Nearly everyone has experienced the uncomfortable feeling of waking up in the morning with a terribly sore throat. Sore throats are common in people of all ages, and they can strike without much warning when you least expect them.
Here are some of the most common causes of sore throat and tips for how to prevent sore throats before they develop and become worse.
Colds and the Flu
Especially around this time of year, the most common reasons that people get sore throats are because of the common cold and the flu. These types of sore throats are often accompanied by congestion, fever, and coughing.
People who have seasonal allergies often have sore throats as one of their systems. These sore throats may be felt alongside watery eyes and sneezing. The symptoms are caused when the body’s immune system reacts abnormally to dust, pollen, or other allergens.
Simply living in a dry climate or not being hydrated enough can result in a sore throat as well. Dry air makes your throat feel parched and scratchy, which is particularly problematic in the winter months when you are indoors with the heater running. Drink lots of water to keep your throat lubricated at all times.
Strep throat is a bacterial infection that is especially common among children. It causes the throat and tonsils to become and inflamed and feel painful. This condition is contagious and is conventionally treated with antibiotics.
Certain toxins in the environment can also lead to a sore throat if you are exposed to them for a period of time or while your immune system is weak. Irritants include air pollution, chemical cleaning products, and cigarette smoke.
Other Viral Infections
In addition to colds and the flu, other types of viruses can cause sore throats. These include chickenpox, the mumps, measles, and mononucleosis.
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
Also known as GERD, this digestive condition makes the stomach acid move back into the esophagus. This acid can burn the throat and cause painful symptoms.
Preventing Sore Throats
Good hygiene goes a long way for sore throat prevention, so wash your hands frequently and avoid being around people who are sick. It also helps to stay hydrated, avoid sharing cups and utensils with others, and steering clear of secondhand smoke. Keeping a humidifier or air filter in your bedroom at night can also reduce toxins in the air and restore the moisture your throat needs.
At the first sign of a sore throat, we recommend using Seagate’s Olive Leaf Throat Spray. It is available in unflavored and raspberry mint versions and works well with two sprays every couple hours. This throat spray is also a great preventative homeopathic remedy during the winter flu season and when you’re traveling on planes. This antimicrobial therapy is made from our very own olive leaves that we harvest and process each year and has none of the side effects of modern pharmaceutical drugs.