Sore Throat Specialist
The most common cause of a sore throat is a viral infection like the flu, that usually resolves on its own. But, when a sore throat doesn’t go away, you may have an infection, such as strep throat, that needs antibiotics. The team of skilled physicians at Warner Plaza Urgent Care in Woodland Hills, California, provides on-site testing to determine the cause of your sore throat so you can get prompt, effective relief. Call the office, walk in, or schedule the next available appointment using the online booking tool.
Sore Throat Q & A
What causes a sore throat?
There are several reasons for that scratchy, irritated, painful feeling in the back of your throat when you swallow, but the most common cause is a viral infection. When you have the flu or a cold, your throat often becomes sore and painful when you swallow. In addition to a cold or flu, other common viral illnesses that cause a sore throat include:
- Mononucleosis (mono)
As your cold or virus goes away, typically your sore throat does, too. However, when your sore throat lingers or becomes worse, it could be the sign of strep throat, a streptococcal infection, that comes from bacteria. If that’s the case, you need antibiotics to treat it effectively and avoid further complications.
Other causes of a sore throat include:
- Smoke and other air pollutants
- GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease)
- Dry air
- Weakened immune system
Age is also a factor, as children tend to get more sore throats than adults.
How can I tell if my sore throat is a viral or bacterial infection?
Only a physician can determine if your sore throat is a viral or bacterial infection. When you come to the clinic with a sore throat, the doctors at Warner Plaza Urgent Care rub a sterile swab over the back of your throat to get a sample so they can test it and determine the cause.
They offer on-site rapid strep throat and mono testing so you will know the results within a few minutes. If the rapid test comes back positive, you have a bacterial infection, but if the test is negative, you have a viral infection.
What is the treatment for a sore throat?
The treatment for your sore throat depends on the cause. If it’s a viral infection, it usually clears up on its own in 5-7 days, although over-the-counter pain relievers can help relieve symptoms. When your sore throat is the result of bacterial infections, your provider writes a prescription that will combat the infection and relieve symptoms. Sometimes, your symptoms will dissipate before the infection is completely out of your system, so it’s important to take the entire dose of antibiotics to ensure that you completely eliminate strep throat or mono.
If you or your child has a sore throat that lasts longer than a few days, or is severe, the doctors at Warner Plaza Urgent Care can diagnose the cause and provide prompt treatment. Come in, call, or schedule the next available appointment using the online system.
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