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Pharyngitis: what it is, what the symptoms are and how to treat it


pharyngitis

Pharyngitis is the technical term for the common sore throat. Let's find out better what it is and how to recognize it.

When we talk about pharyngitis, we mean the inflammation that can occasionally affect the mucous membrane that lines the pharynx. Usually common in winter, it can also occur in spring due to the change of season. When it occurs, it can affect both adults and children and in most cases due to a respiratory tract infection. The extent of pharyngitis can vary from case to case and according to the cause. And this leads to different treatment modalities which will be decided by the attending physician.

How to recognize pharyngitis

When it arrives, pharyngitis can do so in two different forms which are acute (therefore with a rapid course) or chronic (which lasts longer over time). The former almost always depends on bacteria and can also lead to problems with the tonsils , while in other cases it can be a real inflammation.
The second, however, is often linked to diseases of other organs.

pharyngitis
pharyngitis

Among the most common symptoms of pharyngitis, regardless of its form, are:

– Pain when swallowing
– Itchy throat
– Sensation of a foreign body in the throat
– Cough
– Dry throat
– Redness of the mucous membrane
– Presence of phlegm
– Aphonia (lack of voice)
– Swollen neck lymph nodes
– Pain in the ears
Fever

In the presence of a sore throat , associated with one or more symptoms, it is therefore very important to consult a doctor in order to have a diagnosis and the right treatment.

Diagnosis and treatment of pharyngitis

When in doubt that you have pharyngitis in progress, as already mentioned, it is very important to ask your doctor for advice. These usually make an initial visit to the throat to assess the condition and the presence of plaques or other problems.

Depending on the type of history , the doctor can then arrange further analyzes or treat pharyngitis with suitable drugs. In general, the suspicion of the presence of streptococcus may arise, which is why it may, for example, require a specific swab. If, on the other hand, the suspicion is that of chronic pharyngitis, an oral video endoscopy can be requested to understand the possible causes.

As regards the treatment, therefore, this is almost always of the antibiotic type for the acute one. The chronic one, on the other hand, can be due to other problems such as, for example, gastroesophageal reflux , alcohol abuse, smoking, pollution and the inhalation of irritating substances.
To limit the symptoms, specific mouthwashes, anti-inflammatory drugs or over-the-counter pain relievers can be used. It is also recommended to drink a lot, avoid alcohol and smoking and always protect your throat.

Finally, it can be useful to take care of the environment in which you live in order to make it as suitable as possible for the health of the throat (and not only). Among the rules to follow are that of always humidifying the rooms, airing the house and washing your hands often with soap and water. All rules that fall within those to avoid the flu and, specifically, viral infections of the throat.


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