Just what is strep throat? Most people are familiar with a sore throat, but not with this kind of bacterial infection. In this article, you are going to know not just strep throat signs and symptoms, but what does strep throat look like. You might assume that what you have is an ordinary sore throat only when it fact it is more than that. So it is necessary to be able to spot the differences between the two.
Strep throat is a kind of sore throat that is usually accompanied by high fever. If you notice white patches, dark and red spots on the tonsils, then most probably, you have a strep throat. These are the common symptoms of strep throat that you might probably have overlooked. Bear in mind that these two bacterial infections are of two different things. So it is a must that you have the idea to identify strep throat signs.
Do you know that you could catch a strep throat without a sore throat? While it is a piece of common knowledge that a sore throat would normally fade away on their own even without antibiotics, strep throat treatment is administered with antibiotics, either taken as pills or given by a shot.
Now the question is, “Is strep throat contagious?” The answer is yes. Once you get infected, you normally start to manifest signs for about 2 to 6 days. The contagious period could last up to a month if not treated properly. Taking antibiotics such as penicillin or amoxicillin will prevent the spread of this virus, but it is far better to consult a doctor once symptoms begin to show.
To avoid being caught by this contagious bacteria, here are some of the helpful tips
- Avoid kissing someone who has a strep throat, since it would certainly be easy to pass the virus through kissing.
- Avoid sharing personal items such as forks and spoons, plates, glass, and toothbrushes.
- When someone who has the infection coughs or sneezes, avoid touching the items or things nearby. Droplets with bacteria are just sprayed in the air and may land on doorknobs, tables, and other items. You might accidentally touch these droplets and rub your eyes, nose, or mouth. In that way, the bacterial properties of strep throat could be transmitted to you easily.
- Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly, especially before eating.
- Don’t touch tissues being used by a person who has a strep throat.
- Wash the dishes, forks, and spoons, plates, drinking glasses in soapy and hot water.
How long does strep throat last?
You might be worrying that your strep throat would not go away for the next few weeks, or you might think that it will stay with for a month. The good news is, once treated properly and promptly, strep throat usually lasts for about 10 days in adults. Children will start to feel better for a day or two after the treatment. And once you’ve started taking antibiotics, you stop being contagious within 24 hours. And never worry that your dog might catch the bacteria! It is not spread between animals and human beings.
Is it possible that you can still catch strep throat without tonsils?
Let’s go-to basic. Look at the mirror, do you noticed the two soft tissues in the back of your throat? They are called tonsils. They serve as your first line of defense against bacteria and viruses that can cause throat and lung infections.
But what is the main reason why your doctor suggested that your tonsils should be removed? If you regularly get it, since it will greatly reduce the number of cases in getting this viral infection. However, it is not a guarantee that you are going to be forever unsusceptible to strep throat, although the chances of getting this throat infection would be decreased.
You can still develop the following symptoms:
- Light to severe headaches
- Skin rashes
- Stomachache or nausea sometimes may result in vomiting
- Severe pain in swallowing solid food and liquid
- Red and white color patches inside your throat
The symptoms above usually occur within three days. The only significant thing is the fact that you won’t have swollen tonsils. Other than that, you still can acquire those indications that were mentioned.
The best thing to do is to visit your doctor when your sore throat seems to persist for more than 3 days. He will make the necessary diagnosis by looking for signs of bacterial infection. Your doctor may conduct a rapid strep test to determine the severity of the bacterial infection.
If a strep throat is confirmed, your doctor will administer an antibiotic either by pill or a shot. It kills the bacteria and thus, preventing it from spreading further. Take note that not all sore throats are to be considered as strep throats. Antibiotics can’t kill viruses from sore throats. Your doctor still has the final test and diagnosis for strep throat.
Just remember that the bacteria associated with strep throats can be easily transmitted by person to person contact. It is moderately contagious, so it is better if you have a basic understanding of this kind of disease.
To help you feel better when suffering from, you can do the following:
- If you are an adult, you can either take ibuprofen or acetaminophen as a pain reliever and reduce your fever at the same time.
- Gargling with warm water (put ¼ teaspoon of salt in it) would make you feel better as well.
- Get enough rest
- To avoid dehydration, drink plenty of water
- Spicy foods can irritate your throat, so better avoid them.
Those are just a few of other do-it-yourself remedies to ease the pain and relieve swelling. But the best thing to do is to be fully aware of the dos and don’ts of this bacterial infection. It would certainly save your day and save money in your pocket, too.