Sore throat or throat infection, as it is commonly known, is a condition associated with pain, itchiness, and irritation of the throat. When you have a sore throat, you may experience difficulty in swallowing food and liquids, and the pain and irritation is usually worse as you try to swallow. You may also experience pain around the ears and in the tubes connecting the throat and the ears.
A sore throat can be a symptom of a variety of conditions like a bacterial, viral, or a fungal infection or allergies, pollution, acid reflux or rhinitis (common cold). A sore throat associated with high fever, severe pain, and swelling of lymph nodes in the neck or tonsils is likely a bacterial infection and may need a course of antibiotic. Be sure to consult your doctor in the presence of these signs or symptoms. However, the vast majority of cases of a sore throat are of viral or allergic in nature and are self-limiting in nature requiring no medical intervention. There is countless, easy home and natural remedies to soothe the soreness and provide some relief from the other symptoms.
Some of the popular home remedies are:
Honey supposedly has antibacterial properties and acts as a hypertonic osmotic fluid drawing water out of the inflamed tissues. It can be taken as it is or mixed in tea to soothe the pain.
Boil a cup of water, add a tea bag, let it become warm, add 1 tablespoon of honey and drink it. Please remember, honey should not be given to children under the age of 1.
Lemon and Honey:
Lemon is another miracle fruit which is easily available throughout the year. It helps to clear the throat. Take equal quantities of honey and lemon juice in small quantities as many times as possible. Or if you prefer, make tea with it and drink it at least three times a day.
Garlic and Apple Cider Vinegar:
Garlic is an effective and fast acting natural remedy for a sore throat. It can be taken along with Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) and honey in warm water. Boil 2-3 garlic pods in water, let it become warm and add ACV and honey.
This is one the oldest remedies for a sore throat. Ginger is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties and opens up your sinuses and helps to clear your nose and throat. Take a fresh piece of ginger, wash it properly and put it on the cheek and suck its juice slowly. Alternately, crush the ginger and mix it with honey and eat it.
Take a pinch or two of pepper powder, mix it with honey and tea and drink at least thrice a day.
Fenugreek is believed to have antibacterial and anti-fungal properties, so it fights against infections. It also relief from pain. Fenugreek may be a bit bitter, but its benefits are sweet. Add few fenugreek seeds to a cup of water and boil and drink it 3-4 times per day.
It contains antioxidants and astringents which will boost your immune system and fight infection. It can be taken as it is or you can drink its juice without adding sugar.
Gargling is a procedure where you pour a few spoonfuls of a liquid onto your throat and let it swirl around and spit it out. It is one of the commonest remedies for a sore throat and is considered highly effective. You can do it 3-4 times a day for better results
Warm water gargle: Just plain warm water will give you relief from pain and swelling.
Salt Water Gargle: Add half a teaspoon of salt and 1/4th teaspoon turmeric powder to 1 cup of boiling water, bring it to a warm temperature and use it.
Baking Soda Gargle: Baking soda helps to kill some virus and bacteria, so add baking soda to hot water and gargle with bearable heat.
Hydrogen Peroxide: Mix a teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide to 1 cup warm water and gargle for at least 4-5 minutes.
Regardless of what remedy you choose, make sure you stay well hydrated by drinking enough water throughout the day, avoid cool drinks and juices, especially citrus, and ice creams, avoid smoking and spicy and acidic foods for fast relief from a sore throat.