Strep throat is an infection in the back of the throat. It is caused by certain bacteria. It is treated with antibiotics and self care. It usually gets better within a few days.
To ease throat pain:
Drink plenty of fluids such as water, unsweetened juice, or tea.
Eat soft, cold foods such as yogurt, gelatin, or popsicles. They may help soothe your throat.
Rest until you feel better. Slowly return to normal activity as you are able.
Return to work or school when the doctor has said it is okay.
Strep throat is treated with antibiotics. Take all the antibiotics you are given. Do this even when you are feeling well.
Your doctor may also advise medicines to ease throat or other pain.
Note: Do not give aspirin or aspirin products to a child who has an infection. It may cause serious problems.
When taking medicines:
To keep from spreading strep throat to others:
Your doctor will need to check on your progress. Be sure to go to all advised appointments.
Call your doctor if you are not getting better or you have:
If you think you have an emergency, call for medical help right away.
American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians
The College of Family Physicians of Canada
Specimen collection: performing – oropharyngeal (throat) swabbing. EBSCO Nursing Reference Center website. Available at: https://www.ebscohost.com/nursing/products/nursing-reference-center. Accessed April 13, 2021.
Strep throat. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/dotw/strepthroat/index.html. Accessed April 13, 2021.
Strep throat. Kids Health—Nemours Foundation website. Available at: https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/strep-throat.html. Accessed April 13, 2021.
Streptococcal pharyngitis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/streptococcal-pharyngitis. Accessed April 13, 2021.
Last reviewed March 2021 by EBSCO Medical Review Board David L. Horn, MD, FACP Last Updated: 11/5/2021