Sore throats are often caused by a viral infection or bacterial infection in the surrounding tissues. Streptococcal bacteria is a common cause of sore throats. Smoking, allergies, acid reflux, mouth breathing, dry air, cancer or polyps or throat abuse can also cause you to develop a sore throat. There are several remedies that can provide you with relief if you have a sore throat.
Sore Throat Remedies
- Drink Plenty of Water. Drink at least 8-10 eight ounce glasses of water while you are sick to keep your throat lubricated and to help rinse away the bacteria that is causing your illness.
- Quit Smoking. Cigarette smoke causes irritation to the lining of your throat.
- Have a Good Rest. Resting or getting more sleep will allow your body to dedicate more energy to fighting the infection in your throat.
- Clear the Nasal Passages. A dry throat or postnasal drip are the most common causes of a sore throat. If your nasal passages are clogged you will need to breathe through your mouth which will dry out the throat. Using a decongestant can help unblock the nasal passages so you can breathe more easily and avoid irritating your throat.
- Try a Steam Tent. Get a bowl of steaming hot water and lean over it with a towel over your head. You can also add a few drops of eucalyptus oil for a soothing steam. This can help cure your infection more quickly to get your throat back to normal.
- Keep Spraying. Analgesic sprays can help to provide temporary relief for sore throat pain. However, you may need to use these a lot to see relief because the effects are temporary.
- Gargle. Gargling can help ease your discomfort and kill off excess bacteria or the virus that is causing your symptoms. Gargling with standard mouthwash, warm saltwater, raspberry tea, sage tea or turmeric tea can help you see relief when you have a sore throat.
- Take some analgesic. Taking ibuprofen, aspirin or acetaminophen can help ease the pain of a sore throat. Do not give aspirin to children under 19 because this can cause Reye's syndrome. You should also check with your doctor about which medications are safe to take if you are pregnant.
- Have Some Hot Liquids. Sipping hot fluids such as warm lemonade, tea or coffee can sooth the swollen tissue inside your throat. Boiling marjoram leaves in a cup of water for 10 minutes can create a soothing tea that is particularly helpful.
- Have Some Cider Vinegar. A mixture of a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, a tablespoon of honey and eight ounces of hot water creates a tea that can help to ease a sore throat. Do not give any mixture that includes honey to children under two. You can also mix a half cup apple cider vinegar, a cup of water and a teaspoon of salt to create a gargle to help your sore throat.
- Try Horseradish Cocktail. Mix a tablespoon of horseradish with a teaspoon of ground clove, a teaspoon honey and a glass of water to create a classic Russian remedy for sore throats.
- Use Citrus. Sipping a spoon of lime juice and honey can help ease a sore throat. You can also sip on a mixture of a cup of water, a tablespoon of lemon and a tablespoon of honey.
- Have Some Garlic. Peel and slice a clove of garlic and place half the clove in each cheek, treating it like a cough drop. Don't bite the garlic, simply leave it in place and swallow. This will release allicin that can kill bacteria.
- Take Vitamin C. Taking a dose of vitamin C three times a day can help to boost the immune system so you can fight the infection in your throat more effectively. Slow down your dosage if you develop diarrhea.
- Keep a Humidifier. Using a humidifier can help prevent your throat from becoming too dry, which can increase your discomfort.
When to See a Doctor
In most cases you do not need to see a doctor about your sore throat with these sore throat remedies. It is often a side effect of nasal congestion or the common cold. However, if you have a fever over 101 degrees F, you are having difficulty breathing, difficulty swallowing, drool excessively, have severe fatigue, the glands in your neck are swollen, you have developed a white or yellow coating in the throat or your sore throat has lasted for more than 3 days with no improvement you should see a doctor.