One of the most common winter sicknesses is strep throat, and some people seem to get each and every year. And interestingly, strep throat is one condition where antibiotics are generally over-prescribed.
In the olden days, strep throat used to lead to rheumatic fever, which required prompt medical intervention. But these days, complications from strep throat are very rare, and throat cultures taken to obtain a diagnosis often raise false red flags. It’s totally normal to have small amounts of strep bacteria in the throat at all times, so patients may receive a positive strep test result even if they don’t have an infection that antibiotics would help. When your body consumes antibiotics that it doesn’t need, harmful bacteria can begin to develop and become resistant to the medication so that it won’t help when you actually do have an infection.
All of this leads us back to a steadfast belief that natural solutions are best whenever possible. Here’s some information about strep throat and natural ways to treat it.
How Strep Throat Spreads
Strep throat is very contagious, which means that its easy to spread this condition from person to person in normal daily activities. The bacteria that causes strep throat can be spread by skin contact, sharing utensils, or even touching doorknobs. Since many people spend more time indoors and in close quarters during the winter months, strep throat can spread rapidly during this season.
Strep Throat Symptoms
Most sore throats are caused by viruses, while strep throats are caused by bacterial infections. In fact, having a sore throat is a symptom of the condition known as strep throat. While sore throats in general are often accompanied by other cold symptoms, these may not exist with strep. Other common strep throat symptoms include swollen and red tonsils, swollen lymph nodes, fever, headache, body aches, and discolorations on the roof of the mouth and tonsils.
Natural Strep Throat Remedies
In this section, we’re going to highlight a few of the many natural strep throat remedies that have offered people some relief.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Pretty much every natural remedy list includes apple cider vinegar, and this is one of the most effective ones for strep throat. Add a couple teaspoons of it to a glass of warm water and gargle with it for at least 30 seconds. For more health benefits, you can simply sip apple cider vinegar throughout the day.
Honey has natural bacteria-fighting properties and provides a soothing coating for the throat. Mix a teaspoon in your tea to soothe the pain and counter any infection that exists.
Broth made from chicken, fish, or other animal bones is known to boost the immune and digestive systems. It is also easy to swallow when you have a sore throat.
Garlic has been studied extensively for its infection-fighting properties, so consider adding more of it to your diet when you have strep throat. One recommendation is to mix raw garlic and honey to create a paste, and then eat it by the teaspoon.
Vitamin C is the go-to vitamin when you’re sick, and strep throat is no exception. But be mindful of the fact that it may be difficult to eat citrus fruits or swallow supplement pills when you have strep throat. This is where vitamin C-rich juices come into play.
People who live far away from the equator often experience vitamin D deficiencies in the winter due to fewer hours of available sunlight. Therefore, it may be a good idea to add more vitamin D-rich foods to your meals in the winter. Vitamin D has shown to be an effective flu treatment and may help with strep throat as well.
The purpose of probiotics is to support good bacteria in the body and establish a healthy bacterial balance. Fermented vegetables, yogurt, and kombucha are great natural sources of probiotics that you can try eating when you have strep throat.
Natural Throat Spray
For soothing relief of the symptoms of a sore throat, try Seagate’s Olive Leaf Throat Spray. We have been making this product since 2003. It helps to sooth a wide variety of throat “irritations”.