Commonly Asked Questions About Strep Throat
March 24, 2020
March 24, 2020
What Causes Strep Throat?
Throat pain is something that all of us would prefer to avoid. If you are a parent, then you would gladly eliminate the possibility of your child ever having to contend with the discomfort of a strep throat, along with symptoms that accompany the condition. But unfortunately, this health issue can develop despite our desire to avoid it.
Strep throat occurs as the result of a bacterial infection that is referred to as streptococcus. This is very different than the cause of a sore throat, which develops as a result of viruses. You can become infected with a strep throat if you are exposed to the bacteria through a cough or sneeze by someone who is already contending with a strep throat.
The bacteria can also be transferred on objects such as a faucet or a door handle. This is particularly true if you make contact with your mouth, nose or eyes after this has occurred.
The U.S. Centers For Disease Control And Prevention (CDC) has stated that between 11,000-24,000 cases of streptococcus – which is also referred to as Group A strep disease – will develop in the U.S. on an annual basis.
Yet, a number of questions remain common for parents and potential patients who are often unsure whether the symptoms that they might be experiencing are the result of a strep throat or a sore throat. It can also be extremely beneficial to review which symptoms will make it critical to seek immediate medical care for you or your child if it appears that strep throat is present.
Symptoms Of A Strep Throat
This bacterial infection will normally emerge in the form of scratchiness or discomfort in the throat. Pain during your attempts to swallow also indicates the presence of a strep throat, as do tonsils that are red or swollen. In some cases, small red spots might be located near the back of the mouth. Headaches, body aches, fever, nausea, and vomiting are also symptoms of a strep throat.
How To Know If It Is A Strep Throat Or A Sore Throat
A strep throat is most likely to develop in children and adolescents between the ages of 5 and 15, even though it is possible for an adult to incur this condition.
A sore throat will develop as the result of a virus that manifests itself in the form of a cold or the flu. Symptoms such as a runny nose, a cough. or hoarseness will usually indicate that an individual is experiencing a sore throat as opposed to a strep throat.
Since a sore throat is not caused by bacteria, most individuals who encounter this illness will not receive antibiotics from their physician.
How To Reduce The Risk Experiencing A Strep Throat
Fortunately, there are precautions that you could take that will reduce the chances of contending with this bacterial infection. First, it is extremely beneficial to wash your hands frequently. It is also important for you or your child to cover the mouth and nose whenever coughing or sneezing is taking place.
Anyone with a strep throat should not use the same food utensils or glasses as other people who are around them. If you have already developed a strep throat it is also important that you remain home, rather than risk infecting coworkers or other individuals for a period of at least 24 hours. This principle also applies to your child, as he or she should not place classmates at risk of exposure for a minimum of 24 hours.
When To Visit A Physician
If you or your child are dealing with pain in the throat that has remained for at least 48 hours, then it is recommended that you visit a doctor. This is also the case for any swollen glands that develop while throat pain exists, along with any presence of a fever.
Anyone who is having difficulty breathing or swallowing or is experiencing joint pain should also visit a physician. This is also the case if you are dealing with dehydration. If your child is drooling or develops a rash, it is also important to visit a doctor.
What A Doctor Will Do
When you visit a physician he or she will ask multiple questions that will be important in determining whether or not you have a strep throat. This includes the specific symptoms that you or your child are experiencing along with your medical history and the history of your family members.
However, that information alone will not enable your doctor to provide an official diagnosis. Because it is necessary for your physician to swab your throat in order to properly determine whether the bacteria that triggers strep throat is present.
If the swab indicates that a strep throat is the cause of discomfort then your physician will prescribe antibiotics. The medication will be designed to diminish the symptoms in the throat and decrease the amount of time that the bacteria remains problematic. This will also safeguard other family members from encountering the condition.
Many cases of strep throat can be treated successfully within 10 days, and it is possible that the condition will improve noticeably within several days. However, it is essential that you or your child continue taking the prescribed antibiotics even if the symptoms of strep throat improve. Otherwise, you will create the possibility of bacterial infection reemerging, which will result in a return of the original symptoms.
It is also helpful to keep yourself hydrated when you are dealing with a throat issue. This can be accomplished by sipping warm liquids such as herbal tea, broth, or soup. Water with lemon can also be effective. However, the caffeine that is contained in coffee could actually increase any dehydration, which makes it wise to drink other liquids.
At Rapid Med Urgent Care We Can Help
If you have any questions or concerns about strep throat, a sore throat, or any other health issues that you may be facing, do not hesitate to contact us at Rapid Med Urgent Care Center. Not only do we offer immediate medical attention for conditions that are not critical or life-threatening with our Rapid Med Urgent Care Center service, but we also provide both primary and preventive care.
Our Primary Care
- After Hours Care Available
- Continuity of Care
- Health Maintenance
- Patient Education
Our Preventative Care
- Alcohol Misuse Screening & Counseling
- Atherosclerosis Risk Factor Modification
- Blood Pressure Screening
- Cancer Screening
- Cholesterol Screening
- Depression Screening
- HIV-STD Screening
- Obesity Screening & Counseling
- Type 2 Diabetes Screening
- Weight Management
- Wellness Exams
We understand that you are extremely busy, which is why we also providing you with the option of signing in online so that you will not need to wait when you arrive at either of our facilities.
In addition to visiting us at either location, you can receive the same great care and consideration by using our On-Demand service through your phone, tablet, or computer.
Our Urgent Care
- Allergies and Rashes
- Bronchitis and Pneumonia
- Evaluation of Acute Abdominal Pain
- Evaluation of Most Chest Pain
- Fevers – Down to 4 Months of Age
- Gastrointestinal Infections w/ Nausea & Vomiting
- Headaches and Migraines
- On-Site Ultrasound Diagnostics
- On-Site X-Rays
- Simple Gynecologic Problems
- Sinus Infections
- Skin Infections and Abscesses
- Sore Throats and Strep
- Urinary Tract Infections