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Kristin Hayes, R.N.

Sore Throat Remedies

By November 30, 2012

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If you're like millions of other Americans you may be suffering from a sore throat this time of year. While strep throat is a common bacterial culprit of a sore throat, there are many more causes that are viral in nature. Viruses that cause strep throat cannot be cured with antibiotics, unfortunately, you'll just have to wait for your immune system to fight off the illness. In the meantime you may wish to try some of these remedies for easing the pain of a sore throat:

  • Gargle with warm salt water.
  • Several different types of herbal teas are recommended including chamomile, and slippery elm. Many people recommend mixing honey and/or lemon in your herbal tea. Honey has been found to have antiseptic type properties and its consistency may also be soothing. Slippery Elm has long been touted as a remedy for sore throats. Some people will also mix in a tablespoon of vodka or bourbon. Make sure your tea is warm and not hot.
  • Suck on menthol or slippery elm lozenges.
  • Use a cool mist humidifier. Dry air can cause or worsen a sore throat, especially when post-nasal drip is involved.
  • Drink plenty of cool fluids. Cold decreases inflammation and your body needs extra fluids when you're sick. You can also suck on popcicles or eat slushies.

If you have another home remedy that you've found effective for sore throat, tell us about it here: Readers Respond: Home Remedies for Tonsillitis and Sore Throat

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