcohol also has the negative consequence of loosening your muscles and allowing stomach juices to come up more easily.
Breathe through your nose when you sleep.If you breathe through your mouth while sleeping, the lining of your vocal cords will dry out. This will result in a dry, raspy voice in the morning. Try to breathe through your nose while falling asleep, in order to keep your vocal cords from drying out or becoming coated in mucus.
- Of course, it’s impossible to control how you breathe while you’re sleeping. But, if you start out breathing through your nose and avoid sleeping on your back, you’re likely to continue breathing through your nose.
Correcting Long-Term Causes
Avoid yelling yourself hoarse.This is a commonsense rule, but if you shout yourself hoarse at night—for example, at a loud concert, a bar or club, or at a sporting event—you’ll likely wake up with a sore throat and a raspy voice in the morning. To avoid this, moderate the amount you yell or shout at loud events, and speak in a regular voice as much as possible.
- A raspy voice induced by having shouted for hours will last much longer than a typical raspy throat. You may be hoarse all day.
Stop inhaling smoke.Cigarette smoking, in addition to causing long-term health problems, can dry out and irritate your vocal cords. This can lead to a raspy, hoarse voice, especially if you smoke at night or before bed. Long-term cigarette use can also lead to a permanently hoarse voice, and to the growth of polyps on your vocal cords.
- Smoke inhalation doesn’t have to come from cigarettes. If you regularly camp or barbeque, and sit downwind of the fire or grill, you will inhale smoke. This can also cause a raspy voice the following morning.
Talk to a doctor if a raspy voice lasts over two weeks.If you wake up with a raspy voice day after day, or if your raspy voice persists throughout the afternoon and evening every day, it may be a sign of a medical condition.
- On the mild side, a raspy voice can be caused by a cold or seasonal allergies. More seriously, a raspy voice can be a sign of rheumatoid arthritis, a thyroid disorder, or even laryngeal cancer.
- If you’re concerned that you may be suffering from one or more of these conditions, schedule an appointment with your primary-care physician.
QuestionHow do you sing with a raspy voice?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerSome people have a raspy voice naturally, or get one from years of smoking. Just sing in your own voice.Thanks!
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