You might be familiar with Murphy’s Law: if something can go wrong, it will.
That might sound a bit pessimistic. I don’t see it that way.
To my mind, Murphy’s Law is not about pessimism, but preparedness: be ready for anything. Going camping? Don’t leave your rain jacket at home. Think you’ll get all your Christmas shopping done on December 24? Reconsider (my apologies if that touches a nerve!).
I propose another, similar law. I call it the Sore Throat Law: if you have an important event coming up, expect a sore throat. A well-earned holiday? A sibling’s birthday dinner? Your best friend’s wedding? Your wedding? You can almost guarantee that a sore throat is lurking just around the corner. It’s like it has access to your calendar. And before you even have time to type chemist online Australia into your search engine, the sore throat has struck.
Perhaps I’m being a bit extreme. Fair enough. But the reality is that sore throats aren’t pleasant, whenever they show up.
What causes a sore throat?
Remember when we went through the superhero origin craze? It felt like every other movie being churned out by the Hollywood machine was about the early days of Wolverine or Superman or Wonderwoman.
I think we like those stories because we understand that our origins give shape to our experiences. So what is the origin story of a sore throat? The truth is, there isn’t just one origin story: there are many. This is because there are many different causes of a sore throat:
A virus is the most common cause of a sore throat. The common cold is a repeat offender, which explains why your sore throat usually shows up with other unwelcome guests. By the time you reach for the Betadine sore throat gargle, you may find yourself experiencing a myriad of other symptoms.
Sore throats can also be caused by other viruses like glandular fever or COVID-19. These require more intense medical intervention. While a chemist online Australia can play a supporting role, you should speak to your doctor about this and follow your state’s health guidelines.
Around 30% of viruses are caused by bacterial infections. Sore throats caused by Streptococcus pyogenes – strep throat – can be extremely uncomfortable and may be accompanied by a raft of other symptoms, so speak to your GP about appropriate treatment. These symptoms may include:
- Painful tonsils
- Fever, chills, and fatigue
- Appetite loss
Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics to treat a bacterial infection. Remember though that antibiotics are a specialised medication and are not effective against sore throats caused by viruses. The good news is that as a chemist online Australia, we can help you get the prescriptions you need in the time frame that you need them.
Tonsilitis and other causes
In some cases, your sore throat may be a result of tonsilitis. If your tonsils are swollen, seek medical assistance and appropriate support.
According to Health Direct, you should seek medical attention if ‘you have trouble breathing or swallowing (or if your baby is drooling), you have a stiff or swollen neck, you have a high fever, you have a rash, [and/or] you feel very unwell or the sore throat is getting worse.’
You should also seek medical attention if your sore throat persists for more than a few days, if you are worried about your symptoms, or if you have underlying health conditions.
All that said, the good news is that most sore throats are generally easy to treat. While there isn’t a ‘cure’ for a sore throat, you can ease your discomfort and put yourself on the path to recovery with a gentle regime of self-care, effective home remedies, and over-the-counter medication available at your local pharmacy or a chemist online Australia.
You should consider:
- Prioritising rest and recovery. This is really the key. As sore throats are often caused by viruses, you need to spend some downtime to speed up your recovery time. We need to remind ourselves when we are unwell of a counterintuitive but important truth: the way to fast-track our recovery is to slow down our lives. Take a break, lie down, get plenty of sleep and rest, and perhaps clear out your calendar. Give yourself room to recover.
- Keep your room at a comfortable temperature with plenty of fresh air. I know that this sounds obvious, but sometimes the obvious things are the ones that we tend to miss. Moving from a stuffy, stale room to a breezy and comfortable space could make the world of difference.
- Avoid food that is difficult to eat. This is another one that feels like it goes without saying, but I’m always amazed at how many people miss this. Indulge yourself a little: eat ice cream, jelly, mousse, and other foods that don’t cause excessive discomfort.
- Saying yes to chicken soup. Some home remedies are – how I can put this politely? – a little questionable (to be honest, some are absolute garbage). But, believe it or not, t chicken soup really can be helpful: it encourages mucous development (perhaps that’s a little bit disgusting to think about) which can aid in the recovery process. And it tastes great.
- Brewing yourself a honey and lemon tea. It’s a simple equation: Hot water + honey + lemon = a good choice. Studies show that honey can help to suppress coughing and ease a sore throat. Hot drinks also ‘help to lubricate a sore throat and soothe the pain.’ That explains the honey and the hot water, but why the lemon? In the past, people believed that the vitamin C in lemons could reduce the length of colds, and therefore the length of a sore throat. The scientific community isn’t convinced of this anymore, but the lemon makes for a soothing flavour that may help you to relax and rest.
- Using over-the-counter medicine to aid your recovery. Products like Betadine gargle and a range of lozenges may be appropriate for you. The best thing about a chemist online Australia is that you can order from the comfort of your own home. Remember to use only as directed.
So, returning to my idea of the Sore Throat Law. Yes, a sore throat may emerge exactly when you least want it. But, as with Murphy’s Law, this shouldn’t lead you to pessimism. It should lead you to be prepared.