Pharyngitis & Laryngitis: Common sore throat
What are the differences between the two?
There are several conditions that cause throat problems. Laryngitis and pharyngitis are very popular at this level. These are two infections that look very similar and are often confused.
Laryngitis is located deeper in the throat, near the larynx. Pharyngitis is rather located at the back of the mouth, at the entrance to the throat located at the pharynx.
Often both infections go away after a few days, but sometimes there are complications that can be very serious.
The first symptoms of sore throat
The first sign of pharyngitis is inflammation of the pharynx, located in the throat. The symptoms for laryngitis are practically the same. Discomfort or burning sensation in the throat, nose, and esophagus.
The pharynx is used to pass food between the mouth and the esophagus (swallowing). Pharyngitis is often painful for the patient, as he feels a burning sensation in the throat, nose, and pharynx.
Sometimes pharyngitis will alternate the sounds produced by the vocal cords. Also, call phonation. So if you suddenly lose your voice, you may have pharyngitis.
This infection is caused mainly by bacteria or viruses. In 90% of cases, pharyngitis is said to be viral (virus), so antibiotics are of no use. Only rest and good hydration can help quickly cure viral pharyngitis.
What is rhino-pharyngitis?
When pharyngitis attacks the nasal mucosa, we say nasopharyngitis. The nose may run or be completely blocked. The signs of nasopharyngitis are very close to a simple cold or flu.
Types of Pharyngitis
There are two types, infectious and non-infectious pharyngitis. For the infectious type, they are caused by viruses or bacteria. For non-infectious pharyngitis, we speak rather of a foreign body which causes inflammation of the pharynx.
Certain allergens such as pollution, cigarette smoke and pollen are the main causes of non-infectious pharyngitis. This is why doctors strongly recommend reducing or quitting smoking if you have pharyngitis, laryngitis or bronchitis.
Other types of exposure may also be involved, we are talking about dust or abuse of nose drops here. Certain professions such as singers and lecturers are more prone to catch chronic pharyngitis.
Often pharyngitis will heal on its own after a while. In some cases, you will need to see a general practitioner to receive treatment.
How to diagnose viral or bacterial pharyngitis?
A single appointment with your doctor is enough to establish a diagnosis. An inspection of the throat and palpitation of the neck are the main signs of infection. The patient with pharyngitis will often have inflammation and reddish signs in the throat.
The second factor that the doctor will have to observe is the size of the lymph nodes in the stroke.
Rarely, an analysis of the secretion of the tonsils will be taken to detect any sign of streptococci.
What are the symptoms of pharyngitis or laryngitis?
- The symptoms of pharyngitis are very similar to those of a cold (cough, runny nose, a feeling of weakness, congestion, headache, etc.)
- Pharynx irritation
- General symptoms of a cold or flu
- Sore throat and tenderness
- A fever that returns often
- Swelling of the tonsils
For less common symptoms, they are:
- Itching in the throat
- Pain when swallowing
- Loss of appetite
- Runny nose
- General weakness
- Bad breath
Factors that can make pharyngitis or laryngitis worse
Smoking and cannabis use can be the number one cause of pharyngitis. Other factors can favor its triggering. We are talking about a big sudden temperature change in cold or dry air. Dusty places should also be avoided if you have pharyngitis.
Chemical irritants such as household products or paints are also causes as well as seasonal allergies.
Another major factor in infection is the weakened immune system, mainly pharyngitis. Respiratory disorders, chronic bronchitis, and diabetes are other risk factors. In rare cases, hypothyroidism and respiratory allergies are involved.
Direct or indirect contact with respiratory secretions from an infected person. For example, sneezing, unprotected cough, kissing, door handles, toys, etc.
Complications of infectious pharyngitis
One of the complications arises when a bacteria called group A ß-hemolytic streptococcus gets lodged in the patient’s system. It can cause serious symptoms like heart complications as well as joint problems.
Children and adolescents are more at risk of her angina. Treatment with antibiotics can prevent the most serious complications.
Sometimes bacterial pharyngitis can lead to other kinds of complications, ear infections and sinusitis are the most common. Some less common complications such as nosebleeds, stiff neck, kidney problems may also be present.
Treatment for pharyngitis or laryngitis
In cases of bacterial pharyngitis, it is imperative to receive antibiotic treatment to avoid serious complications such as strep throat.
In cases of viral pharyngitis, caused by a virus, there is no treatment to cure it. Medication only helps to reduce discomfort and symptoms.
When the doctor prescribes drug treatments, they are often painkillers and antipyretics.
Certain medications should be avoided when you have pharyngitides, such as anti-inflammatories and cortisone. For example, they can still be prescribed by a specialist if they are combined with antibiotics.
Home remedies for pharyngitis or laryngitis
A hot drink with lemon and honey is recommended.
Gargling with salt water can also help. Some lozenges are sold to soothe a sore throat. You should drink a lot, as well as take rest.
Taking antibiotics for viral pharyngitis can upset the patient’s immune system without killing the virus. You should not take this kind of medication without being on the diagnosis of the doctor.
Some pharmacies sell products that are effective in relieving the symptoms of laryngitis or pharyngitis. Pastilles, syrup, suppository, etc. Ask your pharmacist to clarify your products.
Be careful with self-medication during pharyngitis. For some people caught with bacterial strep throat, it can have serious heart and joint complications. Consult a doctor if you are in doubt, do not hesitate.
What medication to take for a sore throat?
In many cases, sore throats go away on their own without medication. Syrups, lozenges and other over-the-counter products are used primarily to control symptoms. Doctors will prescribe antibiotics for certain bacterial tonsillitis to prevent complications from pharyngitis or laryngitis.
Why do we have a cough?
The body is equipped with several protective reflexes, the cough is used to clear the respiratory tract of dust, virus, mucus, etc. Very often we cough because it is the body that expels its impurities in the air.
A sore throat does not mean you have pharyngitis or laryngitis, but if there is no improvement in the first 7-10 days, you may need to see a doctor.
Most of the time, this kind of illness heal by itself after a while without medication. Rest and a good cup of hot water and you will get cured quickly!