All three of us (my sons and me) recently had an upper
respiratory virus that ran 15 to 20 days and included about a week of terrible
sore throats. As long as I was sitting
around I did some research on sore throats and we tried the various
remedies. What seemed to work best was a
combination of several. It's a good idea
to try several and find a combination that works well for you.
1. Humidifier -
This you should do no matter what other methods you are employing. Not only does the moisture soothe your sore
throat, it also helps to loosen up the congestion in your lungs if you have
that as well.
2. Zinc Lozenges
- I have friends that swear by these.
They help relieve a sort throat and there is some evidence that Zinc
works to shorten the length of the cold virus.
3. Warm Salt Water
- We preferred the water hotter as that seemed to provide more relief. Salt can
also kill the bacteria in your throat that is contributing to the pain. A teaspoon of salt in a cup or two of
warm/hot water makes a good solution.
4. Herbal Tea -
Herbal varieties may contain an immune booster, such as goldenseal root or
echinacea; licorice, which is antiviral and antibacterial; or marshmallow herb,
which helps produce the protective mucous in your throat. I’m not convinced
that the immune boosters are really there but a cup of hot, herbal tea can be
soothing for many people.
5. Numbing Sprays
– You can buy these over-the-counter (Chloraseptic, etc.) and they contain
topical anesthetics that do kill the pain immediately. The numbing effect may not last terribly long
and you may or may not like the taste. But,
if you have a terrible sore throat and you are at your wits end – this is the
way to go so that you have some relief.
If your sore throat persists than ask your doctor for a
prescription pain medicine so that you can eat and so that you can sleep. But, hopefully, some of these ideas will
bring you a measure of relief.