Find out the cause of your sore throat and how to treat it.
Yikes! You woke up with a sore throat. Now what? Our Valdosta, GA, otolaryngologists Dr. Ronald Allen, Dr. Thomas Phillips and Dr. Theodore Kanne are here to tell you the causes of acute (and persistent) sore throats and how to treat this issue when it arises.
Causes of an Acute Sore Throat
There are many things that can bring about a sore throat, and it will be difficult to self-diagnose yourself without visiting us for a proper evaluation. Common causes include,
Viral infections: This is the most common cause of acute sore throats. Common viral infections include everything from the common cold and respiratory infections to flu, mononucleosis and mumps.
Bacterial infections: While a less common cause, bacteria can still contribute to a sore throat. Tonsillitis (an inflammation of the tonsils), diphtheria and even certain STDs (e.g. chlamydia) can bring about this acute symptom.
Environmental elements: If you are a smoker, work in an environment surrounded by certain chemicals, or you live somewhere with elevated air pollutants, then you may be more likely to develop a sore throat from time to time.
Causes of a Chronic Sore Throat
If you are dealing with a sore throat that lasts over a week or if you get frequent sore throats, several conditions or issues could be going on.
Everything from excessive alcohol consumption and smoking to air pollution and cheering loudly at a sporting event can lead to a lingering sore throat. If you find that your sore throat comes about from drinking alcohol or eating spicy foods (and is accompanied by other symptoms like heartburn) then you could be dealing with a condition known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
When to See a Doctor
You need to seek immediate medical attention if you or a child is having difficulty swallowing or breathing due to a sore throat. This is considered a medical emergency.
While not a medical emergency, it’s a good idea to pick up the phone and schedule an appointment with one of our Valdosta, GA, ENT doctors if you or a child is dealing with a lingering sore throat (lasting more than a week), if you have trouble or pain when swallowing, if you develop a rash or a fever, or if you notice a lump in your neck.
If you are dealing with a severe or a chronic sore throat, then it’s time you turned to the experts at ENT and Allergy Associates of South Georgia to get the answers you need. Call our Valdosta, GA, ENT office today to schedule an appointment with us.