Sore throat – Causes and Remedies

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The sore throat is probably the most common reason why people visit the doctor. There are many medical disorders associated to this symptom but infections seem to be the main cause of sore throats and unfortunately, they are also contagious. Typically, the infections are caused by certain viruses such as the flu, the cold or the mononucleosis as well as by certain bacteria like strep, mycoplasma, or hemophilus. A sore throat could be also related to tonsillitis which is an inflammation of the tonsils upon either side of the throat. This is very common especially among children due to the fact that their tonsil glands are more prominent and susceptible to infections. However, the positive aspect is that just a small percent of bacteria are infectious and require close medical care.

Most of the time, a sore throat is much stronger in the morning but it decreases during the day and goes away in about a week. Taking into consideration that the most common causes of a sore throat are viral, it is not recommended to treat them with antibiotics – these should be used to treat bacterial infections rather than viral. Besides, antibiotics do not always speed the healing process or prevent throats from recurring. This is why they should be prescribed a few days after developing a sore throat if this doesn’t respond to other treatments. The soreness should be treated with antibiotics if it is becoming worse and is following other symptoms such as the fever, a yellow discharge at the back of your throat or pain in other areas of the body. In addition, the studies have shown that the fickle weather as well as the atmospheric pressure and humidity may improve or worsen the sore throat.

The easiest way to treat a common sore throat is by consuming plenty of fluids, especially warm fluids as well as paracetamol and soluble aspirin mouth washes/gargles solutions. The natural remedies are also very effective and handy so you should give them a shot. For instance, you should pay attention to your nutrition and try to eat foods that are rich in vitamins A, B, C, D, E and minerals – magnesium, zinc, iron, for they stimulate the body’s natural defenses. You should also take into consideration root vegetables, green leafy vegetables, garlic, radish, horseradish, especially raw, then, cereals, citrus, pepper, oil extracted by cold pressing. In addition, you should stay away from mineral water and carbonated beverages as they irritate even more the neck and prolong the sore throat. The water or spring water are the best as well as the sage tea, basil and the thyme given that they have antiseptic effects, they sooth irritated mucous membranes and stimulate immunity. In order to increase the efficiency, you could also add a teaspoon of honey or lemon juice. However, keep in mind that the fluids must be warm not hot because the hot fluids irritate the throat and slower the healing process.

Another efficient remedy for a sore throat is the gargle – two or three times a day – made with calendula tea mixed with salt, lemon juice or diet sodium bicarbonate. The steam inhalation is a very reliable solution as long as you do it at night and you don’t leave the house until the next day. As you can see, a sore throat can be treated at home with natural remedies but if it persists and is accompanied by other symptoms, you should ask for medical advise in order to prevent other medical complications.