main of Sufferers of Strep Throat Know How Troubling It Can Be

It’s safe to say that no one enjoys having strep throat. In fact, severe strep throat symptoms can be so unbearable, they negatively impact the sufferer's ability to complete their day-to-day routine. Streptococcus, commonly referred to as strep throat, is a bacterial infection. Group A strep bacteria lives in the nose and throat. Once this bacteria becomes infected, it causes throat inflammation and pain. Although it’s most common in children, strep throat can impact people of all ages. Children between the ages of five and 15 are most vulnerable to developing strep throat.

Many people mistake strep for a typical sore throat. Not only is strep more dangerous, it’s highly contagious. Since children are more likely to get strep throat, they’re most likely to infect their peers. With nearly a half million annual strep-related deaths in the US alone, it’s important to understand the severity of this illness, how it’s contracted, what the symptoms are, and of course, how to treat it.

The 5 Important Questions About Strep Throat

1: What Are the Most Common Ways to Contract Strep Throat?

A: Bacterial droplets with the infection can make someone sick as soon as they leave the infected person’s body. Something as simple as a sneeze or cough are enough to spread strep throat. If a person comes in contact with an area that’s been exposed to this bacteria and touches their eyes, nose, or mouth can also contract strep throat.

Another common way to contract strep throat is eating or drinking after a sick person or kissing them. Therefore, it’s best to avoid contact with sick people as often as possible to prevent spreading.

2: What are the Symptoms of Strep Throat?

A: In most cases, strep throat is considered a mild condition. However, this infection can be extremely painful. Before a medical diagnosis, there are some common symptoms of strep throat, including:

  • Swelling of the tonsils, often with pus-filled pockets
  • Fever
  • Red spots on the hard and/or soft palate
  • Lymph node swelling in the neck
  • Difficulty and pain when swallowing
  • Sudden sore throat

Some patients experience stomach discomfort and even vomiting. These symptoms are more common in children. It’s also normal for children to develop scarlet fever. Scarlet fever is an illness that shows up within the first five days of contracting strep throat. In addition to a fever, scarlet fever causes a bright red rash all over the body.

3:How Can I Treat The Symptoms of Strep Throat? 

A: After a positive strep throat diagnosis, there are a number of ways to minimize symptoms and heal. Since strep throat is a bacterial infection, doctors typically prescribe antibiotics. Depending on allergies, some of the standard and common antibiotics will probably be the first option. Otherwise, they recommend other forms of antibiotics to effectively expedite the healing process. For patients that are considered carriers, doctors won’t prescribe antibiotics because they don’t have symptoms. It’s also less likely for these people to be contagious. In these cases, speaking to a healthcare provider for a viable solution is the best gesture.

4: Is Strep Throat Worse for pregnant women?

A: Usually, pregnant women have intensified symptoms with any illness. Even if the symptoms are more strenuous during pregnancy, strep throat doesn’t pose a large threat to her or the baby. However, it’s best to seek professional care as soon as symptoms arise to avoid complications. Unless the pregnancy is high-risk or the mother has antibiotic-related allergies, they’re often treated with antibiotics, which doesn’t negatively impact the baby in-utero.

5: How often does strep occur?

A: Unfortunately, people don’t gain immunity from strep throat after contracting it the first time. In fact, if the antibiotics are unsuccessful, strep throat symptoms can linger or return after some time. Larger families are more vulnerable to recurring strep throat symptoms because they pass it to each other in a cycle. People who experience strep throat more than seven times a year should consider a tonsillectomy, which is a surgical removal of the tonsils. Strep throat symptoms are difficult. Taking proper precautions reduces discomfort and the amount of infection cases.