Sore throat during pregnancy - causes   

The causes of a sore throat during pregnancy are similar to those outside of pregnancy. A sore throat infection is most commonly caused by viruses such as adenoviruses or rhinoviruses. However, bacteria (e.g. streptococci or staphylococci) can also be the cause of the illness. In such cases, symptoms such as plaque on the tonsils or a high temperature occur. As the expectant mother's immune system is less efficient during pregnancy than before, these infections can occur more frequently, especially in autumn.

Some women also complain of troublesome heartburn during pregnancy, which is caused by excessive relaxation of the lower oesophageal sphincter. Increased heartburn can also manifest itself in the form of a sore throat. However, this is not a symptom of a respiratory infection, but rather a reflux of food particles.

Sore throat during pregnancy - home remedies

Infections with a sore throat are usually self-healing and only require symptomatic treatment in some cases. If the symptoms are not severe and the sore throat is not accompanied by a high temperature or other worrying symptoms, many expectant mothers therefore resort to home remedies to relieve the pain. It is very important to humidify the air in the home sufficiently, as dry air can lead to dry mucous membranes and the onset of a sore throat. Pregnant women also use homemade throat rinses, e.g. water with salt. However, sage tea should be avoided during pregnancy. Rest and sufficient fluid intake are also very important.

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Sore throat during pregnancy - treatment

In addition to home remedies, lozenges or sprays, which are available over the counter from pharmacies, can be used to treat a sore throat that has no other symptoms. However, it is always worth checking whether a particular medication or dietary supplement is safe for pregnant women. Among anti-inflammatory medications, ibuprofen should be avoided, especially in the third trimester, as it can lead to premature blockage of the fallopian tube. Doctors also recommend the use of sore throat sprays instead of drugs with systemic effects, as these largely only act locally and have no effect on the entire female body and the developing baby.

Sore throat during pregnancy - when should you see a doctor?

Most throat infections are viral in nature and the symptoms subside spontaneously after a few days. If additional symptoms such as high fever, coating on the tonsils or muscle pain occur, you should always consult your doctor. Fever is particularly dangerous for children in the developmental phase, so you should not hesitate to consult a specialist.

The Centora scale is used to differentiate between a viral and a bacterial infection, taking into account the presence of fever, cough, coating on the tonsils and enlargement of the lymph nodes. If the doctor suspects a bacterial infection, antibiotic therapy is required, usually with penicillins.


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