What is a sore throat?
An infection of the throat can cause inflammation, leading to feelings of soreness, scratchiness and pain. A sore throat is commonly caused by a viral infection, such as a cold or the flu. A sore throat can also be caused by a bacterial infection (this is called strep throat), cigarette smoke or other irritants.
What are the symptoms of a sore throat?
Along with a sore, scratchy throat, other symptoms may include:
- Difficulty or pain when swallowing
- Swollen glands around the neck or jaw
- Swollen tonsils
- Decreased appetite
- Hoarse voice or pain when talking
How is a sore throat treated?
Most sore throats caused by a viral infection will get better within a few days. A mild pain reliever like acetaminophen can help with symptoms of pain and fever. Be sure to rest and drink plenty of fluids. Strep throat is usually treated with antibiotics.
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