A sore throat is also known as pharyngitis which is inflammation of the pharynx. It is usually caused by a viral infection however bacterial infection can also lead to a sore throat. Symptoms of pharyngitis include, pain in back of throat, pain worsening on swallowing or talking, swollen or red tonsils, hoarse voice, white patches or pus in back of mouth. In addition to a sore throat you may also have fevers, chills, body aches, runny nose, sneezing, and cough.
There are many bacteria and viruses than can cause pharyngitis, but other causes include allergies, dryness and postnasal drip. Anyone can get a sore throat however children are more likely as are those who smoke cigarettes, those with allergies, other upper respiratory tract or sinus infections, in close living quarters or with lower immunity. Not treating a sore throat due to bacteria can lead to worsening infection and pus developing into the tonsils or back of throat that may eventually need to be surgically removed such as by an incision and drainage procedure. Thus it is important to see your doctor early if you feel ill.
If you have a sore throat, at CityMD urgent care , you may be given a throat swab to look for bacteria that cause strep throat. This simple bedside test provides results within 5 minutes. You may be given antibiotics if a bacterial infection exists. If the sore throat is more likely due to a virus then there are some home remedies that you can try such as warm saltwater gargles, warm liquids such as tea, ice pops that sooth the throat, resting, drinking plenty of fluids, throat lozenges, and taking ibubrofen (Advil, motrin and others) or acetaminophen (Tylenol).