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Sore Throat: Is it Viral or Something More?

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‘Wake up with a sore throat this morning? Case numbers of Strep Throat continue to be high at area Centra Care locations and whether you’re an adult or child, Strep Throat is a contagious infection requiring antibiotic treatment.

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Strep throat is the most common bacterial throat infection.

And this time of year (cold and flu season) is when Strep most commonly occurs. Caused by group A streptococcus bacteria, Strep Throat presents many of the same symptoms of a viral sore throat, so a doctor will need to swab your throat (rapid strep test) to determine if you will need an antibiotic.

Strep Throat is transmitted through direct contact with saliva or nasal fluids from an infected person. A crowded environment like an office or school can make it easier for the bacteria to spread.


  • Painful sore throat
  • White patches on your tonsils
  • Swollen lymph nodes in your neck
  • Fever

Pain-relieving suggestions:

  • Gargle with warm salt-water
  • Take over-the-counter pain medications like acetaminophen or ibuprofen
  • Numb the throat with over-the-counter sprays or lozenges
  • Avoid acidic beverages like citrus juices or sodas

*TIP* If you have a positive Strep diagnosis, it’s time for a new toothbrush. Start with the new brush after 24 hours on antibiotics