10 Ways to Get Rid of Terrible Sore Throat
A sore throat or Pharyngitis is often a forerunner of an impending upper respiratory tract infection. It may follow a cold or can be followed by a cold, cough and chest infection. It is contagious and spreads by droplet infection through sneezing and coughing. More often than not, it is due to viral infection but can be caused by bacteria. Microscopic examination of the throat swab confirms the causative organism. Like any infection in the body, Pharyngitis can have local and systemic symptoms. As this condition is so common, there have been easy to follow home remedies that can be used to cure this ailment.
Warm saline gargle– Gargling with a pinch of salt in a glass of luke warm water 3-4 times daily helps increase the blood flow to the pharyngeal region, thereby washing away the infection and also reducing the edema associated with the infection. It also loosens the mucus, which can be expelled easily.
Drink plenty of warm liquids – Tea, lemon tea, ginger-lemon tea, soups, cinnamon tea, warm orange juice with lemon drops, honey + lemon juice + crushed ginger in warm water etc. These are common home remedies that are very helpful in relieving a sore throat.
Soft diet – Steamed /microwaved apple, mashed with honey acts as a throat soothener and it is easy to swallow without hurting the throat.
Steam inhalation – With a steamer / hot shower.
Throat sootheners – Cough lozenges, menthol / eucalyptus oil lozenges, honey + lemon. These help by soothing the throat and menthol also causes temporary numbness to the ailing throat. They also increase saliva secretion, thereby preventing dryness of the throat.
Local heat – Apply a heating pad to the throat region or wrap your neck with hot air dried warm cloth / towel. This will provide relief to the ailing throat.
Analgesics Antipyretics – Over the counter analgesics (NSAIDS) can be taken safely if the sufferer does not have any allergy to these medications. These medications give immediate pain relief and also bring down the malaise and fever.
- Cold drinks
- Oily and fried food items
- Spicy food
They cause harm to the infected throat by drying, irritating, dehydrating the already inflamed mucosa and should be avoided.
Take adequate rest for the body to heal better.
Rest your voice to prevent exerting the larynx and worsening hoarseness of the voice.
Seek medical attention if there is:
- Throat pain lasting more than a couple of days
- Very severe pain with chills, fever and body ache
- Pain in the laryngeal region and voice change
- Pain in the ears and blocking sensation in the ears
- Neck swelling
- Purulent cough
- Swollen tonsils
- Breathlessness with chest congestion and pain
*Data Courtesy: Dr Sangeet Poddar, Consultant ENT, MS *Image courtesy: © Thinkstock photos/ Getty Images