Do you Know the Signs of Strep Throat?

November 12, 2012

Do you Know the Signs of Strep Throat?

How do you know if you have the Signs of Strep Throat? Do you have a sore throat and difficulty swallowing. That in itself could mean you have a cold or perhaps coming down with the flu. Perhaps you have swollen lymph nodes. Well, these are all Signs of Strep Throat as well.

Strep throat is caused by the bacterium known as Streptococcus. This throat condition is highly contagious and can be passed from one family member to another quickly. Once you cough the bacteria goes airborne and can infect someone close by. It is important to get medical attention as soon as possible and get a proper diagnosis as strep throat can turn into rheumatic fever and possibly generate glomerulonephritis (inflammation of the kidney tubules). The incubation period for strep throat runs between two and five days after you come in contact with it. If you are unaware that you have been exposed, the symptoms may sprout out of nowhere. Listed below are the Signs of Strep Throat you need to look for.

  • Beginnings of a sore throat

  • Sudden fever with sweating alternating with chills

  • Lymph nodes in the neck become enlarged

  • Difficulty swallowing

  • Throat becomes red and may develop white or yellow patchy areas

  • Body aches and pains and possible headache

  • Dizziness, nausea or vomiting

  • Loss of appetite, food tastes strange

  • Rashes, although rare that resemble a scarlet fever rash (scarlet fever is a strep infection)

Still the question remains. Do you have Strep Throat? Only the doctor can really tell. The Signs of Strep Throat can run the gamut from mild to severe but generally the throat is very sore and that makes it difficult to swallow. Generally speaking, most people can’t deal with the problem for long before they want to seek out medical attention. Most sore throats are actually caused by a viral infection and not a bacterial infection (Strep infection). So is there a way to tell the difference. Somewhat. Generally, a cold or flu can have a sore throat but they also have coughing, sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion and possible lung congestion. The Signs of Strep Throat do not include the nasal and/or lung symptoms. That’s a major clue there. Your doctor can do a throat swab and grow a culture to identify the culprit.

If you go to the doctor chances are he/she will do a strep test depending on the symptoms you present. There are 2 strep tests that can be administered. One is a rapid strep test which is used to check if you have the condition to begin with. If the physician is not satisfied with the results he/she may want to swab your throat and grow a culture. This usually takes about 3 days to get results. Once you are diagnosed treatment can begin.

Believe it or not, Signs of Strep Throat generally resolve themselves, treatment is often done to mask the symptoms whether he/she uses antibiotics or natural remedies. If you and your doctor decide to go home remedy path, you will need to drink lots of warm liquids such as tea, gargle with salt water a minimum of 3 times a day, take some form of pain reliever, and use throat lozenges. On the other hand, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics such as penicillin or amoxicillin. More often than not, antibiotics are given to keep you from being contagious so it won’t spread. This usually takes about two days after you start taking the antibiotics.

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