For a day or two, a sore throat usually isn’t overly concerning. But if you keep waking up with that same telltale discomfort, you might be wondering what to do.
A lot of sore throats heal on their own — but not all of them. To help you determine if you should seek medical care, our sore throat specialists have created this guide. You can use it to decide whether it’s time to visit either of our SmartClinic Urgent Care clinics in West Covina and Santa Clarita, California.
Ultimately, your sore throat’s ability to heal on its own comes down to what’s causing it.
If you’re dealing with a viral infection like a cold or the flu, your sore throat lasts as long as it takes the infection to run its course. In most cases, that’s anywhere from a few days to a little more than a week.
If your sore throat and the other symptoms you’re experiencing are manageable, you can stay home and wait for the virus to pass. Drink plenty of fluids, and get lots of rest.
While many sore throats come from viruses, other health conditions also can be to blame. If you have bacterial infection, like strep throat, symptoms generally don’t go away until you treat the underlying condition. Fortunately, with a prescribed antibiotic, you should feel better in a few days.
Similarly, you might get a sore throat because of another health condition, such as allergies or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). In those cases, your sore throat usually doesn’t disappear until you treat the issue causing it.
Ultimately, because many sore throats are caused by viral infections, they often go away on their own. If you have the option to stay home for about a week to wait it out, you can see if your throat heals naturally.
If you need to get back to work or school, though, seeing a doctor for treatment can help you feel better — and get rid of anything contagious — sooner. Here at SmartClinic Urgent Care, we can diagnose the root cause of your sore throat and apply treatment to help speed your road to recovery.
For sore throat treatment and all of your other urgent care needs, you can either walk into a SmartClinic Urgent Care clinic or call ahead to make an appointment. You can also schedule a virtual visit online.