Strep Throat: Symptoms and Home Remedies

by John Staughton last updated -

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One of the most common infections, particularly among children, is strep throat, and due to its contagious nature, it is important to recognize the symptoms quickly, and also know home remedies for the infection, including the use of salt water, garlic, cayenne, apple cider vinegar, licorice root, honey, peppermint, and fenugreek tea, among others.

Home Remedies for Strep Throat

Home Remedies for Strep Throat are as follows:

Garlic

As with so many other ailments, one of the most effective and fast-acting home remedies for strep throat is a clove of garlic. While this hardly sounds appetizing, if you are suffering with this infection, you can cut a garlic clove in half and suck on it, occasionally swallowing and allowing your saliva to carry the garlic’s natural compounds down into the throat. Garlic contains allicin as its active ingredient, which has powerful antibacterial properties and can also reduce inflammation, thus helping soothe the painful burning in your throat and attacking the underlying infection.

Salt Water

Few remedies are as simple or successful as a salt water gargle when it comes to naturally treating a strep throat. The taste is anything but pleasant, but it can quickly suck the water from the inflamed tissues and cells in your throat, easing the pressure and making it easier to swallow. Salt is also very effective at breaking up mucus, so any associated congestion from the infection in your sinuses can be cleared out as well, speeding the healing process.

Chamomile Tea

Not only is chamomile a soothing and delicious beverage, but it also has certain antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and astringent properties, which can help it eliminate strep throat very quickly. Chamomile tea is known to boost the immune system to fend off the underlying infection, while the astringent properties can help relieve the raw, narrow feeling in your throat that makes swallowing so painful.

Honey

As a natural healing agent, honey is packed with important minerals, antioxidants and organic compounds that can boost overall health. However, there is a very good reason why people put honey in their tea so often; it naturally coats the throat and relieves inflammation and pain, being an analgesic. This can reduce the irritation in the throat and also stimulate the healing process by neutralizing dangerous bacteria.

Lemon and Water

Many of the best remedies for strep throat include gargling, and mixing lemon and water is also highly effective. Gargling this mixture can soothe the throat and also deliver citric acid and antibacterial effects to the inflamed areas, helping you to get relief and ward off the bacteria.

Ginger

Ginger is a powerful antioxidant compound with an active ingredient called gingerol, which has immune-boosting properties and can easily defend against the bacteria that causes strep throat. Let ginger soak in water overnight and then gargle each morning; it will not only clear your sinuses, but also help eliminate the bacterial infection more quickly.

Cayenne

It may seem counterintuitive to put cayenne pepper in your throat, given how spicy it can be, but in reality, capsaicin (the active ingredient in most peppers) is an excellent analgesic and anti-inflammatory substance. Mix some cayenne pepper with water and gargle for 10-20 seconds and feel the irritation of strep throat disappear!

Steam Inhalation

As with many respiratory problems, inhaling steam deep into your lungs can help to loosen congestion and works as an expectorant. Since excess coughing and congestion can wear on the throat, further irritating the inflamed tissues, getting this congestion out is crucial, particularly because the bacteria often seeks out mucus to multiply and thrive.

Apple Cider Vinegar

There is an extremely high level of acidity in apple cider vinegar, which means that it can effectively eliminate bacteria, and it has long been known as an immune system booster. Mixing a bit of apple cider vinegar into lukewarm water and gargling with it 1-2 times per day can speed the recovery process of strep throat.

Peppermint

One of the key ingredients in peppermint that delivers so many of its health benefits if menthol, which is well known to cut through mucus and soothe the throat, reducing the urge to cough, which would further irritate the inflamed tissues. Peppermint oil mixed with water can be an excellent way to reduce inflammation and speed healing.

Turmeric

With its legendary active ingredient curcumin, turmeric remains a popular remedy for almost every affliction you can think of. The incredible antioxidant potential of turmeric is an instant boost for the immune system and can quickly knock out the infection causing strep throat, while also reducing inflammation in the throat and easing pain, as a result of its analgesic properties.

Licorice Root

A very effective tea for curing strep throat can be made with licorice root, as it functions as a cough suppressant. The irritation of strep throat can cause excessive coughing, which then makes the throat more inflamed, forming a vicious cycle. A cup of this tea, however, and the urge to cough will disappear.

Final Word of Warning: While strep throat is often considered “harmless”, remember that it is highly contagious for 2-3 weeks without the use of antibiotics, and special care should be taken when sending a child back to school. Severe pain or long-lasting symptoms should definitely be presented to a doctor, and antibiotics should be considered, particularly if this is the first time strep throat has been contracted.

About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, and publisher who earned his English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign, Urbana (USA). He is the co-founder of a literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and calls the most beautiful places in the world his office. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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