What Are The Treatments For Strep Throat
Strep throat, caused by bacteria, is one type of sore throat that can be treated. It isn’t handled in the same way as sore throats caused by colds and other viruses, so your doctor will likely do whatâs called a ârapid strep testâ to be sure it’s strep
If the test is positive , theyâll probably recommend:
- Antibiotics to kill the bacteria thatâs causing it
- Rest to help you get better faster
- Over-the-counter medicines and home remedies to ease symptoms
You Have A Sore Throat Without Other Symptoms
A sore throat can be one of the symptoms of viral infections. However, you will also have many other symptoms, including a runny nose, runny eyes and just that feeling of being under the weather. What you actually need to look out for is a sore throat with no other symptoms at all. This is a sign of strep throat and requires antibiotics to treat.
Your doctor will want to know about all symptoms you or your child has. Theyll assess the chances of various dangerous bacterial infections.
The good thing about strep throat is there are tests that can be carried out in the doctors office. This is known as a rapid antigen test or a culture test. This is often one of the only ways to definitely determine if the condition requires antibiotics or not.
When it comes to children, the recommendation is the test a culture first. The majority of infections and sore throats are linked to a viral infection or an irritant. There are very few bacterial infections that need treating, but people are a little too quick to jump to antibiotics. The medication isnt going to make the condition any better and cause more harm than good.
While a sore throat isnt an instant identification of a bacterial infection, there are other signs that you need antibiotics. Your sore throat may also be accompanied with white spots at the back of the throat. A few small spots can appear when your body is fighting against a viral infection and they will usually disappear within a couple of days.
What Is The Best Treatment For A Sore Throat
- Doing nothing may be a sensible option- many throat infections are mild and get better by themselves.
- Plenty of fluids: it is tempting not to drink very much if its feeling painful to swallow. But you may become dehydrated, particularly if you also have a hightemperature . Dehydration can make headaches and tiredness much worse. So its important to maintain good fluid intake.
- Painkillers and anti-inflammatories can help ease symptoms.
- Various throat sprays and lozenges can be bought in pharmacies or supermarkets, and may give some relief also
Do You Have A Viral Sore Throat Or Strep Throat
While youre suffering through the pain of a sore throat, it may seem trivial to consider the source of your discomfort. After all, youre concentrating on getting sips of water down, not the root cause of this illness.
But the type of sore throat you have impacts the type of treatment used to cure it. Read on to learn the difference between viral sore throat and strep throat and why it matters.
Bacterial And Viral Sore Throats
A sore throat is something were all familiar with, but its not easy to tell if its because of a virus or bacteria. And this can confuse you when youre trying to treat it.
A bacterial sore throat is called strep throat, caused by the streptococcus bacteria. It is contagious, spreading either through the air via droplets like when someone coughs or on surfaces that someone with the infection has touched.
On the other hand, a viral sore throat is caused by inflammation resulting from a virus, such as the common cold. It has entirely different symptoms and progression than a bacterial sore throat. It is still contagious, but it doesnt respond to antibiotics the way a bacterial infection does.
Almost everyone will experience a sore throat at some point, but certain lifestyle factors may increase your risk. Some of these are:
- Exposure to airborne irritants, especially air pollution or cigarette smoke
- Not washing your hands frequently or thoroughly enough
- Being in close contact with people who have colds or other upper respiratory infections
Its important to have your sore throat symptoms reviewed by a doctor because an untreated infection can be dangerous. Many complications could arise, such as:
- Abscesses near the tonsils
You May Like: Yeast Infection Uncircumcised Male Treatment
You May Like: My Dog Ate My Other Dogs Antibiotic
Consequences Of Untreated Strep Throat
Strep throat is self-limiting and can resolve itself within a week if left untreated by antibiotics. But this can result in serious complications. And you could spread the strep infection to others children are especially vulnerable.
What can happen if strep throat is left untreated? There are some serious complications of untreated strep infection. These complications are uncommon but are important for you to know when weighing the risks.
- Streptococcal toxic shock syndrome¹³
PANDAS may develop in children with untreated strep throat. PANDAS results in sudden-onset OCD, aggressive behaviors, ADHD-like symptoms, Tourette-like symptoms, and possibly more.
Untreated PANDAS may follow children into adulthood.
If you suspect that your child might have PANDAS, you can book an appointment by clicking here . We are also happy to speak with you at , Monday-Thursday, from 8AM 5PM Eastern time.
We are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of children with PANS and PANDAS even helping our own daughter to overcome PANDAS a few years ago. Our office provides the best care in Indiana for PANS and PANDAS. We also see patients from across the country. The first visit must be in the office but often follow-ups may be done remotely. If you are unable to travel, you may be able to find a physician near you at the PANDAS Physician Network .
Best Sore Throat Remedies To Make You Feel Better Fast According To Doctors
Some home remedies only mask painbut these solutions can help you get rid of your sore throat completely.
Sore throat symptoms can be rough. Your saliva goes down like sandpaper, every cough makes you wince, and the only thing you can think about is making that lump in the back of your throat go away.
But to ease the pain, you need to understand whats causing your sore throat in the first place: dry air, smoking, acid reflux, viral infections like the flu or common cold, and bacterial infections like strep can all lead to a sore throat.
In general, a viral infection usually comes with other symptoms, like muscle aches and fatigue, along with your sore throat, says Chester Griffiths MD, an otolaryngologist at Providence Saint Johns Health Center in Santa Monica, Calif. With a bacterial infection, on the other hand, the pain is usually more focused on your throat and the soreness tends to be pretty severe, Dr. Griffiths says. You may also have intense pain when you swallow, along with a high fever.
Exposure to smoke, breathing in dry air, and having acid reflux tends to feel very different from an infection, says Jason Abramowitz, MD, an ear, nose, and throat specialist at ENT and Allergy Associates. Usually patients do not feel as sick overall the pain is also usually not as severe, he says.
Also Check: Antibiotic Ointment For Diaper Rash
How Do I Know If I Have Strep Throat
In children, about 25% of sore throats are caused by strep. Adults have fewer strep infections, with strep causing about 10% of sore throats in adults. The only way to know for sure is to get tested. Testing is pretty fast and easy: a doctor or nurse will take a swab of your throat and test for group A Strep.
That said, there are some telltale symptoms of strep that may lead you to see a doctor:
Red and swollen tonsils, sometimes with white spots
Small red dots on the roof of your mouth
Swollen lymph nodes in your neck
Interestingly, strep often does not include symptoms like cough, runny nose, trouble speaking, or pink eye.
Some people donât experience any symptoms at all, but can still spread strep throat by coming into contact with others and/or spreading respiratory droplets.
Symptoms Of A Sore Throat
The classic symptom of a sore throat is pain at the back of the throat, which may be accompanied by various other symptoms depending on the underlying cause. You may experience:
- Respiratory problems
- Inflammation of the neck glands
- Problems in opening the mouth
The inflammatory discomfort associated with pharyngitis can be felt in the following areas:
- Roof of the mouth or soft palate
You May Like: How To Restore Healthy Gut Flora After Antibiotics
Recommended Reading: Can You Get Antibiotics Without Seeing A Doctor
What Is The Difference Between Strep Throat And Tonsillitis
The symptoms of strep throat and tonsillitis are same- sore throat, headache, fever and tiredness. Hence, people sometimes find it difficult to identify the two conditions.
Primarily, the difference between the two lies in the fact that tonsillitis is the inflammation of the tonsils while strep throat is a bacterial infection in the throat. This can further spread to the tonsils, and ears.
Sore Throat Vs Strep Throat Five Things To Know
Signs and symptoms of a sore throat can just as easily be the beginnings of something more serious: strep throat caused by strep bacteria or the inflammation of your voice box caused by viral infection or a bacterial infection. Lets review the differences and when you need to take action and seek medical care.
Question: Sore throat? Swollen larynx? Losing your voice?
Losing your voice is usually a sign of laryngitis, which is most often caused by a virus and not that serious. However, it can be a nuisance, and if the condition lasts longer than one week, or is accompanied by fever, difficulty swallowing or breathing, then visit your doctor or your local urgent care to determine the cause and begin treatment.
Question: What are some of the causes of a sore throat?
A sore throat can be caused by allergens like pollen, dust and food, or sometimes bacterial infections. The most common culprits, however, are flu and viral infections, which dont respond to antibiotics.
Question: When is a sore throat leading to something more serious?
Signs and symptoms of a sore throat can just as easily be the beginnings of something more serious, like strep. Some of the signs include swollen, scratchy throat and tonsils, moderate fever, headache, swollen glands , and mild rash.
Question: What home remedies can help a sore throat?
Question: What are some symptoms of strep throat?
Question: Why does strep throat warrant a visit to your doctor or urgent care?
Recommended Reading: What Antibiotics Help With Ear Infections
How To Protect Others
- Keep your child away from others for 12 hours after you start giving the antibiotics.
- Good hand washing is VERY important! Clean your hands and your childs hands often with soap and water. Wash for 15 to 20 seconds, or the time it takes to sing the Happy Birthday song. If soap and water are not available, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol may be used. Rub hands until dry Have your child cover their mouth when coughing or sneezing. Throw the tissues away right away.
- Do not share drinking cups or eating utensils.
- If anyone in the family gets a sore throat, they should be checked by their doctor or health care provider to see if they have strep.
- Tell your childs school nurse and teacher if they have strep throat. The school needs to know so they can tell other parents to watch for symptoms in their children.
- Your child should stay home from school or childcare until they have taken antibiotic medicine for 12 hours and have no fever.
How Is Strep Throat Treated
Strep throat is treated using antibiotics. An antibiotic is a type of medicine that kills the bacteria that cause the infection.
Antibiotics are often taken as pills or given as a shot. Penicillin and amoxicillin are common antibiotics used to treat strep throat. Other antibiotics are ordered for people who are allergic to penicillin.
Your healthcare provider may give your child a shot or prescribe an antibiotic in either pill or liquid form. The pills or liquid are usually taken for 10 days. Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions. Your child should take all of the medication, even if he or she feels better. The bacteria can still be alive even if your child feels okay.
Read Also: Is It Safe To Take Old Antibiotics
What Is A Sore Throat
Sore throats can be painful and annoying. But most of the time they go away on their own. It may take a few days or up to a week, depending on the cause.
Most sore throats are caused by a virus, such as a cold. A bacterial infection can also cause a sore throat.
If you have a sudden, severe sore throat without coughing, sneezing, or other cold symptoms, you could have strep throat. Strep throat is a bacterial infection of the throat and tonsils. About 1 out of 10 sore throats in adults is caused by strep throat. This means that 9 out of 10 sore throats aren’t strep.
How The Intervention Might Work
Antibiotics target bacteria which are potentially responsible for sore throat symptoms and possible subsequent suppurative and nonsuppurative sequelae. Successful eradication of bacteria may promote faster healing and prevention of secondary complications. However, not all sore throat cases are of bacteriologic origin and bacteria may resist antibiotic treatment which could limit the overall effectiveness of the intervention.
Also Check: Fighting A Uti Without Antibiotics
How Soon Will They Start Working
Antibiotics start working right away and you should be feeling better within one to two days. The sore throat will feel better right away if you gargle with salt water , or if you use throat lozenges
If itâs been longer than two to three days and youâre still feeling under the weather, or if you are feeling worse, talk to your doctor to see if something else is going on.
When You Shouldnt Take Antibiotics
If you have a sore throat that is not caused by a strep infection, antibiotics are not right for you. Antibiotics should be reserved for a diagnosed bacterial infection, such as strep throat.
Can strep throat run its course without antibiotics? Reportedly, strep throat can go away without antibiotics, but that does not mean it is not dangerous.
Not only can you infect others, but complications may arise from untreated strep.
In order to relieve strep throat symptoms while you treat the underlying cause, you can ease throat pain linked to strep with:
- Lozenges and nasal sprays
- Gargling salt water
- Switching out the familys toothbrushes for new clean ones
- Plenty of rest and hydration
Recommended Reading: How Long Does It Take To Cure Uti With Antibiotics
Tonsillitis: Do Antibiotics Make Sore Throats Go Away Quicker
Antibiotics can shorten the length of throat infections by between half a day and one day on average. But they can have side effects, and using too much increases the risk of becoming resistant to them.
A lot of people go to the doctor because of a sore throat particularly in the cold season. Sore throats are often caused by a common cold, and sometimes by a throat infection or a tonsil infection . People may then wonder whether or not to take . But antibiotics won’t help in most cases: Sore throats that are part of a common cold are usually caused by viruses, and antibiotics don’t fight viruses. Antibiotics only help in people who have a bacterial infection, such as bacterial tonsillitis. Most sore throats go away on their own within a week anyway, without any special treatment.
Effectiveness Of Treatment With Antibiotics
Because are often used for sore throats even though it isn’t clear whether are really to blame, it would be interesting to known how effective this medication is. Researchers at the analyzed a total of 27 studies including more than 12,800 people. In these studies one group of people took antibiotics and another group took a placebo . Most of the study participants had signs of a bacterial infection. The following results do not apply to people who have milder symptoms that are probably caused by a viral infection.
The studies showed that taking can speed up recovery somewhat:
- About 80 out of 100 people who didn’t take still had a sore throat after three days.
- About 55 out of 100 people who took still had a sore throat after three days.
The results after one week:
- About 40 out of 100 people who didn’t use still had a sore throat.
- About 20 out of 100 people who used still had a sore throat.
In some of the participants a swab test detected certain that can cause bacterial tonsillitis. The were a bit more effective in that group of people.
The studies also showed that can prevent complications such as middle ear infections. People who take antibiotics are also less likely to develop a different complication called quinsy . This is a build-up of pus beside a tonsil. But these and other complications are rare in people who are otherwise healthy, even if they don’t take antibiotics. They occur in less than 1 to 10 out of 1,000 people who go to a doctor because of their symptoms.
Recommended Reading: Home Remedy Antibiotics For Toothache