As the seasons change from winter to spring and summer, many people experience various symptoms of seasonal allergies, including a sore throat. A sore throat can be a bothersome allergy symptom, but don’t worry — allergy relief can be simple. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about how allergies can cause a sore throat and what you can do to soothe it.

Can Allergies Cause Sore Throat?

When you are allergic to something like pollen, pet dander, dust mites, or even certain foods, your immune system triggers an inflammatory response in the nasal passages, sinuses, and throat. This inflammation can lead to bothersome symptoms such as nasal congestion, sneezing, watery eyes, and, yes, a sore throat.

As part of the inflammatory response, your body will also create excess mucus within the nasal passages and sinuses, which can slip down the back of your throat. This is called post-nasal drip, which can cause the sore throat associated with allergies.

How to Get Rid of Your Sore Throat

The solution to a sore throat is to eliminate the mucus that causes it. Here are some helpful tips. Here are a few ways that can help clear excess mucus and post-nasal drip.

  • Avoid Allergens: If you can identify what may be causing your sore throat, try to avoid the allergen whenever possible. For example, if you are sensitive to outdoor allergens like pollen or grass, try keeping your windows closed during the peak allergy season or install an allergy-friendly air filter in your home. If you are allergic to dust mites, use allergy-friendly pillow and mattress covers, wash your sheets regularly in hot water, and remove as much unnecessary carpeting or upholstered furniture in your home as possible.
  • Gargle with Salt Water: Gargling with salt water can help remove mucus from the back of your throat and reduce inflammation. You can do a saltwater gargle by adding a teaspoon of salt into a glass of warm water and letting it dissolve. Then, take a sip, tilt your head backward, and make an “ahh” sound to allow the water to bubble in your mouth and the back of your throat. Try not to swallow the water as best as you can. You can do this 2-4 times daily to help relieve your sore throat.
  • Drink Plenty of Fluids: Increasing your fluid intake can help thin mucus and move it out of your throat, relieving discomfort. When suffering from a sore throat, drink extra water whenever possible. You can also try drinking hot fluids, like tea, to help soothe the throat.
  • Eat Some Honey: Honey is a natural cold remedy and can be a great way to help soothe a sore throat and settle a cough. Add some honey to a cup of tea or simply eat a teaspoon full a few times daily to decrease inflammation and soothe irritation.
  • Use a Saline Nasal Rinse or Spray: A saline nasal rinse or spray targets the mucus in your sinuses directly to help reduce the occurrence of a sore throat. It will help clear out unnecessary mucus from the nasal passages before it has the chance to slip down the back of your throat and cause irritation. Saline nasal rinses are easily purchased at any drugstore to relieve nasal congestion and other bothersome cold or allergy symptoms. Just make sure to always follow the directions on the packaging before using.
  • Get Relief With Allergy Medication: When all else fails, many different allergy medications are readily available over the counter at your local pharmacy to help relieve your allergy symptoms. It is essential to always check with your doctor before starting any new medications to avoid unwanted side effects.

When to Get Help From a Doctor

If you have concerns that your sore throat may be due to more than just seasonal allergies or that it has made it difficult to eat and drink normally, it may be time to see your doctor. And, if seasonal allergies are causing you to miss out on your favorite outdoor activities, it may be time to discuss your options with an allergy specialist or internal medicine specialist.

Don’t live with a chronic sore throat – schedule an appointment today!