Cure a sore throat; by learning to recognize symptoms for better treatment

Too often used to describe a disease, sore throat is, in fact, a symptom of more general medical disorders. Among them, sore throat, laryngitis, pharyngitis and nasopharyngitis. Learn to recognize them for better treatment.

ANGINA: IS IT VIRAL OR BACTERIAL?

Frequently implicated in the onset of sore throat, angina usually begins in a brutal way.

“It is accompanied by a high fever (up to 40 ° C) that lasts up to five days, said Dr. Esther Cohen Harboun, ENT doctor in Paris. Pain in the throat is usually very intense and can prevent solid food consumption. Angina is not accompanied by other symptoms (runny nose, cough or hoarseness). ”

On examination there is redness or white spots or white coating on the tonsils, and large painful lymph nodes in the neck.

The virus most often, angina can however be caused by bacteria (beta-hemolytic streptococcus is commonly responsible for the disease). It is important to know the origin of the disorder because the different treatments according to the agent responsible for the infection.

A TEST TO IDENTIFY INFECTIOUS AGENT

“For about five years, there are diagnostic tests (specific to angina) to be carried out in five minutes and ENT doctors in general. They evaluate whether the disease is viral or bacterial. Through these tests, doctors prescribe antibiotics to people who suffer from angina caused by bacteria, “says Dr. Cohen Harboun.

Another alternative: the removal of the throat. The doctor scrapes the back of the throat with a sort of long cotton swab.After sending to the laboratory for instant analysis, the disease is clearly identified as being or not being a streptococcus infection.

WHAT TREATMENT?

Antibiotic treatment can prevent complications caused by the bacterium (rheumatic fever, for example) and prevent contagion. It extends up to ten days and must be scrupulously observed even when the patient’s general condition improves.

“The rest of the time, when the throat is viral, or physicians treat the symptoms. The throat infection and pain are treated with lozenges, antiseptic spray and local anti-inflammatory drugs, said Dr. Esther Cohen Harboun. The temperature of the patient, if it is high, should be monitored and treated with paracetamol.”

PHARYNGITIS AND LARYNGITIS: WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES?

Acute pharyngitis have the same symptoms as angina (pain in the throat aggravated by swallowing and sometimes fever). It usually is of viral origin but may, as angina, be caused by bacteria (the most frequent in the germ is streptococcus bacterial pharyngitis). This form can be treated by taking painkillers and mouthwashes. Antibiotic treatment is prescribed in the presence of bacterial pharyngitis.

Infectious pharyngitis leads, in turn, diffuse redness and pain in the throat, usually less intense, and low-grade fever.Other diseases of the respiratory mucosa are often present. When a sore throat is accompanied by impairment of the nose and aches, it is called postnasal drip. Cough appears when it is tracheitis or bronchitis. When associated with hoarseness or laryngeal discomfort is laryngitis. These are mainly symptoms are treated (throat lozenges, paracetamol for fever, mouth washes for the nose).

Laryngitis sometimes causes a fever, but it is mainly characterized by hoarseness or complete loss of voice, difficulty breathing and sometimes (especially in children when it hits the sub-glottis (lower part of the larynx small class children).

NASOPHARYNGITIS, PRIMARILY A DISEASE OF CHILDHOOD

“The nasopharyngitis is more a disease of the child and the adult. It is thanks to her, among other things, he acquires immunity during the first five years of life: it is a disease of adaptation, “says Dr. Cohen Harboun.

Nasopharyngitis is very common in early childhood. Until the age of six months, the baby is immunized by the antibodies that his mother sent him during pregnancy. From six months, the child makes its own antibodies and this is when it starts to get sick. Viruses are often the root causes of violations of the airways. Nasopharyngitis may worsen later in lung disorders or ear infections until the age of 5 or 6 years.

“It is normal for a child to up to five nasopharyngitis spaced several months in the first three years of his life, says Dr. Cohen Harboun. Urban children are often sick and have reached the nose and ear infections because they are held in communities and share germs. ”

Similarly, children of smoking parents, who are iron deficient and those who are too often exposed to sudden changes in temperature are more frequently sick.

The treatment of nasopharyngitis based on the same principles as that of angina. If the disease is viral, the symptoms are relieved using paracetamol for fever and lozenges for sore throat. If it is bacterial, antibiotic treatment is required for a period of about ten days.

SORE THROAT: BASIC PRECAUTIONS

The mouth and throat are usually the first gateway for foreign body (bacteria) or infectious agents (viruses) whatsoever.

So be careful! To avoid catching or transmitting bacteria or viruses associated with sore throat, it is essential to wash hands thoroughly and regularly, avoid touching your eyes and cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough.

It is also important to sleep at least eight hours a night, avoid smoky places, pollution and food too hot.

Hydrate and moisten your throat by drinking enough water regularly and sucking lozenges: they improve, and more blood flow to the muscles of the throat.

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