Cough & Performance Anxiety
I am a professional musician. MAC and bronchiectasis is relatively new to me. I started the compression vest in December and have been nebulizing 2x per day as well as huff coughing. I have a performance at the end of the month and I am getting more and more anxious about it. Reason being, I am afraid of having a coughing fit during my performance. I had a gig this past weekend and, lo and behold, I started coughing in the middle of it. Luckily, it was at an assisted living with a small audience . As a singer (and bassist) I cannot afford for that to happen at my next performance as it will be at a big outdoor festival with a big audience. I am wrestling with the fact that my performance days may be numbered. I am keeping positive however. I am wondering if anyone has a suggestion of how to keep the cough at bay just for the hour I will be performing? I will not be able to vest or neb for hours prior to the performance. Any and all suggestions are appreciated.
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Not a singer/performer but this is also a concern for me if I am talking a in a crowd or have to speak up so people can hear me, it can bring on a cough. Frustrating. I've read that singing is very good for lung health so definitely keep at it if possible! Maybe use albuterol and an extra clearing before the event. Maybe even a puff of albuterol before performance? You might build it into your practice before the performance to see if it is helpful. Possibly avoid known mucus causing food for a day or so ahead? It'd be great to get a RT consult about this. Wishing you a cough-free performance and many years of performing ahead.
Foods to Avoid When Trying to Decrease Mucus Production (Foods-to-Avoid-When-Trying-to-Decrease-Mucus-Production.pdf)
I know this is a tough one to address but I figured I'd reach out anyway. This group has been so helpful and I thank my lucky stars to have found it. I really appreciate your kind words of support and helpful suggestions.
When I needed to do some speaking while my cough was bad, my doc gave me a prescription cough suppressant to use and it worked for 6 hours. I have also used it infrequently when I need to interact with the public and coughing would be problematic (working an informational booth where I talked for 4 hours.) But you need to try it first – it made my mouth slightly dry.
I always doubled up on airway clearance the next day to make sure nothing bad stayed in my lungs.
Thanks, Sue. Could you tell me the name of the suppressant? It sounds like a good possibility.
@equanimous Sue, I have done the same thing when faced with a rare situation where coughing was just not a good thing. My doc prescribed Tramadol 50mg, and I found all I needed was 1/4 of a tablet to suppress a cough while in a dental chair or getting an MRI. Bill
I don't have any on hand right now, but it had dextromethophan and codeine, if I remember correctly.
I use regular menthol cough drops from CVS. Seems to stop coughing for 30-60 minutes.
I’m a music producer and vocalist. It’s been rough for me in the studio as of late especially trying to cut my demo vocals. See if you can get a prescription for Benzonatate. That has been very helpful!
I take mucas relief tablets for coughing; so far, it has really helped me. I hope it will also help you.
I too have had similar experiences..a series of deep coughs that both clear my lungs and make anyone near me (except my wife) take 10 steps away…particularly in the worst days of COVID. Anyway, when I'm in a similar situation..not musical..but giving a talk or even socializing..I take a puff or two of albuterol and sometimes use an OTC cough suppressant DELSYM, and sometimes I use Mucinex (extended)–not a cough suppressant but it seems to work. Also, I try to keep my throat "lubricated by sucking on sugar free Ricola. Obviously, we are all trying to find our way with malady. Good luck and thanks for your concert at the senior center –it's a real mitzvah!