It’s probably safe to say that many of us had strep throat several times when we were growing up. While strep throat is most common among children between the ages of 5 and 15, it can affect children and adults of all ages, and it can be a severe infection when left untreated

So, what should you do if you do come down with this common infection? Our team at AFC Urgent Care Knoxville has some answers, so read on.

First, How Do I Know If I Have Strep Throat?

Before we explain its first symptoms, it’s important to know exactly what strep throat actually is. Strep throat is a bacterial infection that is caused by group A Streptococcus bacteria, which causes throat pain and inflammation.

While the overall symptoms of strep throat vary a little bit, the first symptoms typically remain consistent. In many cases, the first symptoms of this infection are a sore throat, difficulty swallowing and a fever. We’ve listed some more common symptoms of strep throat below.

Common Strep Throat Symptoms

  • Sore, red throat with white patches
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Loss of appetite
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • Trouble swallowing

How Can I Treat It?

If you experience any of the symptoms that we’ve mentioned previously, it’s important to go see your doctor within the next 48 hours to reduce the risk of complications caused by strep throat.

If your doctor believes that you have strep throat, he or she will likely perform a rapid strep test to confirm the diagnosis. If it comes back positive, your doctor will most likely prescribe antibiotics because strep throat is a bacterial infection. However, there are things you can do at home to help yourself feel better! We’ve listed some effective remedies below.

At-Home Remedies for Strep Throat

  • Drinking warm liquids, such as lemon water and tea
  • Drinking cold liquids to help numb the throat
  • Taking over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen
  • Sucking on throat lozenges
  • Adding 12 teaspoon of salt to 1 cup of water and gargling the mixture

Do you feel like you might have strep throat? If so, don’t hesitate to visit us at AFC Urgent Care Knoxville! We’re here for you now and always.