Sore Throat Treatment Q&A
If you are having difficulty swallowing, a scratchy sensation in the throat, or a hoarse voice, you are suffering from a sore throat. Let our team of medical practitioners get you back to feeling your best. To consult with our professionals, contact us or visit us today to book an appointment. We have convenient locations in Brooklyn, East Harlem, Coney Island, Nostrand, and Metropolitan NYC.
Table of Contents:
How do I know if my sore throat is viral or bacterial?
When should I visit a doctor for a sore throat?
What are the symptoms of a sore throat?
What happens if you let a sore throat go untreated?
A sore or tender throat can be the unfortunate symptoms of both viral and bacterial infections. Uncomfortable, painful, and persistent, a sore throat can leave you feeling awful – especially if left untreated. For quality care that will get you back on the road to recovery quickly, our team at Express Health can help.
A sore throat can stem from either a viral or bacterial infection, though it can be difficult to identify which one you have without the guidance of a medical professional. However, there are a few key differences that may point you in the right direction.
A sore throat caused by a bacterial infection is known as strep throat. It is caused by the streptococcus bacteria and is extremely contagious, spreading through contaminated air or surfaces that are harboring the bacteria. This can be done when someone infected with the infection coughs or touches communal surfaces.
Symptoms of a bacterial sore throat include swollen tonsils, a runny nose, nausea, nausea/vomiting, a raspy voice, or no voice altogether. A strep infection also makes it very painful to swallow and is often accompanied by a fever of 101F or higher. In comparison, a viral infection is caused by inflammation of throat tissue due to contracting a virus, such as a cold. The most common symptoms are coughing, sneezing, swelling of the throat, and a runny nose.
While a viral sore throat will usually clear up on its own, a bacterial infection requires antibiotics to be treated. As the two types of sore throats can sometimes be hard to distinguish from each other, it’s always best to consult your doctor for an accurate diagnosis.
In most cases, a sore throat will heal on its own with time and at-home treatment. However, if you’re sore throat coincides with a fever, swollen tonsils, excessive pain, a rash around the neck, or difficulty breathing/swallowing, you should see your doctor as soon as possible. These are often the signs of a bacterial infection which can only be treated with prescribed antibiotics.
A sore throat may present differently depending on the patient. However, the most common symptoms of a sore throat are:
● Pain or scratchiness located in the throat
● Painful swallowing
● Difficulty swallowing
● Discomfort when talking
● Swollen and tender glands in your neck and/or jaw
● Swollen tonsils
● White patches on your tonsils
● Phlegm in the back of your throat
● A hoarse voice
Your sore throat may also cause, or be the cause of, other symptoms. These include fever, sneezing, coughing, runny nose, body aches, swollen glands, headache, nausea, vomiting, and upset stomach.
A viral sore throat will usually go away on its own with rest and at-home care. However, if you have a bacterial infection, you’ll need special antibiotics to treat it. If you don’t, the infection may become worse and spread to other parts of your body. The potential complications of leaving a bacterial sore throat untreated are:
● The formation of throat abscesses
● Infected lymph nodes
● Sinus infections
● Ear infections
● Rheumatic fever
● Kidney disorders, such as glomerulonephritis
● Skin infections
● Scarlet fever
● Toxic shock syndrome
● Worsening of neuropsychiatric conditions in children
It can be difficult to tell the difference between a viral and bacterial sore throat which also makes it hard to determine whether or not you need medical intervention.
Let the medical experts at Express Health help treat your sore throat so that you can get back to feeling your best. Contact us for an appointment or walk in at your earliest convenience. Our team of professionals is ready to get you the answers and treatment that you need. We serve patients from Brooklyn NYC, Queens NY, East Harlem NYC, Manhattan NY, Coney Island NYC, Midwood NY, Nostrand NYC, Ridgewood NY, Metropolitan NYC, Greenwich Village NY, and surrounding areas.
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