(Last Updated on : 09/06/2017)
Sore Throat is the inflammation of the pharynx or back of the throat and is a common Ear, Nose and Throat Disorder
. It frequently occurs when a person has a cold
or an attack of influenza
. Sore Throat is also known as 'Pharyngitis'. Generally, a sore throat is considered a sign for other illnesses like scarlet fever, rheumatic fever, etc. The throat's inflammation may also involve the tonsils and adenoids. Though, most of the times it is harmless and cured on its own, Pharyngitis may cause serious problems as well. Pharyngitis can result in very large tonsils and may sometimes be accompanied by cough
Causes of Sore Throat
Pharyngitis or sore throat may be caused due to several reasons. In most cases it is caused by viral infections like a common cold or flu (influenza) or mononucleosis (mono). Other viral illnesses like measles
or croup may also cause sore throat. In rare cases, bacterial infections like strep throat, tonsillitis, diphtheria
, etc. may cause Pharyngitis. Both viruses and bacteria enter the body through ones mouth or nose. Though Pharyngitis caused due to viral infections, it is sometimes cured on its own. However, if it is caused due to bacterial infections, the patients require proper medical care.
Symptoms of Sore Throat
There are many signs and symptoms that indicate a sore throat. A person suffering from Pharyngitis may have scratchy throat and have difficulties in swallowing and breathing
. In case of acute sore throat, a person feels burning and dryness in the throat and these feelings are usually followed by chills, fever and some hoarseness
or Laryngitis. Sometimes, the lymph glands along the sides of the neck may become swollen and tender and the back of the throat may become very red and even covered with a greyish-white membrane.
Most of the times, the patient finds difficulty in swallowing, especially during the acute stage and there may also be postnasal discharge if the irritation has spread to nasal passages. In case of Pharyngitis caused due to tonsillitis or strep throat, the common symptoms include white patches or pus on throat or tonsils, inability to swallow, vomiting, skin rash, headache
, severe throat pain, swollen and red tonsils, high fever, etc.
Diagnosis of Sore Throat
The diagnosis of sore throat is done based on the symptoms or types of sore throat
. The physicians also suspect Pharyngitis if the lymph nodes in the neck are enlarged. However, in case of strep throat, a swab is taken from the back of the throat and two tests named rapid antigen testing and a bacterial culture are conducted.
Treatment of Sore Throat
Various alternative medicinal methods provide effective treatment of sore throat. The treatment can be done following the methods like Ayurveda
or nature care
, etc. Certain dietary restrictions and lifestyle changes are advised in Naturopathic treatment of sore throat.