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Pharyngitis

General characteristics

General characteristics

Pharyngitis describes an inflammation of the pharynx, in other words a sore throat. The throat becomes inflamed in response to an infection or as the result of physical damage.

A sore throat is a common sign of infection, usually with a virus or bacteria and often accompanies a cold or flu. It can also be a symptom of glandular fever, tonsillitis, streptococcal infection (strep throat) and other such infections or be caused by over straining the voice, inhalation of an irritant, acid reflux, physical damage or allergies. It is also a common symptom in conditions which affect the immune system such as Lyme's disease.

The throat may appear red and swollen and feel painful, especially sore on swallowing and may be accompanied by swollen or enlarged lymph nodes in the neck and around the jaw area.

Healing objectives are to treat the cause of the sore throat, raise the immunity and soothe pain and discomfort until healing is complete.


Diet and lifestyle

Diet and lifestyle

Drink plenty of water, herb teas and freshly squeezed juices throughout the day to stay well hydrated.

Eat foods rich in vitamin C and antioxidants such as berries and citrus fruits or juice them with an apple.

Avoid refined carbohydrates, starches, sugary and processed foods as these lower the body's vitality. Go instead for fresh vegetables, whole grains, fruits etc and keep your diet light, watery and warming.

Make homemade soups containing plenty of onions, leeks, garlic, chives and similar for their infection fighting qualities.


Useful herbs

Useful herbs

Make a strong tea from sage or red sage and gargle with it for several minutes every 2 hours or so. Add some fresh lemon juice for greater effect.

Add a quarter teaspoon of chilli powder to warm water and gargle for a few minutes every few hours or so until the sore throat has gone (this often clears it up in hours). To clear the hot sensation dab your finger in salt and place it under your tongue for a few seconds and the heat will be gone.

A formula containing echinacea (75ml) and wild indigo (50ml) and myrrh (25ml) tinctures can be taken to help fight the infection. Take a teaspoon of the mix in water up to 5 times daily.

Drinking and gargling with agrimony tea is an old tried and tested remedy for all problems in the throat.

A tea made from equal parts of yarrow, peppermint and elderflower can help to fight infection and warm the body up into a good sweat. This speeds up the resolution of any infection present.

Liqourice root is very soothing to a sore throat and also helps to fight infection. Add half a teaspoon of dried root to a cupful of water and simmer for 10 minutes. Drink this down 3 times daily with a little honey added or as part of another herbal tea or juice.

Add some marshmallow root or slippery elm to the above if the throat feels particularly raw and sore.

Strong echinacea root tea can be gargled with or drunk to speed up resolution and ease pain.

Try gargling with strong comfrey leaf tea several times daily.


Natural healing

Natural healing

Add a teaspoon of honey to herbal teas or warm water or take some propolis tincture.

Gargle with sea salt in water several times daily to help soothe inflammation.

Gargling with a teaspoon of cider vinegar diluted in a little water can also help to ease a sore throat.


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