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Learn how to soothe a sore throat

When your throat is hurting, here's what may help.

6 soothers for a tender throat

Ice it. Suck on ice chips or an ice pop.

Gargle salt water. Stir 1 teaspoon of salt in 1 cup of water.

Drink more liquids. Include warm (not hot) beverages, such as cocoa or tea with honey. (Don't give honey to babies younger than 12 months).

Consider over-the-counter relief. Options include acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain. Read labels carefully before giving medicine to children. And never give aspirin to children.

Keep a humidifier in the room. This will moisten the air that enters your throat.

Antibiotics? Usually not. That's because viruses, not bacteria, cause most sore throats. One exception is strep throat.

Sources: American Academy of Family PhysiciansCenters for Disease Control and Prevention

Talk to your doctor if you have questions about soothing a sore throat.

Reviewed 12/3/2021

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The information found in the Health Library is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice nor does it represent the views or position of WHMC. Readers should always consult with their healthcare provider for diagnosis and treatment, including for specific medical needs.