Remedies for a Sore Throat

By: Kelly Warf, Au.D.
David Tojo, M.D.

Sore throats rarely present on their own; they are typically a symptom of a viral infection (e.g., the flu or cold). Other causes of sore throats include allergies, dry weather, muscle/voice strain, gastroesophageal reflex disease, or cancer. The following remedies for sore throats can help mitigate your throat discomfort, however, it will not treat the illness.

Home remedies for a sore throat:

  1. Salt water gargle- ½ tsp table salt to 8 oz warm water. Gargle and spit out. Repeat every 3 hours.
  2. Throat lozenges
  3. Medication- acetaminophren or ibuprofen are common OTC medications that can reduce a sore throat or other symptoms. Lidocaine spray may be used to numb the throat.
  4. Dietary adjustment- some foods might irritate the throat, such as hard or crunchy foods. Stick to foods that soothe your throat, such as tea, soup, or popsicles.
  5. Drink plenty of water- this can help keep your throat moist. Adding a lemon wedge or honey to water or tea may also aid in soothing throat discomfort.
  6. Humidifier- dry weather can intensify a sore throat. Create moisture with a cool-air humidifier or taking a warm shower or bath.
  7. Get plenty of rest- if you are sick, don’t overlook the basic need that your body needs time to recover from an illness.

Sometimes a sore throat accompanied with other symptoms means it’s time to call your ENT doctor. If you experience any of the following with a sore throat, then call our office to schedule your appointment.

  • White patches in the back of the throat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Rash
  • Swelling or lump of the head or neck
  • Blood in your phlegm or saliva
  • Sore throat that occurs frequently or lasts longer than a week
  • Hoarseness lasting more than 2-3 weeks

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms described above, please schedule an appointment with us today so we can determine the underlying cause and create a treatment plan. Schedule your appointment at the Ear, Nose, and Throat Center today. Call 847-685-1000

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