Do you often feel like something is caught in your throat? Are you constantly clearing your throat, or have a hoarse voice?
If so, you might be suffering from one of several common throat illnesses. Specifically, many people ignore these symptoms, thinking they will go away on their own.
Unfortunately, this can lead to more serious health problems down the road. In this blog post, we will discuss six of the most common throat illnesses and their associated symptoms.
Pharyngitis, more commonly known as a “sore throat,” is one of the most common throat illnesses. It can be caused by viral or bacterial infections, allergies, or even irritants such as tobacco smoke.
The main symptom is pain in the back of the throat that may be accompanied by swollen tonsils and difficulty swallowing. Treatment for pharyngitis usually involves rest, fluids, and over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain relief.
Laryngitis is an inflammation of the larynx (voice box) that can be caused by viral or bacterial infections, allergies, overuse of the voice, or inhaling irritants such as smoke.
Common symptoms include hoarseness and a sore throat that persists for more than two weeks. Treatment includes avoiding vocal strain, drinking plenty of fluids to keep your throat moist, and gargling with salt water.
Tonsillitis is an inflammation of the tonsils caused by viral or bacterial infections like strep throat. Symptoms may include swollen tonsils, difficulty swallowing, fever, bad breath, and redness or white spots on the back surface of the throat. In order to treat tonsillitis, antibiotics are usually prescribed; therefore, make sure you make an appointment with your primary care physician if your symptoms persist.
Acid Reflux Disease (GERD)
GERD is a chronic condition characterized by excess stomach acid flowing back up into the esophagus and throat. Common symptoms include a sore throat, hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, or burning in the throat area.
Treatment includes medicine to reduce stomach acid levels and lifestyle changes such as avoiding acidic foods, eating smaller meals more frequently instead of large meals, and not eating late at night before bedtime.
Mono is an infectious disease caused by the Epstein-Barr virus that usually affects young adults. Symptoms may include fever, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes in the neck area, sore throat with white patches, and even a rash.
Treatment includes rest, fluids, medications for fever and pain relief, and avoiding activities that require physical exertion. Medical attention should be sought if symptoms do not subside within a few weeks.
Throat cancer, also known as laryngeal or pharyngeal cancer, is a rare but serious condition. Symptoms may include a persistent sore throat or hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, and a lump in your neck.
Treatment for throat cancer typically includes surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. It is important to seek medical attention immediately if any of these symptoms are present.
These are just some of the common throat illnesses that many people suffer from every day. If you have any of these symptoms or think you might be suffering from one of these illnesses, make sure to contact your primary care physician as soon as possible so they can evaluate and diagnose your condition. As with any illness, early detection is key to a successful treatment plan!
If you are in need of help with treating a throat illness, then PCP For Life is here to help. To learn more about how we can assist you or schedule an appointment, call us today at 281-968-4096.