You can have a sore throat for many reasons. Often, contagious viral infections like colds and the flu cause sore throats. Other causes can include:
- Allergies, like hay fever, dust, pet dander and mold
- Mononucleosis, a contagious viral infection
- Strep throat, a contagious bacterial infection
To soothe an irritated throat, keep it moist. You can ease the pain by sucking on lozenges or hard candy, drinking lots of liquids (warm or cold), gargling and using humidifiers. Over-the-counter pain relievers can also help, but children should not take aspirin.
Treatment depends on the cause. Contact a doctor if your sore throat is severe, doesn’t feel better after a few days, or is accompanied by a high fever or swollen glands.
If you have questions or concerns about your symptoms now, see a Mercyhealth health care provider at Virtual Visit Now.
Mercyhealth Virtual Visit Now gives you remote access to the best of health care from your phone, tablet or computer. Our Virtual Visit Now team can help you feel better from the comfort of your own home. After assessing your symptoms, they’ll recommend treatments that can include simple comfort measures, prescription medicine or an office visit.
Virtual Visit Now is not available for emergency care. If you need emergency care, please call 911.