Sore Throat in Tuscaloosa
Sore throats are a common occurrence and can be caused by viruses or bacteria. Sinus infections and allergies can also contribute to a sore throat. If you are experiencing a sore throat and symptoms last for more than a week, it may be time to see an ENT doctor. At Tuscaloosa ENT, one of our specialists can properly diagnose your cause of a sore throat, and suggest possible treatment options.
Causes and Symptoms of a Sore Throat
Most sore throats are caused by viruses or bacteria. They can also be associated with other symptoms like fever and swollen glands. The main types of sore throat are caused by:
Viral infections like the flu, measles, chicken pox, colds, croup, and whooping cough can cause a sore throat. The viral infection, infectious mononucleosis, or “mono” is a more serious virus that can cause a sore throat. Other symptoms include swollen glands in the neck, armpits, and groin.
Bacteria is the main cause of strep throat, which can cause severe pain of the throat. A particular strain of streptococcus bacteria can cause fever, white patches on the throat, and swollen glands in the neck. Although strep throat is most common in children, it can affect people of all ages. It is spread through sharing foods or drinks, or through air born droplets such as coughing or sneezing. Strep throat is very contagious, with a two-five day infectious period. The most common cure is antibiotics.
Both bacteria and viruses can cause the tonsils to become inflamed, also called tonsillitis. Tonsillitis caused the back of the throat to become red and swollen, and may lead to complications in swallowing and breathing. Antibiotics can commonly treat this condition, but it can also resolve on its own. If you experience recurring tonsillitis, it may be recommended that the tonsils be removed surgically to prevent further complications.
Sore Throat Treatment
In most cases, the cause of your sore throat will need to run its course, especially if it is a result of a cold virus. However, that doesn’t mean you have to suffer. There are many home remedies that you can try that may provide you some relief while dealing with a cold or throat related condition.
- Stay hydrated. It is common for a sore throat to feel exceptionally dry so drinking lots of fluids are very important.
- Using a humidifier at night while you sleep or in a room that you spend a lot of time in during the day may increase your comfort by keeping the air moist.
- Steam and hot showers can have the same soothing effect as a humidifier if you do not have access to a humidifier.
- Try throat lozenges or tea with honey. The ingredients in the lozenges and the honey may coat your throat and make it feel less dry.
If you are experiencing an uncomfortable sore throat, please contact our Tuscaloosa office today. One of our ENT physicians can correctly diagnose you with the cause of your sore throat and provide treatment options to help you feel your best again.