How To Treat Sore Throat
Knowing how to treat a sore throat spares you pain and suffering. A sore throat is general term for experiencing pain and discomfort while swallowing or simply breathing. Sore throats are caused by a variety of different ailments, such as a cold, the flu, an infection or other illnesses. A sore throat can be treated at home unless serious signs develop, like intense pain or the inability to swallow liquids.
- Gargle with warm salt water. Add a teaspoon of salt to eight ounces of water and mix until the salt is dissolved. Gargle at least one time per hour for about thirty seconds. Gargle more often if post nasal drip is causing the throat pain.
- Have soup or tea. Hot beverages thin mucus and help soothe throat inflammation. Avoid liquids that may burn your throat due to a high acid content, like tomato soup or a citrus tea.
- Get a vaporizer. Vaporizers release steam, adding moisture to the air to help prevent a dry, irritated throat. Place a pan of hot water to add moisture to a dry room if you cannot obtain a vaporizer.
- Get throat lozenges or cough drops. Throat lozenges and cough drops ease the pain of a sore throat and may reduce some inflammation. Both types of drops prevent the throat from becoming dry and are available over-the-counter at retail stores and pharmacies.
- Use nasal spray or another decongestant if you are congested. Congestion leads to post nasal drip that may be irritating your throat. Decongestants are available in pill or nasal spray form over-the-counter. Read all directions carefully before using.
Try a pain reliever. A pain reliever such as ibuprofen or aspirin helps reduce pain from a sore throat. Take ibuprofen, which is known to reduce inflammation, if possible. Follow all dosage directions.
Visit your doctor as soon as possible if signs of a serious illness develop, like trouble breathing.