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Soothing a Sore Throat Without Drugs

By Debra Rodzinak

Having a sore throat is uncomfortable and painful.  For those who are looking for all natural remedies, many options are available.

Saltwater Gargle

Gargling several times per day with a solution of salt and warm water has been found in several studies to fight bacteria, flush out irritating debris, reduce swelling of tissue in the throat, and loosen mucus buildup.

Half a teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water is the recommended dosage.  Do not swallow the salt water, but rather gargle in the back of the mouth and spit out after a few seconds.  Repeat this procedure until relief is felt.  If the taste is too intense, add a small amount of honey which will help with the taste and add additional soothing properties to the gargle.

Drink Fluid

Drinking enough water and staying hydrated keeps the mucous membranes moist.  Moist membranes allow the body the ability to fight bacteria better.  If your throat is too sore to drink a lot of water, try ice cubes.  Not only will they give you the fluid needed, but they will help numb the throat.  Warm fluids such as tea or chicken soup can also be consumed and will add soothing benefits. 


Used for hundreds of years, the sap from the marshmallow plant has been used for its medicinal properties.  Used in tea, it is has had success in soothing sore throats and treating colds and coughs.

The store-bought campfire marshmallows are also good to ease sore throat pain.  The thought is that the gelatin in the marshmallows coats and soothes the swollen tissues of the throat.


If possible, resting is the best thing to do to allow the body to regenerate in order to fight any infection that is the root cause of the sore throat.  Since most sore throats are caused by viruses, doctors agree that rest is the best solution since a virus cannot be treated with antibiotics. 

Chicken Soup

An old favorite for colds, chicken soup’s warmth soothes inflamed throat tissue while the sodium often found in chicken soup is thought to have anti-inflammatory properties.  In addition to the “feel good” properties of chicken soup is its nutritional value.  Often with a sore throat, eating is so painful that proper nourishment is not obtained.  Eating chicken soup can help ensure that the body is strong enough to fight any bacterial infection.


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