Sore Throat and Earache: Causes and Natural Treatments
A sore throat and earache happen at the same time due to the infection that starts in the ear and spread to the throat or vice-versa.
The infection can easily travel due to the Eustachian tube that connects ear and throat. The pain from a sore throat and earache is a common condition that interferes with your day-to-day activities. This article states the most common causes and natural remedies for earache and sore throat.
What Causes a Sore Throat and Earache?
A sore throat and earache are associated with many health conditions and infections. The severity of this condition can range from mild to severe. The symptoms can affect vital tasks, such as breathing, swallowing, and hearing.
Here is a list of common causes along with their common treatments and other symptoms.
1. Cold or Flu
A sore throat and earache are common during seasonal changes and the winter months. These two symptoms resolve in a matter of days. Rest and hot liquids, such as tea and soup, are recommended until the virus passes. Antibiotics and medical attention might be necessary for repeat colds and flu.
2. Ear Infection
Ear infections happen from colds or infected middle ear, which comes with a lot of pain and agony. The pain travels to the throat. The pain is from pressure on the sensory nerve endings. Other symptoms of an ear infection are
- Loss of balance
- Loss of appetite
- Hearing loss
- Discharge drainage from the ear
Rest, heat application to ear, antibiotic drops, and medicine are common treatments.
3. Hay Fever
An itchy, sore throat and earache are the body’s responses to allergens of pollen, dust, and dander. These can happen at the same time with hay fever as a result of sinus pressure. Other symptoms include the following:
- A cough
- Sinus pain
- Running nose
For relief, stay away from the allergen and take an antihistamine. Other treatments include leukotriene modifier and nasal ipratropium.
A sore throat and ear pain is a result from inflamed tonsils due to a bacterial or viral infection. In immune compromised individuals, it can also be caused by fungal agents. Other symptoms of tonsillitis are:
- Difficulty swallowing
- Difficulty breathing and sleeping
Some common treatments for tonsillitis include rest, gargle, and antibiotics.
5. Acute Sinusitis
A sore throat and earache are common symptoms of acute sinusitis. Acute sinusitis is an inflammation of the air spaces near the nostrils.
Colds and allergies often cause this infection. A severe headache, fever, and discharge from nostrils are other symptoms of this infection. There are a few treatments for acute sinusitis. Nasal decongestants, corticosteroid, and saline nasal sprays are a couple of examples.
6. Larynx Cancer
Earache, sore throat, persistent cough, and difficulty breathing are symptoms of larynx cancer. Surgery, chemotherapy and radiation are treatments of larynx cancer. Though, treatment depends on its developmental stage.
7. Other Causes:
There are other less severe causes of a sore throat and earache. Those causes are the following:
- Excessive alcohol intake
- Overuse of vocal chords (talking, singing, yelling, etc.)
- Eating very hot or cold foods
Health Complications Associated with Sore Throat and Earache
There are health and medical factors that could complicate an earache and sore throat. Those factors are listed below:
- Spread of infection to other areas through abscess
- Ruptured eardrum, mastoiditis, and long-term hearing loss
- Untreated strep throat that could lead to other infections and damages to the body
- Bacterial infections that turn into a rheumatic fever
Sore Throat and Earache: Natural Remedies
There are many natural remedies to try for a sore throat and earache. These natural remedies should not yield side effects. The remedies listed below have promising results.
Garlic can be used as an antiviral and anti-fungal medicine back in the old days. Add two cloves of garlic in the soup to get rid of a sore throat. For earaches, make a heated mixture of half clove of garlic and sesame oil. The last step is to drop the mixture in each ear after 10 minutes.
It is an effective treatment for a sore throat and earache. Make the massage oil with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of sandalwood or thyme oil. The next step after making the oil is to massage the oil around the neck area for a sore throat. Then, cover the neck with a scarf. To relieve an earache using massage, wrap a towel dipped in hot water around the head covering the ears.
Gargle can help ease the symptoms of a sore throat and earache. There are 2 types of gargles that work. The most common one is the saline gargle. Use the saline gargle every 30 minutes. Make the second type of gargle by mixing a dash of cayenne pepper with 1 cup of water and 2 teaspoons of apple cider. Both cayenne and apple cider have antiviral properties. Use this gargle every 15 minutes for best results.
4. Hot Liquids
Hot liquids soothe sore throats. Warm water can work by itself. The option using hot tea and hot tea with lemon and honey is as effective as warm water also.
Also known as a natural painkiller, ginger has been used since ancient times to cure a plethora of aches and pains. Add ginger to tea or warm water.
When to See a Doctor?
Most of the time a sore throat and earache can be resolved using an over-the-counter medicine or natural remedy. If a sore throat and earache last more than two days, that is a decent indicator to seek medical attention. Also, the factors and conditions listed below are other indicators on when to see a doctor.
- A fever 100.4+ degrees
- Stiff neck and back
- Blood in saliva or phlegm
- Swollen lymph glands and nodes
- Hard to swallow anything for more than 3 days
- Pus in back of throat
- Contact with strep throat
- Excessive drooling in children
- Pus and rash on toenails