Home General Health Strep Throat – Outlining The Sore Throat Disease

Strep Throat – Outlining The Sore Throat Disease

Streptococcal bacteria are responsible for causing the strep throat which is a contagious disease. Strep Throat is found in school going children of age 5-15 years. It is found that almost 40% cases of sore throat are caused due to streptococcus bacteria. Adults can also develop this but the chances are less.

Strep Throat

The general symptoms of the strep throat are sores, fever, and swollen lymph nodes, swelling in throat and redness and tonsils. Also, yellow coloured patches are observed on tonsils. The symptoms are either mild or severe.

Causes:

Sore throat can be caused due to many factors and doctors can guide you very well by judging your body. Generally, the carriers are the causes of spreading the disease and the bacteria survive up to 15 days and remain contagious and people develop the disease in congested areas.

  • Tonsils: The tonsils are the major factors that cause sores in throat. When the infection hits the throat, the tonsils get swollen and cause inflammation due to infection. Inflammation in tonsils can be the cause of the throat sores. Person showing infections from strep may develop similar symptoms and the discomfort observed is the same.
  • Streptococcal Pharyngitis: The area around the tonsils at the back region of the mouth referred as pharynx, inflammation of this region can develop sore throat. Similar to tonsils, pharynx functions to fight off the infection and immediately swells and gets gentle as a response to immune system. Tonsillitis and pharyngitis are indistinguishable from each other and some other throat problems and thus treatment should be in broad-brush form.
  • Bacterial causes: The cause of Strep throat is streptococcal bacteria which is responsible for people showing the symptoms and infections. The bacteria multiplies and grows in number inside the body, quickly the immune system gives the response by developing nausea, discomfort and throat pain so that it tries to fight against the infection. Just like other bacterial infections, strep can also be treated with antibiotics if you want to get it cured quickly.
  • Viral causes: There are some throat complaints that are observed due to the presence of virus instead of bacteria. There are several tests with the help of which doctor can identify the exact cause of sore throat.

Symptoms:

It is not necessary that two individual develop similar symptoms. Sometimes, the symptoms might be severe and in other cases those might be mild. A person when gets an infection starts to feel sick within 2-4 days. The symptoms observed are: Fever with high temperature, redness in throat, white patches on the throat, sores, nausea, headaches, illness, loss in appetite, difficulty in swallowing and swollen lymph nodes.

However, there are some species of strep can also cause scarlet fever. The rash developed is the allergy due to the toxins released by strep.

Diagnosis:

The diagnosis of strep throat is done through few tests in laboratory. There are some health professionals, which give medications without doing lab tests. Some factors make strep throat to become a viral throat and there is no certain sign that establishes the identification of strep throat.

The lab tests that rare used for diagnosis include:

  • Rapid antigen test: This is a detection test that is used by professional practitioners by washing the back of tonsils and throats. One can get the results in few minutes so that if there is any need of further treatment, it can be started. If the results come out positive for strep, the diagnosis for strep throat is sure. This test does not always give perfect results.
  • Throat culture: When the result of rapid test comes negative, the throat culture is taken and sent for the further testing in the lab. The throat culture is acquired just like the rapid test. You can get the results in a day or two. If the strep growth is observed during this time, the result comes out to be positive and the identification of strep throat is established.

Treatments:

If the sore throats are caused due to strep then it is treated only with antibiotics. The treatments that are effective against strep throat are:

  • Penicillin: With the help of treatment strep throat can be treated in 8-10 days. This is the cost effective and efficient treatment; it can be taken orally or in injections. Those who cannot take it orally an easily take this through injections. The derivative of penicillin i.e. amoxicillin is also equally effective.
  • Cephalosporin: This type of antibiotic is very effective in treating strep throat and is generally used as an alternative to the antibiotics mentioned above. This is the reasonable option and is available in many leading pharmacies.
  • Macrolides: The antibiotics coming under this class i.e. azithromycin and erythromycin and clarithromycin are recommended by the doctors to those who are allergic to penicillin.

Home remedies:

You can have warm liquids like honey in tea and lemon tea these will be better for your throat and can give relief as well. Gargle can be one of the best options if done with warm salted water. You can also, suck the hard candies or lozenges. If the throat is dry, a humidifier can help you in soothing the throat.

High quality food stuffs should be consumed like warm soup and sugary solutions; they are effective against strep throat. Avoid having caffeine, it cause loss of water from body. At times, cold liquids could be beneficial such as popsicles, cold drinks and ice creams and sodas.

Get maximum amount of sleep; it will give you rapid recovery. Herbals tea is significant in case of strep throat as it contains licorice which is helpful in giving relief.

Prevention and precautions:

The best method with which strep throat can be prevented is taking care of you so that it won’t pass on to others. Keep the infected utensils and drinking glasses separate from infected person. Cover your mouth while sneezing and coughing in public places if you have infection. Maintain the hygiene so that it can get cured as early as possible.

Questions to ask your doctor:

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms consult your doctor immediately. Ask him what the necessary tests are and make it happen. Show the results to the doctor and if are positive then follow the necessary treatments. Ask your doctor whether your body is compatible with the medications and also for the alternatives.

Special note:

It is important to avoid the spread of strep throat; it is highly contagious and takes almost a week to get cured. Thus, maintain the hygiene and healthy atmosphere to prevent the passing of the disease to others.