Sore throats are a right misery – and coughing only makes them worse. What ever else you do, try to give your voice a rest – that means no shouting or singing “Covooooonia” for a few days!
Do's for Sore Throats
- Try gargling with warm salt water. Gargles should not be swallowed, but spat out after gargling is done. A teaspoonful of salt in a glass of warm water is traditionally used.
- Have a warm (not hot) cup of tea or warm drinking chocolate to help relieve a sore throat by warming the irritated membranes.
- Put a bowl of water near your radiator at night to keep the air humid and your throat lining moist.
- Brush your tongue. Sometimes removing the build-up on your tongue can lessen the soreness in your throat.
- Drink ice-cold drinks. Try filling a glass half-full of crushed ice; then pour fruit juice over the ice. Let it sit for 10 minutes, insert a straw and suck slowly, letting the juice rest a minute on the back of your throat.
Don't's for Sore Throats
- Smoke if possible, as it will further irritate the lining of the throat.
- Eat spicy foods, as these may make your throat worse.
- Close your windows (fresh air is good for your immune system).
See your GP if:
- A mild sore throat lasts for two weeks or more.
- Pain does not improve after 3 or 4 days of treatment.
A sore throat is accompanied by:
- Pain on opening the mouth.
- Cough with blood stained sputum.
- Difficulty breathing.
- A skin rash.
- Swelling on one side of the throat with severe pain.
- Loss of appetite or severe fatigue.
- Hoarseness doesn’t improve with time or treatment.
- Severe joint pains, stiff neck and dislike of light.