What is Sore Throat?
Sore Throat is perhaps one of the most common ailments associated with upper respiratory tract infections. It could be caused by viral, bacterial, fungal infections or allergies. It is a swelling on the back of the throat or the pharynx and hence known as Pharyngitis as well. Tonsils and the soft palate may also be involved. It is characterized by scratchiness and pain that causes difficulty in swallowing.
Sore Throat is usually considered as a harmless disease unless accompanied by serious complications. A Sore Throat lasting for a period of two weeks or more should not be taken lightly. Apart from common viral infections like Common Cold, Sore Throat can be caused by other conditions too. The best way to decipher the cause is to analyze the additional symptoms.
The disease can also be referred to as Tonsillitis, Laryngitis or Epiglottitis depending on the site of the inflammation. For the treatment of Sore Throat, several conventional medicines are available in the market.
But, with an increase in the awareness about the side effects of most of the chemical based medicines, more and more people are opting for natural remedies. Gargling, drinking warm liquids, herbal teas etc are some of the most popular and equally effective natural home remedies for Sore Throat.
Causes and Symptoms of Sore Throat
The viruses causing Common Cold, Flu or Mononucleosis are some of the most common viruses that cause Sore Throat as well. In addition to this, repeated coughing may also cause soreness in the throat. Plus, when the mucus from the nose drips down the back of the throat it leads to post nasal drip which in turn increases the risk of developing Sore Throat. Certain viral infections may also result in blisters in the throat.
Moreover, the throat tends to become dry and sore temporarily when an individual breathes through the mouth. Besides, allergies such as Allergic Rhintitis have also been associated with this condition. Coming to the more serious factors, Sore Throat caused by bacterial infections is very troublesome and relevant steps should be taken as soon as possible to get rid of the problem.
The Streptococcus bacterium causes a condition called Strep Throat which leads to Sore Throat and other serious problems like Rheumatic Fever. Bacterial infection caused by Fusobacterium necrophorum named bacterium is associated with a life-threatening complication called Lemierre syndrome which begins with symptoms of Sore Throat.
Besides, chemotherapy and liberal use of antibiotics tends render the immune system weak thereby encouraging the growth of infections in the body. Apart from this, Tonsillectomy, adenoidectomy Endotracheal intubation and choking are some other factors causing this ailment.
The most common symptoms of Sore Throat are dryness, inflammation, irritation, pain and tightness in the throat and the surrounding area. It has been observed that in most of the cases, the symptoms of Sore Throat become worse in the morning and tend to subside or reduce on their own as the day progresses. While breathing, talking or swallowing something, the pain and burning sensation tends to increase and cause a great deal of discomfort.
Natural Home Remedies for Sore Throat
• Gargling with warm salt water (four teaspoons of salt in one liter water) for about 15 minutes is one of the simplest and oldest home remedies for Sore throat treatment.
• Take one teaspoon of juice extracted from the bark of mango tree, mix it in a glass of warm water and gargle with this solution to cure Sore Throat naturally.
• An infusion prepared from the bark of tamarind and powdered tamarind leaves (dry) is also beneficial in this regard.
• Boil a cup of water mixed with one teaspoon of dried red sage for about ten minutes and then strain it. Use it as a tea or use it as a gargle by adding vinegar to it. This home remedy works best when the gargling is done around four times a day. A gargle prepared from cayenne pepper also helps in curing Sore Throat.
• Take half a cup of warm water and add one teaspoon of syrup of figs in it. Gargling and then drinking this solution is highly beneficial in the treatment of Sore Throat.
• Boil two cups of water and add approximately five tablespoons of fresh or dried calendula flowers in it. Cover and steep the mixture for around 15 minutes and then strain it. Gargle with this solution to ease sore Throat related pain.
• Put some basil leaves in water and boil. Gargle with this water to cure the disease with great ease. Plus, this therapeutic solution can also be consumed internally to heal the problem. Plain tea leaves can also be used in the same way.
• Aloe vera juice can also be used for gargling. Follow this natural remedy two times a day on a regular basis for encouraging results.
• Boil some fenugreek seeds in water on a low flame for about thirty minutes. Then, cool and strain the mixture and gargle with it to relieve the pain and discomfort. Similarly, decoctions prepared from henna leaves, butea leaves, bay berry bark, bishop’s weed, and liquorice serve as excellent home remedies for Sore Throat.
Other home remedies:
• Regularly drinking warm water mixed with lemon juice honey is one of the easiest possible home remedies for Sore Throat.
• Another remdy with lemon is to put some salt and black pepper on a piece of lemon, press with the help of a knife (to ensure deeper penetration of salt and pepper) and finally heat the lemon piece to make it warm. Now, squeeze the lemon and lick the juice. Follow this procedure about two or three times a day to reduce Sore Throat.
• While dealing with Sore Throat caused by Cough and Cold, ginger tea and a mixture of ginger juice and honey are effective home remedies.
• Simply chewing some garlic cloves is regarded as one of the easiest possible home remedies for Sore Throat.
• Drinking three cups of marshmallow root tea is another valuable home remedy for sore Throat treatment. For this, take a cup of boiling water, add a tablespoon of dried root of this herb and steep it for about 10 minutes. Similarly, honeysuckle tea can also be prepared and consumed up to four times a day to provide relief. In case, of honeysuckle, use the flowers of the plant instead of leaves.
• Take a glass of water and add cinnamon powder, honey and a pinch of pepper powder in it. Taking this solution is one of the best natural home remedies for Sore Throat.
• Prepare a mixture from two tablespoons of sesame oil and one tablespoon of honey and have one teaspoon of this combination three times on a daily basis.
• Take one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, one teaspoon of honey, a pinch of cayenne pepper and juice extracted from a quarter piece of lemon. Mix these ingredients in a cup of water and drink about four cups of this mixture in a day as an effective home treatment for Sore Throat.
• Another remedy with cayenne makes use of one tablespoon of honey, four garlic cloves and one-eighth teaspoon of cayenne. Mix the ingredients properly, take a teaspoon of this mixture and chew it properly to reduce the discomfort.
• Applying crushed betel leaves on the throat as a natural treatment for Sore Throat.
• Add one teaspoon of cumin seeds and some garlic cloves in some boiling water and cook the mixture for a few minutes. Cool the mixture and then sip it slowly as a natural cure for this troublesome ailment.
• Soak a piece of onion in some honey. Cover and leave it for about an hour or so. Take one teaspoon of this honey at regular intervals throughout the day as an effective solution for Sore Throat.
Diet for Sore Throat
When dealing with Sore Throat, the affected individual should make sure to drink plenty of water, vegetable soups and herbal teas at regular intervals throughout the day to wash away the infection. Along with this, it is essential to adopt a healthy diet with special emphasis on green leafy vegetables, whole grains and fruits.
Plus, include ginger, garlic, black pepper and other such spices in the diet. Simply sucking a hard candy (preferably sugar free) can prove beneficial in dealing with the symptom of dryness in the throat by keeping it moist.
Apart from these measures, following the restrictive measures can also aid in the process of healing by not aggravating the problem. So, restrict the consumption of cold and sour foods like cucumber, papaya, banana, watermelon, curd and other such items. Exclude oily and greasy foods from the diet until the disease goes away. In addition, avoid exposure to cold water and cold climate as it may worsen the situation.