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Sick of your Sore Throat? Find out types, causes, treatments and home remedies

A sore throat – almost all of us have been there. It is one of the most common and famous symptoms when it comes to getting sick.

So let’s explore, what is 3 types, what causes it, conventional treatments as well as some home remedies that could help you

Disclaimer: This is not intended as medical advice and you should consult with your GP in the case of consistent symptoms

What Is a Sore Throat?

A sore throat is a painful, dry, or scratchy feeling in the throat that each of us has experienced at one point in their lives.

There are three different types of sore throat:

  1. Pharyngitis
  2. Tonsillitis
  3. Laryngitis

1. Pharyngitis

Pharyngitis is an inflammation of the pharynx and presents as a sore and painful throat. The most common cause is a viral infection, but it can also be caused by bacteria or another type of infection, such as strep throat.

2. Tonsillitis

Secondly, we have tonsillitis – a swelling of the tonsils which is the soft tissue of the back of the mouth. Again, this presents as a sore throat as well as difficulty swallowing. Much like Pharyngitis it is caused mainly by viral infections and is more typical in children.

3. Laryngitis

Laryngitis is an inflammation of the larynx, which is the organ that produces sound during speech. It has many causes, including acute upper respiratory tract infections, allergies, and vocal abuse. Normally it presents as dry, scratchy and raw throat.

It is also quite normal to have accompanying symptoms to the sore throat, as well – runny nose, nasal congestion, fever, cough, sneezes, body aches, headaches, etc.

You should also consider that sore throats can result from environmental factors such as smoking or inhaling other substances such as paint fumes, lead fumes, or fumes from glues.

What Causes A Sore Throat?

Where we explained the 3 types of sore throat, 1. viral infections are the most common causes with an estimated 90% of all cases of sore throat related to viruses.

2. Bacterial Infections

After viruses, we have bacterial infections. Pretty close to viruses, bacterial infections are also a common culprit with the most common bacterial infection being strep throat, which is caused by the Streptococcus bacteria.

3. Allergies

Next, we have allergies – almost every person has them, and though not particular dangerous, they can cause a sore throat! When the immune system reacts to allergy triggers like pollen, grass, and pet dander, it releases chemicals that cause symptoms like nasal congestion, watery eyes, sneezing, and throat irritation.

Excess mucus can drip down the back of the throat and cause inflammation and irritation.

4. The Environment

We also have environmental factors like dry air, which is also a prevalent factor for having a scratchy throat. Dry air can suck moisture from the mouth and throat and leave them feeling dry and irritated.

5. Smoking

The last reason for a sore throat is smoking. Tobacco smoke dries out the throat and leaves it feeling raw and tender as with any other type of smoke inhalation from bushfires and fireplaces.

Treatment Options  

How can you actually treat a sore throat? Honey? Tea? A goodnight shot of whiskey, perhaps?

Disclaimer: This is not intended as medical advice and you should consult with your GP in the case of consistent symptoms

1. Viral Infections

This type of cause can make your sore throat last for up to six or seven days and usually subsides on its own during this time. An important point here is that antibiotics do not help cure a sore throat caused by a viral infection.

To ease pain or fever caused by a viral infection, taking acetaminophen or other mild pain relievers (Tylenol and others) can be an option.

2. Bacterial Infections

When it is diagnosed by a GP as a bacterial infection, you will probably receive a prescription for antibiotics or alternatively from an Integrated Practitioner maybe some probiotics.

It is essential that the prescribed treatment be followed to the letter especially to the numbers of days even if feel better or not. If not, this could lead to the infection coming back, worsening, or spreading throughout other parts of the body.

Home Remedies

Before western medicine, home remedy treatments were passed throughout the generations with differing levels of success. Here is the top 5 home remedies for sore throats –

  1. Rest – Getting plenty of sleep and resting your voice are practically the two best things that you can do.
  2. Drinking Fluids – lots and lots to get that bug out of your system faster.
  3. Consume comforting foods and drinks – this is generally hot drinks like tea, warm water with honey, broth, etc.
  4. Gargling with salt water may also be a very effective way to help out your throat with the pain. A saltwater gargle of ¼ to ½ teaspoon (1250 to 2500 milligrams) of table salt to 120 to 240 ml of warm water can help soothe.
  5. Humidify the air – It’s important to let fresh air in the room from time to time.

Other alternative options include herbal teas and/or soups with different combinations of slippery elm, liquorice root, marshmallow root, ginger and garlic. It is important to know that not one of these methods maybe efficient by itself and a combination of these methods can be more beneficial.

Happy healing!


Cameron Corish

Cameron Corish has been caring and achieving results for the local Wishart, Mansfield and Mt Gravatt community for over 10 years. Together with the Core Health Coaching Team, he takes a multi-disciplined and holistic approach to health and fitness addressing the physical, mental and emotional aspects of one’s health.  

Ready to feel and look your best?  Come in for a FREE chat and see how we can transform your life.  Call 0406 451 907 or email Cameron at

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