Introduction to Strep Throat
Strep throat is an infection with a germ called Group A streptococcus bacteria that causes a sore throat.
What is Strep Throat?
Strep throat is an infection with a germ called Group A streptococcus bacteria that causes a sore throat. It is most common in children aged between 5 and 15, however anyone can get it. Strep throat is spread from person to person by contact with fluids transmitted into the air by coughing, sneezing or breathing.
What are the causes for Strep Throat?
Strep throat is spread from person to person by contact with fluids transmitted into the air by coughing, sneezing or breathing.
What are the symptoms of Strep Throat?
Symptoms usually appear about 2 to 5 days after contracting the bacteria. These symptoms include: fever, chills, sore and red throat with white patches, pain when swallowing, swollen glands in your neck. Other general symptoms: loss of appetite, headache and nausea. Depending on the strain of streptococcal bacteria, you may develop a rash over the neck and chest that has a sandpaper like feel.
How is Strep Throat treated?
Sore throats are only treated with antibiotics if the strep test is positive. Penicillin or amoxicillin are usual the antibiotics of choice for this bacteria. This medication should be taken for 10 days. It is important to take the full course of antibiotics, to kill all of the bacteria, even if symptoms have improved or resolved. Other actions to take with a sore throat include: drinking warm liquids, gargling with warm salt water, sucking on throat lozenges and taking pain killers such as paracetamol. Untreated strep throat can cause complications such as: kidney disease, tonsil abscess, rheumatic fever and scarlet fever.