Sore Throat – Symptoms and Treatment

A sore throat is a disease primarily located in the area around the tonsils. It is also known as pharyngitis or tonsillitis.The pharynx is the part of the throat that lies between the mouth and the larynx or voice box. It is associated most commonly with the common cold or influenza. While most sore throats heal without complications, in some cases, they develop into a serious illness.

Sore throat refers to the inflammation of the pharynx or back of the throat. It occurs frequently when a person has a cold or an attack of influenza. 10% of sore throat may be due to strep throat infection. Strep throat is an infection of the pharynx, caused by group A streptococcus bacteria, whereas sore throat may be a viral or a bacterial infection. Strep throat is common among children and teenagers, between the ages of 5 to 15.

Sore throats have many different causes, and may or may not be accompanied by cold symptoms, fever,or swollen lymph glands. Proper treatment depends on understanding the cause of the sore throat.

Sore throats are normally caused by either a viral or bacterial infection. The most important difference between a virus and bacteria is that bacteria respond well to antibiotic treatment and viruses do not. A sore throat is commonly spread by: sharing drinks, kissing, coughing, nose blowing, and sneezing.

Symptoms

Symptoms of sore throat throughout the body include fever, headache, nausea, and malaise. These may be present with either a viral or bacterial infection. Symptoms specific to the throat include pain with swallowing for pharyngitis and a hoarse voice when laryngitis is present. Cold viruses tend to cause more coughing and runny nose than strep throat.

For the vast majority of sore throats, there are no treatments to cure the disease. These cases of sore throat are caused by viruses, against which there are few medications. Antibiotics may be prescribed for bacterial sore throats. But they will have no effect on viral sore throats.

Cinnamon is regarded as an effective remedy for a sore throat resulting from a cold. One teaspoon of coarsely powdered cinnamon, boiled in a glass of water with a pinch of pepper powder, and two teaspoons of honey can be taken as a medicine in the treatment of this condition. Two or three drops of cinnamon oil, mixed with a teaspoon of honey, also give immense relief

Therefore, drinking enough fluids is very important. When it is hard to drink, it is important to decrease your body’s requirements for fluid through rest and lowering any fever that is present. Choose high-quality fluids such as soup broth (which replaces both salt and water losses) and sugar-containing solutions (they help the body absorb the fluids more rapidly). Avoid caffeine because it can cause water loss.

Complications

Complications such as rheumatic fever (inflammation of connective tissue and joint pain), scarlet fever (fever with body rash), tonsil abscess, and glomerulonephritis (kidney disease) can result from untreated streptococcal infection. Severe pharyngitis associated with Corynebacterium diphtheriae and infectious mononucleosis can obstruct the airway and cause lower respiratory problems (e.g., pneumonia).