Strep throat is especially common among children and young adults, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get it when you are older. According to the CDC, around 11,000 to 24,000 Americans fall ill to this common infection every year.
How are we supposed to know if we have strep throat, though? Read on as our team at AFC Urgent Care Farragut further explains.
What Should I Know About Strep Throat?
The first thing to know is that strep throat is an infection in the throat and tonsils caused by bacteria called group A Streptococcus.
When you have strep, it lives in the nose and throat, which means that it can be spread by coughing or sneezing. When you cough or sneeze, you spread respiratory droplets into the air that contain the strep bacteria, which, when breathed in by others, can cause them to become infected. If you experience any of the symptoms that we’ve listed below, you likely have strep throat.
Common Strep Throat Symptoms
- Sudden sore throat
- Red tonsils that have white spots on them
- Pain when swallowing
- Swollen neck glands
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal pain
Is There a Guaranteed Way to Know If I Have Strep?
One of the best ways to tell if your symptoms constitute a virus-caused sore throat or strep throat is by the presence of a cough. A cough is not a symptom of strep throat, while it is a symptom of a cold virus.
Another reliable way to know whether or not you have strep throat is by getting a rapid strep test. If your doctor suspects strep, this simple, painless and quick test can confirm the diagnosis. If the test comes back positive, your doctor will likely prescribe antibiotics to help you recover. Alongside antibiotics, the additional at-home remedies that we’ve listed below should help you feel better!
At-Home Remedies for Strep Throat
- Taking over-the-counter pain medication, like ibuprofen
- Gargling saltwater
- Sipping warm beverages, like tea with honey or lemon
- Using a humidifier to keep your throat and mouth from drying out
Have you been experienced strep-throat-related symptoms lately? If so, don’t hesitate to visit AFC Urgent Care Farragut to get the care you need!