6 Natural Sore Throat Soothers

glass jar full of honey and stick(BlackDoctor.org) — Most sore throats are caused by viruses related to colds, so antibiotics, which fight bacteria, won’t help. Instead, treatments for sore throats from colds aim to relieve symptoms such as painful swallowing and scratchiness in the throat.

Home remedies may be just as effective as medications to relieve sore throats.  However, some sore throats are caused by bacteria (strep throat for instance) and do require antibiotics. Check with your doctor to be sure.

Effective sore throat remedies include:

• Get plenty of rest and drink a lot of fluids.

• Gargle with warm salt water (1 teaspoon of salt per glass of water).

• Suck on throat lozenges or hard candy.

• Suck on frozen treats (such as Popsicles).

• Use a humidifier to create a warm or cool mist in your room. This may help relieve hoarseness and soothe swollen air passages.

• Sip warm tea with honey or chicken broth. These old home remedies help comfort many people and help you get more fluids.

• Try steam inhalations to ease the pain. Run very hot water in a sink. With a towel draped over your head to trap the steam, lean over the sink while the hot water is running. Breathe deeply through your mouth and nose for five to 10 minutes. Repeat several times a day. Always be careful not to burn yourself with the hot water or steam.

• Take acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen for pain relief.