Peoria, Ill.,
09:57 AM

Health Highlights: Sing to better health; can't stop coughing?

There's a high note when it comes to singing holiday carols. 

It can boost your health!

OSF HealthCare Family Medicine Physician, Dr. Alina Paul, sings and plays guitar for patients. 

She says benefits include pain reduction, better lung capacity, more confidence and a sense of belonging. It even helps with dementia.

“Don’t take it as an exercise. Don’t do it because you have to. Do it because you want to do it. Anybody can sing. Make a point to sing. It’s like meditation. It’s very beneficial," Dr. Paul says.

 If singing causes your throat or chest to hurt, take a break. 

Another pesky thing that may bother your throat or chest? That lingering cough.

It's common with all of the upper respiratory illnesses going around including colds, COVID-19, flu and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).

If you treated your symptoms and you're feeling better, but the cough is sticking around, Dr. Juanbosco Ayala, a Pulmonologist with OSF HealthCare, has some reasons why.

“A lot of times it’s due to the local inflammation that persists. There’s not much to do for it, we typically recommend antihistamines, and sometimes you’ll have to cycle those," Dr. Ayala says. "It’s usually something that subsides with time. But if it doesn’t, then obviously that may need to be looked at.”

Among the over-the-counter meds that may help clear you up include Claritin-D, Benadryl, Allegra and Mucinex.

Health Highlights Video Version With Chyrons

Health Highlights Video Version With Chryrons 12-20-2023

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Health Highlights Video Version Without Chyrons 12-20-2023

Health Highlights Audio Only

play Health Highlights Audio Version 12-20-2023