There are few things more irritating and uncomfortable than a sore throat.
The feeling of razor blades in your throat when you swallow or a constant irritation that you cannot relieve can make it difficult to concentrate on anything.
And it just makes you feel downright rubbish. You may even struggle to get a good night’s sleep.
Sore throat symptoms can include pain when swallowing, irritation and itching, as well as swollen tonsils.1
So it is important that we banish it as soon as possible, so you can get back to feeling yourself.
There are a few things that you can do at home to help to soothe the pain and irritation from your sore throat.
Here we take a look at some natural remedies for helping to ease a sore throat.
How to manage a sore throat
We have put together this list of home remedies that you could try to get rid of your sore throat:
Gargling with salt water
A salt water gargle can help to break down secretions as well as help kill bacteria in the throat, helping to reduce swelling, keep the throat clean and soothing your sore throat.
Simply mix half a teaspoon with a full glass of warm water and gargle every three hours until your throat starts to feel better.2
Honey has natural antibacterial properties and it can offer relief to your discomfort, help reduce inflammation as well as kill bacteria and fight off viral infections. So you can take honey to help ease your sore throat.
Mix two tablespoons of honey into a warm glass of water and drink several times a day, as and when you need to.3
Drink plenty of water
Not only great advice for life in general, drinking plenty of water can also help to relieve your sore throat.
The drier your throat gets, the worse it feels, so make sure you drink plenty of water to help create more saliva.4
Steam loosens mucus and can help to moisturise and soothe a sore throat.5
Take a hot shower and breathe in when it gets steamy or else place your head over a bowl of hot water and breathe in the steam (taking care not to burn yourself of course!).
This may also help to unblock your nose and sinuses if you are suffering from blockages here too.
The extract from the marshmallow plant or althaea officinalis has been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years.
It contains a substance called mucilage, which lubricates the throat when a person swallows it and it may also help to soothe a dry cough.6
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar can kill bacteria in the throat as well as coating and soothing a sore throat.
It may also help to loosen any phlegm which is irritating the throat. Mix one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar with eight ounces of water and gargle.7
Drink cold liquids
Drinking ice cold liquids can numb your throat and calm some of the swelling that is causing your pain.8
Pop a bottle of water in the freezer for ten minutes, or until just before it becomes frozen, and then sip on this for some relief.
Liquorice root can soothe a sore throat and reduce coughing.9
You can buy liquorice root teabags or make your own at home. Simply add dried liquorice root to boiling water and leave to steep for five minutes, before pouring through a strainer.10
We have all heard about eating chicken soup when you are feeling ill but can it really help a sore throat?
Studies have shown that homemade chicken soup works to inhibit neutrophil migration, which causes swelling in the throat.11
Plus, it is warm, comfortable and delicious. Just the thing when you are not quite feeling yourself!
Chamomile has been traditionally used for medicinal purposes as it has antioxidant and astringent properties.
It can help relieve the symptoms of a sore throat and colds as well as work to support your immune system.12
Lemon juice can help to break up mucus and provide relief from pain.
Lemons are also packed full of vitamin C which helps to support a healthy immune system that can then fight off any infection.
Mix a teaspoon of lemon juice into a glass of warm water and drink when you feel you need some relief.13
Of course, if you find that you are suffering from a recurring sore throat, you have a severe sore throat or your sore throat does not improve after a week, then you should seek advice from your GP.14
Last updated: 14 April 2021