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Recurrent Strep Throat

Updated: May 14


A Man Taking Medicine for Recurrent Strep Throat.

Recurrent strep throat is a problem that keeps coming back, making life harder for people of all ages. It can cause many problems and make you feel sick. In this guide, we'll explore the causes, symptoms, and ways to manage and prevent recurrent strep throat.


What is Strep Throat?

Strep throat is an infection in your throat and tonsils caused by a kind of bacteria called Group A Streptococcus. It makes your throat hurt and can make it hard to swallow. You can catch it from someone else if they cough or sneeze near you. It's different from a sore throat caused by a virus because you need special medicine, called antibiotics, to make it better. Knowing about strep throat helps us find the best ways to make it better or stop it from happening again.


Symptoms of Strep Throat

When you have strep throat, you can feel different symptoms than other throat infections. Knowing these symptoms helps you get the right treatment quicker. Some common symptoms are:


Sore Throat

One big sign of strep throat is having a very sore throat that doesn't get better. Your throat might hurt a lot, more than just a little tickle or scratchiness. It could feel really bad when you try to eat or drink something.


Swollen Tonsils

The infection makes the tonsils red, swollen, and bigger. Sometimes, you might see white or yellow patches, which show there is pus.


Difficulty Swallowing

Strep throat can make it hard for you to swallow because your throat hurts. Sometimes it might feel like something is stuck in your throat or it just hurts a lot when you eat or drink.


Fever

Strep throat can also cause you to have a fever. It can make your body temperature get higher than normal very fast. Taking your temperature can help you figure out if you have strep throat or another illness.


Headache

Some people with strep throat also have a headache. The headache can be mild or severe, and it might make you feel sick all over your body.


Red Spots on the Roof of the Mouth

Sometimes, people with strep throat get little red spots on the top of their mouth. This can be another sign that you have strep throat, especially if you have other symptoms too.


Rash

A few people with strep throat might get a red rash on their skin called scarlet fever. Most people with strep throat don't get this rash, but if you do have it, it's a strong sign that you have strep throat.


Body Aches

Strep throat can make your whole body feel sore and achy, like when you have the flu. This adds to the overall feeling of sickness that comes with the infection.


Chills

Strep throat can also give you chills. This can happen when you start to get a fever and your body feels really cold, even if the room isn't cold. It makes you feel even more sick and uncomfortable.


Loss of Appetite

Because your throat is sore and your body feels sick, you might not feel like eating when you have strep throat. But it's important to drink lots of water and try to eat things that are easy to swallow to help your body get better.


Causes of Strep Throat

Strep throat is an infection you can catch from a kind of bacteria called Group A Streptococcus. Learning about how you get strep throat can help you try not to get it and know what to do if you do get it.


Streptococcus Bacteria (Group A)

Strep throat happens because of a kind of germ called Streptococcus. This germ is easy to catch from someone else if they cough or sneeze near you.


Person-to-Person Transmission

Strep throat is easy to catch from other people, especially if you're close to them. You can get it from touching things that have droplets from a sick person on them, like doorknobs or toys. Being around lots of people, like at school or at home with a big family, can make it easier to catch strep throat.


Airborne Droplets from an Infected Person

One way you can catch strep throat is by breathing in the tiny drops of spit or mucus that come out when someone who's sick with strep throat coughs or sneezes. The germ that causes strep throat is in these drops, and if you breathe them in, you can get sick too.


Contaminated Objects and Surfaces

Another way to catch strep throat is by touching something that has the germs on it, like a doorknob or a toy, and then touching your face. The germs can get into your body through your mouth, nose, or eyes. Washing your hands a lot can help stop this from happening.


Compromised Immune System

People who have a weak immune system can get strep throat more easily. Your immune system is what helps your body fight off sickness. If it's not working as well as it should, you might catch strep throat more often. Some things that can make your immune system weak are having a long-term illness, taking certain medicines, or other things that can make it hard for your body to fight off germs.


Age Group Vulnerability

Strep throat can impact people of all ages, but it's seen more often in kids from 5 to 15 years old. This might be because they're around lots of other kids at school or daycare, which makes it easier for the germs to spread from one person to another.


Incomplete Antibiotic Treatment

If you don't finish taking all the medicine the doctor gives you for strep throat, the germs might not all be gone. This can make it easier for you to get strep throat again later. It's important to take all the medicine the doctor tells you to, even if you start feeling better before it's all gone.


Environmental Factors

Cold and wet weather can make it easier for strep throat germs to live and spread. This is good to know so you can be more careful during these times of the year so you don't catch strep throat.


Personal Hygiene Practices

To lower your chances of getting strep throat, keep yourself clean and healthy. Wash your hands often, cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, and try to stay away from people who are already sick. Doing these things can help stop strep throat from spreading to you.


Poor Air Quality

When the air around you isn't clean, it can be easier to breathe in the germs that cause strep throat. Making sure there's lots of fresh air and good airflow in places where lots of people are can help make the air cleaner and safer to breathe.


Risk Factors for Strep Throat

Some things can make it more likely for you to catch strep throat. We call these "risk factors." It's good to know what they are so you can do your best to avoid strep throat and take care of it quickly if you do get it.


1. Age Group Vulnerability (More Common in Children)

Children between 5 and 15 years old are more likely to get strep throat. This might be because they're around a lot of other kids at school, and their bodies are still developing their immune systems.


2. Close Contact with Infected Individuals

Being close to people who already have strep throat can make it more likely for you to catch it too. This can happen if you live with a lot of people, go to school, or work in a place where lots of people are close together.


3. Weakened Immune System

If your body's natural defenses (called your immune system) aren't working as well as they should, it can be easier for you to get strep throat. This can happen if you have a long-term illness, take certain medicines, or have other things that make it harder for your body to fight off germs.


4. Recent Exposure to Strep Throat

If you've been around someone with strep throat lately, especially if you live with them or spend a lot of time close to them, you're more likely to get it too. The germs can get in the air when the person with strep throat coughs or sneezes, making it easier for you to catch it.


5. Incomplete Antibiotic Treatment

If you had strep throat before and didn't finish all the medicine the doctor gave you, you might get strep throat again. The medicine helps your body kill all the germs that cause strep throat. If you stop taking it too soon, some of those germs might still be there and make you sick again.


6. Environmental Factors

The place where you live can affect how likely it is to get strep throat. For example, cold and wet weather can help the germs that cause strep throat live and spread. This can make more people sick during those times.


7. Poor Personal Hygiene Practices

Not keeping yourself clean can make it easier to get strep throat. Things like not washing your hands often or not covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze can spread germs to other people. Good hygiene practices help stop strep throat from spreading.


8. Sharing Personal Items

If you use the same things as someone who has strep throat, like utensils, cups, or towels, you might get sick too. The germs that cause strep throat can get on these things and spread to you when you use them.


9. Living or Working in Crowded Environments

If you spend a lot of time around lots of people, like at healthcare facilities, schools, or busy public transportation, you're more likely to get strep throat. The germs that cause strep throat can spread easily when lots of people are close together.


10. Genetic Predisposition

Sometimes, people might get strep throat a lot because of something in their genes. Genes are like messages inside our bodies that tell us what to do. Some people's genes might make it easier for them to get strep throat, but we still don't know exactly why this happens.


What is a Recurrent Strep Throat?

Recurrent strep throat is when you get strep throat a lot, more than other people do. Some people might get strep throat once in a while, but others might get it a lot more often. This can make their daily life harder and make them feel not good a lot of the time.


Reasons for Recurring Strep Throat

When people keep getting strep throat, they want to know why it keeps happening. Finding out why can help them stop it from happening so much or make it easier to deal with when it does happen.


1. Incomplete Treatment of Initial Infection

One reason people keep getting strep throat is that they might not finish taking all the medicine the doctor gave them when they had strep throat the first time. Not all Streptococcus bacteria might be gone if they stop taking the medicine too soon. This can make it easier for them to get sick again later.


2. Close and Prolonged Exposure

Being around people who have strep throat a lot can make you more likely to keep getting it too. This can happen if you live with lots of people, go to school, or work in a place where you're close to lots of people. The germs that cause strep throat can spread easily when lots of people are close together.


3. Carrying the Bacteria Without Symptoms

Sometimes, people can have strep throat germs in their body but not feel sick. We call these people "carriers". They can spread strep throat germs to other people even though they don't feel sick themselves. This can make other people keep getting strep throat.


4. Weakened Immune System

If your body's defenses (called your immune system) aren't working as well as they should, you might get strep throat a lot. This can happen if you have a long-term illness, take certain medicines, or have other things that make it harder for your body to fight off germs.


5. Environmental Factors

The place where you live and the weather can affect whether you keep getting strep throat. For example, cold and wet weather can help the strep throat germs live and spread. This can make it more likely for you to get strep throat more often.


6. Genetic Predisposition

Sometimes, people might get recurrent strep throat because of something in their genes. Genes are like messages inside our bodies that tell us what to do. Some people's genes might make it easier for them to get strep throat, but we still don't know exactly why this happens.


7. Resistant Strains of Bacteria

Sometimes, the bacteria that cause strep throat can become resistant to certain antibiotics. If someone keeps encountering these resistant strains, they may end up with more bouts of strep throat that are harder to get rid of.


8. Poor Personal Hygiene Practices

Not keeping yourself clean can make it easier to get strep throat again and again. Things like not washing your hands often or not covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze can spread germs to other people. This lack of cleanliness can lead to more bouts of strep throat happening again and again.


9. Living or Working in Crowded Environments

Living or working in places where many people are close together, like hospitals, schools, or crowded buses, can increase the chances of getting strep throat. People in these places might have strep throat come back again and again.


10. Chronic Tonsillitis or Tonsil Stones

Some people have problems with their tonsils that can make them get strep throat a lot. Tonsils are small parts in the back of your throat. If they're not healthy or have little bumps called tonsil stones, germs can hide there and make you sick more often.


Treatment for Recurrent Strep Throat

Getting strep throat a lot can be hard because it can make you feel sick often. But there are ways to treat it and make it happen less. Learning about these treatments can help you feel better and get sick less often.


1. Comprehensive Antibiotic Treatment

One of the most important ways to treat strep throat that keeps coming back is by taking special medicines called antibiotics. Two common ones are called penicillin and amoxicillin. You usually take this medicine for 10 to 14 days. This helps make sure all the strep throat germs are gone. It's very important to take the medicine just like the doctor tells you, so your body can get rid of all the germs.


2. Culture and Sensitivity Testing

If you keep getting strep throat, your doctor might do a special test called culture and sensitivity testing to find out what kind of strep throat germs are making you sick and which medicine will work best to kill them. This can help the doctor give you the best medicine for you and make you less likely to get strep throat again.


3. Addressing Underlying Health Conditions

It's important to find and treat any health problems that make your body's defenses (immune system) weak. If you have other health issues or take medicines that can make your immune system not work as well, you might need help from your doctor to get better. Fixing these problems can make your body stronger and help you fight off strep throat more easily.


4. Tonsillectomy

If you keep getting strep throat because your tonsils are always infected or have little bumps called tonsil stones, your doctor might say it's a good idea to take out your tonsils. This is called a tonsillectomy. It's a surgery that takes out the tonsils so germs can't hide there and make you sick again. Doctors usually think about this if other ways of treating strep throat don't work well enough.


5. Close Monitoring and Follow-Up

When you're getting treatment for strep throat that keeps coming back, your doctor should watch you closely and have you come back for check-ups often. This helps them make sure the treatment is working and change it if needed. It's especially important to do this for people with a history of recurrent strep throat.


How to Stop Recurring Strep Throat

Taking steps ahead of time can help stop strep throat from coming back:


1. Good Personal Hygiene Practices

Keeping yourself clean is really important to stop strep throat from coming back. You should wash your hands a lot, cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, and not share things like utensils, cups, or towels with other people. Doing these things can help you stay away from the strep throat bacteria.


2. Avoiding Close Contact with Infected Individuals

Try not to be too close to people who have strep throat. This can help stop the germs from getting to you. It's extra important if you live with lots of people, go to school, or work in a place where you're close to others a lot.


3. Strengthening the Immune System

Making your body strong can help stop strep throat from coming back. To do this, you should eat healthy foods, get some exercise every day, sleep well, and try to not be worried or stressed. When you do these things, your body's defenses (immune system) can work better to fight off infections and make it less likely for you to get strep throat again.


4. Environmental Awareness

Paying attention to the weather and your surroundings can help stop strep throat. When it's cold and wet outside, more people might get strep throat. So, make sure to wear warm clothes and keep your home and work clean to stay away from strep throat bacteria.


5. Educational Outreach and Community Awareness

Teaching people about strep throat and how to stop it can help keep everyone healthier. When people know how to keep from getting strep throat and when to see a doctor, it makes it easier to stop the germs from spreading. This can help make the whole community healthier.


Home Remedies and Natural Approaches

Going to the doctor is very important when you have strep throat. But there are also some things you can do at home to feel better. These things can help along with the medicine your doctor gives you. Here are some simple and helpful tips:


1. Hydration

Drinking enough is very important when you have strep throat. You can try drinking warm drinks like tea, soup, or warm water with honey. These can help make your throat feel better and stop you from getting too dry (dehydrated). They can also help you feel not so bad for a while.


2. Saltwater Gargle

Gargling with warm salt water can help reduce throat swelling and ease pain. Mix a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water, gargle, and spit it out. You can do this several times a day.


3. Honey and Lemon

Mixing honey and lemon can help soothe a sore throat. Combine a tablespoon of honey with fresh lemon juice in warm water or herbal tea. Drinking this can provide relief and promote well-being.


4. Humidify the Air

Making the air in your room a little wet (moist) can help your sore throat feel better. You can use a machine called a humidifier to do this. It's especially good to use at night when you're sleeping. If you want, you can add a little bit of a special oil called eucalyptus to the humidifier. This oil might help you breathe easier.


5. Throat Lozenges or Hard Candy

Sucking on special throat lozenges or any hard candy can help make your throat less dry and scratchy. These candies help make more spit (saliva) in your mouth, which helps your throat feel better. You can try lozenges with soothing ingredients like menthol or honey in them to make your throat feel even better.


6. Turmeric Milk

There is a special spice called turmeric that might help make your throat feel better. Turmeric can help stop swelling and might even help fight bacteria. You can mix a little bit of turmeric with warm milk and honey to make a drink. Try drinking this before bed. It might help your throat feel better while you sleep.


7. Steam Inhalation

Breathing in steam can relieve throat pain and reduce stuffy nose. Boil water and inhale the steam by leaning over the pot with a towel over your head to trap the steam. Be careful to avoid burns and stay at a safe distance from the hot water.


8. Rest and Sleep

Getting enough rest is really important when you have strep throat. Letting your body rest helps it get better and fight off the germs. Make sure you have a nice and quiet place to sleep. This can help you feel better faster.


9. Chamomile Tea

A special tea called chamomile can help your sore throat. It can make the soreness and swelling feel better. You can add some honey to make it taste good. This tea can help your throat and help you feel calm and relaxed.


10. Ginger Tea

Ginger is a spice that can help your throat feel better. It can help stop swelling and can even help make your body stronger to fight off germs. You can make a tea with ginger by putting slices of ginger in hot water. To make it taste good, you can add honey and lemon. This ginger tea can help your throat feel better and help your body stay strong.


When to See a Doctor

It's important to know when you need to see a doctor. If your throat doesn't get better, gets worse, or you keep getting strep throat, it's a good idea to talk to a doctor. They can check and give you the right medicine to help you feel better and stop you from getting strep throat again.


At Center One Medical, we know how tough it can be dealing with this ongoing issue, but we're here to support you. Our team of healthcare professionals is committed to giving you the individualized care you need. Don't let recurring strep throat stop you from feeling your best. Contact us and book an appointment with Center One Medical today. Let us guide you on your path to better health.


Conclusion

In conclusion, getting strep throat a lot is not easy, but there are things you can do to make it better. If you know why it happens, what it feels like, and what to do about it, you can help yourself feel better. Don't forget, there are people to help you, like Center One Medical, and you can feel better with their help. You don't have to keep getting strep throat, and you can have a healthy future.



FAQs


1. Can strep throat go away on its own without treatment?

  • Sometimes, strep throat might get better by itself, but it's still a good idea to go to the doctor. The doctor can check and make sure it's really strep throat and give you medicine to help you feel better faster.

2. Is strep throat more common in children than in adults?

  • Strep throat can affect people of any age, but it's more common in kids and teenagers.

3. Can I get strep throat from someone who doesn't show symptoms?

  • Yes, you can get strep throat from someone who doesn't look sick. Some people have strep throat bacteria but don't feel bad, and they can still pass it to you.

4. Is there a vaccine for strep throat?

  • Right now, there's no vaccine that can stop you from getting strep throat. We mainly rely on staying clean and keeping our immune system strong to prevent it.

5. How long does it take for antibiotics to work in treating strep throat?

  • When you take medicine (antibiotics) for strep throat, you usually start feeling better in about 1 to 2 days. But it's really important to keep taking the medicine until the doctor says it's okay to stop.

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