Does it feel painful when you swallow? Does your throat feel scratchy? If yes, you may have a sore throat. There are several causes of a sore throat and cough, like allergies, bacteria, virus, or exposure to smoke. Most cases of sore and itchy throat go away on their own if you get bed rest, drink plenty of fluids, eat a cough lozenge, or simply gargle salt water.
But if you have tried all possible home remedies as well as over-the-counter medications, and you still haven’t found any relief, it could be a sign of a more serious ailment. You may need to talk to a doctor and take some prescribed antibiotics if this is the case.
Causes of a Sore Throat and Cough
Identifying the cause of a sore throat and cough is not always easy. But this condition is very common and patients get better within 7 days. It is highly likely that your sore throat and cough is being caused by minor conditions like seasonal flu or cold, and can be treated at home. Let’s take a look at some of the most common causes of a sore throat:
- Flu or cold (Symptoms: runny nose, fever, and headache)
- Tonsillitis (Symptoms: fever, difficulty swallowing, and reddened tonsils)
- Strep throat (Symptoms: difficulty swallowing, swollen glands in your neck)
- Laryngitis (Symptoms: dry cough and hoarse voice)
- Glandular fever (Symptoms: fever, fatigue, swollen glands in your neck)
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Exposure to smoke
Apart from these common symptoms, you may also experience some less-than-common symptoms of sore throat and cough, such as:
Epiglottitis: This refers to the inflammation of the tissue at the back of the throat, resulting in pain when you try to swallow or breathe.
Quinsy: This is when painful pus gets collected at the back of the throat, leading you to feel extreme pain when you try to swallow or open your mouth.
Treatments for a Sore Throat and Cough
If you are experiencing coughing episodes or your throat is sore, take the following steps before you visit a doctor:
- Take an over-the-counter pain reliever
- Eat soft, cool foods (don’t eat anything hot)
- Drink plenty of cold or warm fluids (don’t drink anything hot)
- Suck on medicated lozenges
- Gargle with warm, salty water
- Use a medicated throat spray (easily available pharmacies)
- Stop smoking and going to smoky places
If your sore throat and cough symptoms have grown severe and you’re not noticing any improvement, you should contact your doctor immediately. This also goes for people who have a weak immune system of those who are undergoing chemotherapy.
If you are experiencing severe sore throats on a frequent basis, it may be due to a serious underlying condition. Consider getting in touch with an online doctor at 24 Hour Docs.
Get Relief From Your Sore Throat And Cough Today
At 24 Hour Docs, our board-certified doctors will evaluate your symptoms and advise the best treatment plan. If they think your case is severe, they may advise visiting the Emergency Room. Call us at 877-244-6876 or contact us online to book a consultation today.