When your throat seems swollen, scratchy and uncomfortable, do you wonder if you have strep throat? Although sore throats are a common occurrence, there is a small chance that your sensitive throat is due to strep since it accounts for a lower percentage of sore throats.
However, if you do have strep throat, which is a bacterial infection, it can cause a substantial amount of pain. It can also create some severe complications like rheumatic fever and kidney inflammation if left untreated.
Strep throat can affect anyone, regardless of age or health condition, though it is most common in young children. Should your child display any possible signs of strep, it’s crucial to seek immediate medical attention.
Strep Throat Causes
Group A Streptococcus, or Streptococcus pyogenes, is the bacteria that causes the strep throat infection. This bacteria spreads easily and is highly contagious. A sneeze or a cough causes infected airborne droplets to disperse, contaminating others through physical and close contact, shared drinks or food. Strep throat causes also include touching shared objects, such as doorknobs and bathroom faucets, which then leads to infection once a person touches their face or rubs their eyes.
Strep Throat Symptoms
Strep throat symptoms may include:
- Achy muscles and body
- Vomiting or nausea, especially in kids
- Dizziness or a headache
- Tender, swollen neck lymph nodes
- Small red spots on the palate (roof of mouth)
- Swollen, red tonsils (with pus or white patches)
- Pain when swallowing
- Quick onset of throat pain
Although these are typical signs of strep throat, it is possible to display these symptoms and not have the strep bacteria. There may be other health issues at play, so it is important to seek medical advice for testing to assess the underlying cause of the signs and discomfort.
Contact Oklahoma Otolaryngology Associates to continue on your journey to healthy living with a dynamic group of physicians who are dedicated to your well-being, call our Norman clinic at 405.364.2666.