One of my favorite ways to soothe a sore, scratchy throat: Iced Green Tea from Starbucks.
There are certain sore throats that call for a trip to the doctor. Strep throat, for example, requires antibiotics. Left untreated, a viral infection like strep throat can be very dangerous. If you suspect that this is the cause of your sore throat, make an appointment right away.
My experience has been that most sore throats don’t require a trip to the doctor. A trip to the kitchen (or bathroom), followed by a trip to the couch is all that”s required!
While I was growing up, my mother always reached for the canister of salt when I complained of a sore throat. The tradition has continued and it’s the first thing I reach for when one of my daughters says she has a sore throat. I won’t lie, when you first begin gargling with warm salt water, it won’t feel particularly wonderful – but as soon as you’re finished with your glass, something remarkable happens: Your sore throat feels much better.
If you want to REALLY make your throat forget its worries, follow up the warm salt water with something very, very cold such as a Popsicle or sherbet. This is a particularly wonderful way to numb your throat if you’re trying to get to sleep.
During cold and flu season, sinus drainage is a major reason for sore throats. Be certain you blow your nose frequently and sleep upon several pillows. These are measures that’ll lessen the drainage, and lessen the pain by the drain.
Always drink a lot of liquids when you feel bad and get plenty of rest. Sort of hole up on the couch, watching reruns of The Golden Girls, Friends, I Love Lucy, Good Times, and Sanford and Son. Take it as an opportunity to treat your body to complete rest. Don’t fall for the premise of “fighting your way through it,” the proverbial “it” will catch up with you – and if you keep going to work, school, and social activities, you’ll only make everyone else around you sick. If that’s not enough to stop you in your tracks, maybe this will: If you spread sickness around, chances are you’ll end up getting sick all over again! When your immunity is down, you’re susceptible to a host of problems.
Stay on your couch!
If you thought gargling warm salt water sounded ridiculously gross, you’re going to love this next home remedy for sore throats: Drink cold pickle juice. I know, I know. Sounds horrible – and it’s not exactly a chocolate cookie – but for reasons I can’t explain, this seems to soothe many sore throats. Each sore throat is different, of course, but I’ve had pretty good luck with pickle juice. Simply pour out a little bit of the juice from your dill pickles into a glass. Then slowly drink the pickle juice, letting it rest on your throat before swallowing it.
I did this approach just this morning, actually. It often causes you to cough up the phlegm that’s on your throat, irritating it.
Needless to say, don’t overlook ibuprofen, Tylenol, throat drops, and throat sprays.
If you’re able to get out to go through a drive-thru (or if you have someone kind enough to bring them to you), the following are amazing treats for soothing sore throats:
- Fazoli’s Frozen Lemon Ice
- Sonic’s Diet Cherry Limeade
- McDonald’s Sweet Tea
- Green Tea Frapp (or any frapp!) from Starbucks
Obviously, the trick is to ice it down and put out the burn. But trust me, if the icy treat comes AFTER gargling with warm salt water…. the effects will last longer.
Take care of yourself and I hope you’re as good as new by this time tomorrow!