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Viral Throat Infection Home Treatments

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Treating viral throat infection at home

If you have a viral throat infection, you need to be patient and give it time to get better (antibiotics won’t help). But there are some home remedies for viral throat infections (pharyngitis) that can help relieve a sore throat and cold symptoms. They may include rest and drinking lots of fluids, soothing lozenges, and OTC pain and cold medications.

Call your healthcare provider if you have certain symptoms, like fever, white spots or streaks on the back of your throat, or swollen lymph glands. You may have strep throat, which needs to be treated with antibiotics.

OTC treatments for viral throat infection

  • Pain relievers like acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)
  • Sore throat sprays and lozenges that contain menthol, benzocaine, or other soothing ingredients
  • Honey can help soothe a sore throat. Honey should not be given to children under 1 year old.
  • Zinc lozenges (Cold-Eeze) may reduce the severity and length of symptoms.
  • Throat Coat is a tea with herbs that helps soothe a sore throat.

How to treat a viral throat infection naturally

  • Drink warm tea with honey.
  • Drink lots of fluids.
  • Gargle with salt water.
  • Use a humidifier to reduce environmental dryness, which may soothe your throat.
  • Avoid exposure to cigarette smoke, which can irritate your throat.

Go to the ER if you are having difficulty swallowing or breathing, or have swelling at the back of your throat.

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Home treatments for viral throat infection

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