Strep Throat Home Remedies: Garlic, Salt, and More
Step throat is an inflammation of the throat, tonsils and lymph nodes. Strep Throat is an infection from group A streptococcus bacteria. Commonly caught during the flu season, strep throat warning signs include runny nose, sneezing, and a persistent cough. Strep throat incubation and symptoms occur within 3 to 5 days. Step throat symptoms include throat inflammation and swelling, pain when swallowing, difficulty breathing, a mucus/phlegmy cough, tiredness and fatigue, weakness, headache, nausea, poor appetite, enlarged lymph nodes and tonsils, excessive sweating, and fever. In short, you’re not going to feel like running to the store for cold and flu medicine when you are struck with unexpected strep throat. Having strep throat home remedies ready to make in your kitchen will be a life saver when you don’t even feel like getting out of bed, let alone driving to the store.
Is Strep Throat Contagious?
Strep throat is very contagious! The bacteria responsible for strep throat is easily passed through sneezing, coughing, or touching someone after sneezing or coughing into your hands. While strep throat doesn’t live long on surfaces, if left untreated strep throat is contagious for anywhere from 10 to 21 days, or even months! However, with treatment the contagious period is brief, about 24 hours. So it’s important to visit your doctor and have strep throat home remedies ready to make you more comfortable right away. Avoid getting strep throat through proper personal hygiene. Avoid contact with people infected with strep throat if possible, but if not then make sure to wash your hands before touching your face and to avoid being coughed or sneezed on by an infected person. Those with strep throat should consider staying home in order to not only feel better fast, but to avoid spreading the infection.
What Does Strep Throat Look Like?
Strep throat can be identified both through it’s symptoms (sore throat, headache, fever, nausea) as well as through visual examination. Strep throat signs include swollen tonsils, tonsils with white spots, and dark red spots or rash on the tonsils and soft palate/top of the mouth, and enlarged lymph nodes. A regular sore throat will probably not have the white spots, which are pockets of pus (gross!) and a sure sign of bacterial infection. Strep throat home remedies will help ease the signs and symptoms of this uncomfortable infection.
When left untreated, strep throat can cause serious health issues requiring a course of antibiotics. But with proper medical attention, the infection is easily cured with minimum risk of developing complications.
Strep Throat Home Remedies
Because strep throat is a contagious bacterial infection, it’s important to see your doctor because you may need antibiotics. However there are strep throat home remedies that can relieve symptoms to help your body to heal more quickly. With rest, plenty of fluids, and a natural remedy for strep throat you can start feeling better quickly. Like most other home remedies, these natural cures focus on alleviating the symptoms associated with strep throat rather than attacking the infection directly.
- Chamomile tea is one of the best home remedies for strep throat. Chamomile has analgesic properties. Analgesics are pain relievers, like aspirin. Drink a warm (not hot!) cup of chamomile tea to quickly treat strep throat pain. Taken every few hours, chamomile tea can also treat fever and dehydration.
- Sage tea or capsules reduce inflammation and redness as well as working to protect the soft tissues of the throat and respiratory system.
- Garlic is an herb that has natural antibiotic properties. You can just chew and swallow a raw garlic clove every hour, but another popular garlic strep throat home remedy is to chop a fresh garlic clove very finely, mix with a tablespoon of honey and a dash of cayenne pepper (both of which help with infections), then swallow a tablespoon full of the mix every half an hour. Don’t want to chew raw garlic? Garlic oil capsules deliver some of the benefits of raw garlic, though raw garlic is best.
- Salt is also a surprising home remedy for strep throat. Gargling with salt water fights the bacteria and reduces throat inflammation and pain. Saline nasal sprays decongest clogged airways as well, which is usually a sterile solution of salt and water purchased from the drugstore.
- Care for your airways and throat by breathing in warm, humid air. Avoid smoke and other irritants while fighting strep throat.
- Avoid very cold or very hot drinks as they could irritate your throat. Stick to soft foods like mashed potatoes, broth, and applesauce. Avoid dairy products because they can thicken your mucus and make your cough and runny nose even worse.
- Drink plenty of fluids to help keep hydrated. Stick to fever-reducing drinks like water, Gatorade, and chamomile tea.
- Get plenty of rest! By keeping well rested you’ll allow your body to use as much energy as possible to fight the strep throat infection.
With proper care you can expect to kick your strep throat symptoms in as soon as 24 hours. Usually strep throat symptoms don’t last longer than five days. Be sure to visit your doctor or local urgent care clinic to see if you need antibiotics. Stock up on plenty of garlic, honey, salt, sage, and chamomile tea now so that you’ll be ready the next time strep throat strikes!
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