Can I Prevent Strep Throat
If someone in your house has strep throat, you might get it. But following these tips can help protect you:
- Make sure the person with strep throat covers his or her mouth when sneezing and coughing.
- Dont handle used tissues or other germy items.
- Wash your hands regularly, especially before eating.
- Wash dishes, drinking glasses, knives, forks, and spoons in hot, soapy water.
- Keep sores and cuts clean because strep can get in your skin and cause problems, too.
Strep throat is no fun, but after feeling sick for 2 or 3 days, most kids start getting back to normal. In other words, they feel less streppy and more peppy!
When Should I Get Tested For Strep Throat
If you have a sore throat thats accompanied by a fever and/or some of the other symptoms described above , its a good idea to see a doctor.
With strep throat, its better to be seen earlier rather than later, says Moore. The quicker you get treated, the quicker you can be sure you dont spread the infection to others. Also, if you get to the point where your pain is not well controlled and you have trouble drinking fluids, you run the risk of getting dehydrated and weak.
The Truth Of Using Antibiotics For Strep Throat
As we have cited previously that more and more people are shifting to another way to treat strep throat, instead of antibiotics. If it is true, why antibiotics are supposed to be the fastest method for strep throat to recover, it is causing doubts about its necessity. Then, a question has been raised Are antibiotics necessary?
Also Check: Honey As An Antibiotic For Dogs
Using Home Remedies For Strep Throat: A Daily Journal
10/6 Sunday afternoon felt something in throat. Still sang well at rehearsal.
10/7 Monday morning something became more prominent and I began the research into what I felt was inevitably the strep bacteria attacking my throat.
10/7 Monday early afternoon visit to doctor for regular checkup and asking about an unrelated pulled muscle. He checked my throat and said nothing. It didnt matter if he had, I would have just went through the motions of accepting an antibiotic prescription, but not taking it I had already made up my mind to do something different.
10/7 Monday afternoon found information on The Healthy Home Economist about beating strep with no meds. Followed up with a phone call to David Aaron Katz. Became convinced that I will muscle through it with home remedies. As per Davids suggestion, I started by sucking/chewing on cloves of garlic 5 of them before the day was out!
10/7 Monday evening attempted to sing. Did not go well, highs were very strained.
10/8 Tuesday morning throat uncomfortableness, but quick mirror check didnt seem to reveal anything overly red. Driving son to school is when I looked in rear view mirror and noticed two white spots. Strep confirmed.
10/8 Tuesday later morning started a cycle of garlic chewing with a mixture of raw honey & cayenne pepper every half hour . First two administers I experienced upset stomach, but became very tired and slept most afternoon.
Well its not back!
Does Strep Throat Require Antibiotic Treatment
The short answer is yes. Unlike ear infections, which can be bacterial or viral in nature, strep throat is always caused by bacteria , Moore clarifies. Therefore, best practice is to prescribe antibiotics to prevent future problems and stop the spread of the infection.
While there are times when strep could go away without antibiotics, the problem is that some of those cases could have negative outcomes, especially for very young or elderly patients, says Moore. Complications can include abscesses inside the throat or on the tonsils, rheumatic fever, and even post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis, which is a rare inflammation of the kidneys.
Don’t Miss: What Is The Best Antibiotic For Oral Infection
Causes Of Strep Throat
Strep throat is caused by group A Streptococcus bacteria. These bacteria are highly contagious.
Strep bacteria can be spread via:
- Doorknobs and other commonly touched surfaces
Are there risk factors that increase your chance of strep throat? You are more likely to contract a strep throat infection when:
- You are older than 2, but havent hit puberty
- It is winter or early spring
- You are in close contact with others
When Does A Doctor Recommend Taking Antibiotics For A Sore Throat
If you have a bad sore throat and your doctor has made a strep throat diagnosis, they may prescribe antibiotics such as penicillin or amoxicillin to help you get well fast. Taking antibiotics can decrease the duration and severity of your symptoms. It can also prevent the bacterial infection from spreading. Antibiotics are also prescribed to prevent serious but rare problems like rheumatic fever.
Recommended Reading: Best Antibiotic For Nasal Infection
How To Protect Others
- Everyone should wash hands often with soap or hand sanitizer. Good handwashing prevents the spread of infection.
- Cover the mouth when coughing or sneezing. Give your child a paper bag and have him put his used tissues in the bag. Moisture from the child’s nose and mouth is contagious.
- Do not share drinking cups or eating utensils.
- Throw away your child’s toothbrush and buy a new one as soon as the illness is over.
- Keep your child away from others for 24 hours after the medicine is started and until he has no fever.
- Tell the school nurse and your childs teacher that your child has strep throat. It is important for school personnel to know so that other parents can be told to watch for symptoms in their children.
- If anyone in the family gets a sore throat, he should be checked by a doctor to see if medical treatment is needed.
Natural Remedy For Strep Throat
- 3 Tablespoons of raw, organic honey
- 3 to 5 Slightly crushed cloves of organic garlic
- 1/8 Teaspoon of Cayenne powder
Mix these together and take one teaspoon of this mixture every hour. Simply swallow the garlic cloves whole, you dont need to chew them. Continue making this mixture and eating a teaspoon of it every hour until your sore throat is completely gone. Dont drink or eat anything for at least 20 minutes afterwards so these ingredients can do their work on your throat.
This mixture is very soothing and even those who dont care for garlic will find that, when mixed with honey, it tastes pretty good and works super-fast. Many people with strep throat lose their voices and this should restore your voice in a matter of hours! This mixture might seem too simple to fight something as strong as strep throat, but its absolutely 100 percent effective.
Be sure that the honey you are using is real honey, raw and organic, the way nature intended it. A great deal of the stuff you buy at the store isnt honey at all, but some type of corn syrup with a bit of coloring and perhaps a couple drops of pollen. Raw honey has about 5,000 enzymes, 27 minerals, 22 amino acids and lots of antibacterial properties that will help to kill that strep throat dead it its tracks. Find out more everything you wanted to know about raw honey.
Cayenne pepper will bring fresh blood to the area to promote healing. Its also high in vitamin C, which supports the immune system.
Read Also: How To Cure A Uti Naturally Without Antibiotics
Who Can Get It
Strep throat is more common among children aged 5 to 15, but can affect people of all ages. Its rare in children under 3 years of age. Adults who are parents of school-aged children or who are often in contact with children are more at risk for strep throat. Youre also at higher risk for strep throat if you have close contact with a person with strep throat as it’s highly contagious.
Personal Stories About Taking Antibiotics For Sore Throat
These stories are based on information gathered from health professionals and consumers. They may be helpful as you make important health decisions.
I was sick a lot as a kid, and I was always taking medicine. Maybe it helped at the time. But in the past few years, when I’ve gotten a bad sore throat or sinus infection, antibiotics haven’t worked. I’ve had to try two or three different ones each time. That gets expensive. The next time I get a sore throat, I’m going to try just staying home, resting, and taking care of myself instead of taking antibiotics.
My 8-year-old daughter got strep throat last month. I thought it was just a cold, and I kept her home from school for a few days. But she wasn’t getting better and she felt so miserable. I was also worried about ear infections. She gets a lot of those too. The doctor did a strep test and suggested she take antibiotics. Amy started feeling better a few days later. I think antibiotics were the right way to go this time.
My insurance doesn’t pay for all of my medicines, so I try to make sure I really need the ones I do take. The last time I had a bad cold, my throat got really sore. The pain made it hard for me to swallow. I called my doctor’s office and the nurse said I could come in if I felt I needed a prescription. I thought I’d wait and see instead. I took ibuprofen and drank a lot of tea and honey, and in a few days I felt better. I’m glad I didn’t spend the money on a doctor visit and medicine.
Don’t Miss: How Do Antibiotics Affect The Microbiome
How Can You Relieve A Sore Throat Without Antibiotics
Home treatment is often all you need to soothe a sore throat. Try these tips:
- Gargle often with warm salt water if you are age 8 or older. This helps to reduce throat swelling and pain. Mix 1 teaspoon of salt in 240 mL of warm water.
- Drink extra fluids to soothe your throat. Honey or lemon in weak tea may help. Don’t give honey to children younger than 1 year of age.
- Get plenty of rest.
- Take over-the-counter medicine such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen to relieve pain and reduce fever.
- Try throat lozenges that have a painkiller to numb your throat. Regular cough drops may also help. Do not give these to children younger than 4 years of age.
- Try a decongestant. It can make breathing easier and relieve a runny nose and post-nasal drip, which can make your throat hurt. You can take it as a pill or as a nasal spray. Before you use this medicine, check the label. It may not be safe for young children or for people with certain health problems.
Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label.
Learn When You Should Get Tested Best Practices For Treatment How To Contain The Contagion And Where To Go For Affordable Care
Oh, the wonders of winter. Snowball fights, skiing, hot cocoa, and strep throat?
Yes, the season of fun-filled pastimes and sparkling snow can also be marked by sickness. And this winter, our providers at Associates in Family Medicine are seeing higher-than-usual cases of strep throat.
While this bacterial bane on the winter season is familiar to most of us, our team of providers has noticed a number of misconceptions around strep throat. We talked to AFM physician and urgent care director Dr. Shelley Moore to get clarity on common strep throat symptoms, treatment options, spread, and more.
Read Also: Antibiotics Used To Treat Sibo
Rinse Your Throat With Apple Cider Vinegar
Unfiltered apple cider vinegar is replete with good bacteria or the mother, which can help eliminate the infection-causing strep bacteria in your throat. The use of ACV as a diluted solution to gargle is believed to be effective due to its antibacterial properties.
How to use:
Note: It is best to consult your doctor before trying this ACV solution for gargling due to its acidic nature.
Garlic On How To Treat Bacterial Infection
You can lay your belief in garlic because it is also another natural home remedy with antibacterial properties. Garlic is available in every kitchen and it is the excellent home remedy to treat different fungal and bacterial infections. An effective way on how to treat bacterial infection is eating 4-5 cloves of garlic per day. You can chew and swallow it. Another way is taking garlic in the form of capsules. However, this way may be less effective than chewing garlic freshly. If you cannot stay with fresh garlic cloves, you can think of its capsules but we still recommend you eating it raw. Besides, garlic tea is another solution that is also considered as the herbal remedy on how to treat bacterial infection. You should add some cloves in the boiling water and steep for a few minutes before sipping the garlic tea. It is easy to have a cup of garlic tea so that you are supposed to spend a little effort and time on it. Garlic tea will be a useful treatment.
To know other benefits of garlic, you can view at Benefits Of Garlic
Don’t Miss: How Often To Take Antibiotics For Tooth Infection
How To Test For Strep Throat At Home
The only way to know definitively if you have strep throat is through a rapid strep test administered by a healthcare provider or at your nearest GoHealth Urgent Care. And while home strep tests are available, they arent 100 percent accurate and can produce false-negative results.
You can examine your throat for signs of infection by looking in the mirror and saying, Ahhh. If you see white dots or patches in the back of your throat, or your tonsils are red and swollen, you may have strep throat and should see your doctor or go to your local GoHealth Urgent Care.
Related Resources For Strep Throat
* Prescription savings vary by prescription and by pharmacy, and may reach up to 80% off cash price.
Pharmacy names, logos, brands, and other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
This article is not medical advice. It is intended for general informational purposes and is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your physician or dial 911.
Read Also: Easy Way To Get Antibiotics
Can An Online Doctor Treat Me For Strep Throat
Yes! HealthTap is here to help.
Our online doctors can meet you via video consultation and evaluate you for strep throat, order tests*, offer medical advice, and write prescriptions that are sent electronically to your nearest pharmacy. HealthTap members can compare costs at the nearest five pharmacies and save up to 75% off the cost of their prescriptions. Additionally, if you schedule an appointment with a primary care physician in our Virtual Primary Care clinic, you can text with your doctor for free after your appointment to discuss any questions or clarifications you may have.
*You may need to travel to an in-person clinic if testing for strep is needed.
Read Also: Does Any Antibiotic Cure Chlamydia
Is Strep Throat Overmedicated
Sounds like the idea of not administering antibiotics for strep throat may not be as crazy as it first sounds. Are doctors overmedicating strep throat just like they overmedicate ear infections, colds and sinus/respiratory infections?
A round of antibiotics has the potential to cause permanent damage to the gut flora. This, in turn, has a lifelong impact on overall immunity to both chronic and acute illness. Skipping those antibiotic pills altogether may prove in the long run to be the smartest approach of all.
You May Like: One Dose Of Antibiotics For Chlamydia
How Is Strep Throat Diagnosed
If you have a sore throat accompanied by fever for more than two days, you should visit a doctor. At your doctors visit, you may be asked questions such as:
- How long have you had your symptoms?
- Have you recently been exposed to strep throat?
- Does anything relieve your symptoms?
- Do you have any other medical conditions?
During the appointment, your doctor will likely examine you by taking your temperature, feeling your neck for swollen lymph nodes, and visually inspecting your throat. Based on this examination, your doctor may run one of two tests to check for sore throat:
- A rapid antigen test or rapid strep test may be administered if strep throat is suspected. During this test, your doctor will swab the back of your throat for a sample. The antigen test can detect strep bacteria within a few minutes, but it is an imperfect test. If the test comes back negative, but your doctor suspects strep, he or she may perform a throat culture.
- Throat cultures are done by taking a swab of the back of the throat and then sending it for culture in a laboratory. This test can take up to two days, whereas the rapid antigen test only takes minutes.
Based on the results of the strep test your doctor may write you a prescription for antibiotics. During this appointment, you should ask any questions you may have, including:
Treating A Sore Throat
A sore throat generally lasts two to three days and gets better within a week. There are a few things you can try that may soothe a sore throat and quicken your recovery:
Gargle with warm salty water Drink plenty of water but avoid hot drinks Eat cool or soft foods Avoid smoking or smoky areas Take rest Suck ice cubes or hard sweets
Ask your pharmacist which over-the-counter medicines could help relieve the pain or discomfort of your sore throat.
Recommended Reading: List Of Iv Antibiotics For Pneumonia