Sore Throat or Strep Throat? Let WellStreet Urgent Care be the judge.

It’s a conundrum that many people face: does my sickness warrant a trip to the doctor or can it be treated at home? For your continuing peace of mind, in today’s blog post we are going to explain the difference between a sore throat, which is commonly due to a viral infection, and strep throat, which is a bacterial infection.

While a sore throat and strep throat can both cause discomfort and irritation, one of the most significant differences between the two is the intensity of the illness. The common sore throat generally will follow other symptoms of the common cold: nasal drip, stuffiness, cough, and a slight fever. Your throat will appear red and irritated, but without any swelling or spots to be seen. Strep throat can cause extreme sore throat, making it difficult to swallow or even speak. In addition, strep throat is frequently accompanied by a high fever and inflamed tonsils that are covered with white specks. Another sign of strep throat are the lymph nodes on either side of the neck, just under the jawbone, will be swollen and tender to the touch.

The only way to confirm strep throat for sure is to do a swab of the back of the throat to detect the presence of the bacteria. There are both rapid strep tests and overnight cultures for strep. At WellStreet Urgent Care we offer the rapid strep test so that you can get results quickly, right at your visit. If you are found to have strep throat our doctors will immediately prescribe you an antibiotic so that you can start feeling better as soon as possible. Unfortunately, antibiotics are not useful for a viral sore throat.

We hope this information will help you make a wise choice about your treatment the next time you or a loved one has the misfortune of a sore throat here in Atlanta.

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