As a vocal coach, I am constantly battling vocal fatigue due to the daily stress I place on my voice. Typically, I am able to teach 30-40 hours a week without much issue. But recently, I started feeling excessive soreness in my throat with no apparent explanation as to why. I spent three weeks trying a long list of natural remedies. None seemed to work.
The really puzzling thing was that I wouldn’t wake up with soreness, but shortly into my first session of the day, I would experience some serious discomfort in my throat. It hurt to vocalize, and I found myself resorting to taking pain killers just so I wouldn’t have to cancel any sessions.
I tried getting more sleep. It kind of worked. For a day. But then I was right back to where I had started. Meanwhile, I had been feeling a slight tickle in my eardrum, which can be an early indicator of a developing ear infection. As a vocal coach, I get mild ear infections regularly due to the constant stress I place on them, so at first, I didn’t think muck of it.
This one seemed to be getting a bit worse than usual, though, so before bed one night, I wet a cotton ball with some hydrogen peroxide, tilted my head to the side, and squeezed the liquid into my ear canal. That was when I became certain that I had an ear infection, because I felt a slight twinge of pain the moment I did it (not a good sign). That meant the infection was definitely more serious than I had thought.
The following day, however, my voice seemed more refreshed. I didn’t experience quite the level of fatigue I had been dealing with for the previous few weeks. So the following night, I poured hydrogen peroxide into my ear again. This time, there was no pain and the fizzle actually felt oddly relaxing.
By day two, it was as if I was back to my old self. I taught a 7-hour day without any issues. What a relief! That night, I poured hydrogen peroxide in my ear again. And again, my voice felt stronger the next day.
Apparently, the ear infection had spread to my throat and was wreaking havoc. While it wasn’t exactly a clinical trial, I am now pretty convinced of the merits of hydrogen peroxide for both ear and throat ailments.
And the next time I feel abnormal inflammation in my throat, or even a slight tickle on my eardrum, I’ll be heading straight to the ol’ medicine cabinet to get some.
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