How to Get Rid of a Sore Throat

September 7, 2021

What is a sore throat?

A sore throat, also known as tonsillitis or pharyngitis, is an inflammation of the tissues in your mouth and neck. It's caused by bacteria that enter through tiny openings called "pores" on your tongue and inside your cheeks. The most common cause of this infection is viral illness such as colds, flu, or strep infections.

How can I ease sore throat pain?

There are many ways to treat sore throats: gargling with warm salt water; using over-the-counter medications like cough drops, lozenges, and antihistamines; taking OTC pain relievers; drinking plenty of fluids; eating foods rich in vitamin C; getting enough rest, and avoiding alcohol and smoking. If you have any concerns about your health, consult your doctor immediately.

  • Salt water - Gargling with salt water helps to reduce swelling and irritation.
  • OTC Pain Relievers and Antihistamines - A pain reliever, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, may dull or relieve the throat pain but is also known to trigger other symptoms that can make a sore throat feel worse. Antihistamines can counteract this overreaction while maintaining the overall soothing effects.
  • Drinking Fluids - Drinking fluids is a simple way to help clear mucous membranes and prevent sinus infections. Warm liquids, such as tea or chicken noodle soup, soothe the back of the throat and can reduce coughing.
  • Vitamin C - This vitamin, which is commonly found in fruits, has a multitude of health benefits when taken in healthy doses. One is that it aids in the production of white blood cells which work to protect the body from infection.
  • Rest - Making a conscious effort to physically rest one's body and voice to alleviate some sort of pain should never be underestimated. Be aware, however, that lying flat can occasionally cause swelling as this approach results in abnormal pressure at the back of the throat.
  • Alcohol and Smoking - Along with acidic foods, these are known to contribute to throat irritation

How long do sore throats last?

The average length of time for a sore throat to go away varies depending upon what type of virus causes the condition. Most people recover within two weeks if they get sick with a milder infection. However, those who catch more severe forms often experience longer recovery times. In addition, children tend to suffer from sore throats much longer than adults because their immune systems aren't fully developed yet.

How to prevent a sore throat or cold.

Preventing a sore throat starts before you even leave home! Here are three tips to keep yourself safe and to help prevent a sore throat:

1) Wash hands frequently throughout the day.

2) Avoid sharing drinks and utensils.

3) Cover your nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing.

If you're already feeling ill, try not to touch your eyes, nose, or mouth until you've washed your hands thoroughly.

When should I call my doctor about my sore throat?

Collier advises using common sense when deciding whether to seek medical attention. Our team at Collier Otolaryngology can help you with any throat issues including:

  • Severe throat pain
  • Trouble swallowing
  • White patches on the back of your throat
  • White patches on the back of your throat
  • High fever
  • Extended loss of voice
  • And more 

Contact us today to schedule your appointment with Collier Otolaryngology.

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