Skip to content

    Cold, Flu, & Cough Health Center

    Understanding Sore Throat -- the Basics

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Everyone knows what a sore throat feels like. It’s one of the most common health complaints, particularly during the colder months of the year, when respiratory diseases are at their peak.

    The raw, scratchy, burning feeling at the back of your throat is often the first warning sign that you have a cold, or that the flu is on the way. But it can also be the first symptom of more serious conditions, so you should watch how it develops.

    Recommended Related to Cold & Flu

    Planes, Cruise Ships, and Germs

    Flying to great-aunt Erma's house for Thanksgiving? Or taking a leisurely wintertime cruise along the shores of the Mexican Riviera? Boost your chances of healthy travel by taking a few preventive steps. That way, you'll cut your risk of catching cold and flu from other plane passengers. And you won't be confined to your cabin on the cruise ship, battling a nasty case of gastroenteritis while other passengers are off enjoying the sights.

    Read the Planes, Cruise Ships, and Germs article > >

    Call your doctor if your sore throat feels worse or lasts longer than the run-of-the-mill type.

    WebMD Medical Reference

    Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD on March 11, 2015

    Today on WebMD

    hot toddy
    15 tips to help you feel better.
    man sneezing into elbow
    Do echinacea and vitamin C really help a cold?
     
    teen girl coughing
    Get a good night’s rest with these remedies.
    elder berry
    Eat these to fight colds, flu, and more.
     
    Natural Cold Flu Remedies Slideshow
    Slideshow
    cold weather
    VIDEO
     
    Allergy And Sinus Symptom Evaluator
    Article
    Boy holding ear
    Slideshow
     
    woman receiving vaccine shot
    Article
    woman with fever
    Article
     
    Waking up from sleep
    Article
    woman with sore throat
    Slideshow