A sore throat is caused by an infection of the throat usually by a bacterial or viral agent. Bacterial sore throats are often caused by the strep bacteria and respond well to antibiotics. The common symptoms of a sore throat are discomfort, pain and difficulties in swallowing.
While medication and antibiotics should always be used as a last resort, there are some simple treatments and home remedies that you can follow to get relief from a sore throat.
Ways to Treat Severe Sore Throat
Take OTC Painkillers
OTC painkillers like ibuprofen and aspirin may be mildly effective in treating the pain associated with a sore throat. Take the painkiller only if the pain gets very severe and unbearable.
Certain throat lozenges like halls and strepsils are very effective in giving relief from a sore throat. You can suck on these lozenges every time you experience the sensation of soreness.
Hot tea like ginger tea can give a lot of relief from an achy and sore throat. Toss some ginger flakes in your regular tea and allow the tea to brew in the ginger for 5 minutes. The ginger tea will help to soothe the throat and give relief from an achy and sore throat.
Hot water gargles
Gargle your throat with hot water and salt as often as you can. This is one of the best remedies and treatments for a sore throat. Gargle at least 3-4 times a day for relief.
Sip on Herbal Tea
Make a tea at home and to it add ginger, cardamom, cloves, black pepper corns and honey. Let the tea brew in these spices. Sip on this tea throughout the day.
Warm Milk with Turmeric
A concoction of warm milk and turmeric helps to soothe the throat. Just add a pinch of turmeric to a cup of hot milk and sip on this milk throughout the day. This will help to relief from a very severe throat infection.
Eat Soft Food
Eat soft foods like porridges, gruels, soups and broths. This helps to give the throat a rest. Consuming hard and fibrous foods will only hurt and aggravate your throat.
Avoid spicy food and alcohol
Alcohol and excessively spicy food may only aggravate your throat and cause further problems. Stay away from spicy food. Stick to boiled and bland food. Avoid alcohol at all costs.
Stay away from smoke, pollution and irritants
Certain dust allergens, smoke and pollution may cause your throat to feel very irritated. Avoid going out of the house especially if you suspect that it is an allergy. Avoid passive and active smoking as the smoke can further aggravate an existing infection. Smoke can irritate the throat and lead to severe pain.
Stay in a Humidified Environment
Excessively dry climate can bring on frequent throat infections. The best thing to do is to stay indoors preferably in a humid and moist environment that does not cause your throat to dry out.
Sip on Water
Sipping on warm water throughout the day will bring you symptomatic relief. The warm water moistens the nasal and throat passages and reduces discomfort associated with a sore throat.
Let the Infection Run its Course
A minor case of sore throat should be allowed to run its course. In most cases, it will not last for more than 3-4 days. Most of the time the sore throat is often accompanied by flu like symptoms. This is a usual occurrence especially when there is a change in the weather. Allow the illness to run its course and you will end up faring much better for the rest of the season.
Enhance your Immunity
You must try to boost your immunity just when the weather is about to change. Do this by taking adequate supplements of B Vitamins and Vitamin C. Vitamin C is very effective against the common cold, flu and throat infections. Dosage of Vitamin C for about a month helps in most cases.
Exercise will keep many a disease and illnesses at bay. Exercise is very good for your entire ENT system as it helps in oxygenation and enhances blood circulation to most parts of the body.
Rest and Take it Easy
If your throat infection is pulling you down, take an off from work and take sufficient rest. Rest will allow your body to recover and will also allow you to avail the benefits of simple home remedies. Get sleep and stay distracted.
Turmeric Water Gargle
A gargle with turmeric water is said to be extremely beneficial for a sore throat. This is because turmeric has antiseptic properties that help to ward off disease causing parasites. Put a pinch of turmeric in warm water and gargle with this water 3-4 times in a day.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is very useful in treating a sore throat. Take a cup of water. To it, add a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and a tablespoon of honey. Drink this water twice everyday for relief from sore throat.
Pure lemon juice squeezed from fresh lemons help to ease a throat infection. Make sure you use water at room temperature, as it is easy on the throat. You can also add a teaspoon of honey for taste. Lime juice is loaded with vitamin C and also helps to hydrate the throat.
Suck on Ginger Candy
Ginger candy or normal hard candy can give relief by keeping your throat passages moist. In addition, they also aid in swallowing and you will not be struggling to swallow your food.
A good steam inhalation with warm water is not only effective for your nasal passages but also for your throat. Do steam inhalation twice a day for maximum benefit. It will give the much-needed relief from a sore throat.
Avoid Sick People
One way of minimizing the occurrence of a throat infection is to avoid sick people completely. Flu and colds are spread via air and through contact so stay away from sick people during the flu season. Wash your hands with water as soon as you come in from outside.
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