Strep throat refers to the bacterial infection that occurs in the throat. Typically, it’s common among young children, but it can affect anyone. According to a study, infection is rather common and results from being infected by the Streptococcus bacteria (called “group A strep”).
This infection is airborne and can be transferred by coughing, sneezing, or even sharing the same plate of food. Of course, quite a few symptoms show when someone suffers from strep throat. Here are a few of the most prominent strep throat symptoms:
- Throat pain
- Pain while swallowing food
- Reddening and swelling of tonsils (white patches with pus)
- Body aches
- Red spots on the palate
Also read: Pneumonia Symptoms: Warning Signs You Shouldn't Ignore
Causes of Strep Throat
For starters, we know that the bacteria, Streptococcus, is one of the main strep throat causes, and it is from group A Streptococcus.
One important thing to know about strep throat is that it is extremely contagious and can spread easily from person to person. It can spread through respiratory droplets, so sneezing, wheezing, coughing, or even interacting with an infected person can spread strep throat.
Strep Throat Treatment
If you’re diagnosed with strep throat, you will be given oral antibiotics. If taken during the first 48 hours of being diagnosed, it reduces the severity of other symptoms.
But if there is no improvement, then it is imperative that you speak with a provider. Depending on the situation and the person’s medical history, the doctor will then recommend another strep throat treatment.
Tests for Strep Throat
Medical healthcare providers usually perform a thorough physical test to diagnose strep throat. Here are the strep throat tests that your doctor may conduct depending on the situation.
- A molecular test (PCR) - is done by swabbing your throat for samples.
- Throat culture - similar to a PCR test, a swab is used to collect secretion samples from the back of your throat. The samples are then studied to determine the presence of the streptococcus bacteria.
- Rapid antigen test - this test revolves around collecting swab samples from your throat, and then the doctor looks for signs of strep throat low in the form of bacterial (antigen) substances. The doctor may suggest a throat culture if this test does not yield results.
Things You Need to Know
Strep throat is a common infection than can be treated with proper medical guidance.
If you are prescribed antibiotics, make sure to take the medication properly to recover completely from the infection.
If you think you’re showing symptoms of strep throat, contact us to speak to one of our providers. Schedule a same-day appointment with our team! We are also available for any other primary care needs.