A sore throat is an infection of the throat. It is one of the most common conditions seen by an ENT specialist. It is a symptom, not a disease.
- The sudden change in weather from a bright, warm sunny day to a cold, chilly day
- Viral infections
- Pollens and molds
- Cat and dog dander
- House dust
- Dry heat during the cold winter months
- Mouth breathing
- Pollutants and chemicals in the air
- Straining your voice
- Secretions from the nose in association with a cold or allergy
- Regurgitation of stomach acids into the back of the throat
- Itchiness or tickling in the throat
- Red area in the throat
- Pain while swallowing
- Inflammation in the throat
- Difficulty in breathing
- Pus on tonsils
- Drink lots of liquids: The best ones are warm liquids such as hot tea or soup. Avoid caffeine and alcohol.
- Stop Smoking: Smoke irritates the throat prolonging the symptoms. Refrain from smoking if at all possible.
- Rest and sleep more during this time: Getting 8-10 hours of sleep each night gives the body a better opportunity to combat the viruses. Exercise should be withheld for the first 48-72 hours to allow the body to fight off the virus.
- Gargling with a solution of 1/2 teaspoon (or less) salt in a glass of warm water every 2-4 hours during the day, to help soothe the throat.
- Suck on lozenges to help ease the pain.
- Steam helps soothe a dry and/or raw throat.
- Taking paracetamol will help relieve pain and fever.
- Avoid sharing of towels and utensils with the infected person.
- Frequent hand washing helps.
- Eat small, frequent meals. Choosing simple, nutritious food ensures a well balanced diet with in essential vitamins and nutrients.
- As long as the room remains reasonably warm and free of drafts, a daily dose of fresh air can sometimes do wonders.
- Wash your hands frequently; this is the best defense. Most viral infections are picked up by hand-to-hand contact.
- Stay away from people who are suffering with cold or sore throat, especially when they sneeze or cough, since you end up inhaling the infected droplets from a cough or sneeze.
- Eat a well balanced diet and make sure one gets enough sleep to keep up the resistance.