Sore throat: Causes and ways to control it

Mucus plays an important role in protecting the respiratory system, helping to lubricate the airways and filter dirt. When you breathe in, allergens, viruses, and dust stick to the mucus, which is then eliminated from the body. However, sometimes a thick throat can make you feel uncomfortable and cause congestion.

Let's find out the cause and how to fix this situation in the following article.

What causes a lot of mucus in the throat?

Throat with a lot of mucus or a throat with a lot of phlegm is often caused by health problems. A number of medical conditions can stimulate the body to produce excessive mucus, including:

  • Acid reflux
  • Allergy
  • Asthma
  • Respiratory tract infections
  • Lung problems, such as chronic bronchitis, pneumonia, cystic fibrosis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Mucous Throat: Causes and Controls • SignsSymptomsList.com

In addition, excessive phlegm in the throat can also be caused by environmental and lifestyle factors, such as:

  • Low indoor air humidity
  • Drinking too little water and fluids
  • Consuming too much coffee, tea, alcohol, leads to dehydration
  • Side effects of some medications
  • Smoke

How to control when there is too much mucus in the throat

If a throat condition with a lot of mucus is frequent and significantly affects your life, you should see your doctor for a diagnosis and specific treatment plan advice. In particular, some of the following ways can help you control the condition of your throat with a lot of phlegm:

Over-the-counter and prescription drugs

Certain prescription and over-the-counter medications are able to thin and limit the build-up of mucus in the throat. These include:

  • Over-the-counter (OTC) medications: Cough medicines such as guaifenesin work to reduce phlegm and thin mucus in the throat and chest.
  • Prescription medications: Mucolytics such as hypertonic saline and dornase alfa help reduce mucus buildup in the throat. Besides, if the excess mucus is caused by a bacterial infection, you need to use antibiotics to treat it.

Self-care methods at home

Mucous Throat: Causes and Controls • SignsSymptomsList.com

You can also limit a thick throat with these home remedies:

  • Gargle with salt water: This method can help kill germs and clear mucus in the back of the throat. To make a saline solution, mix 1/2 teaspoon of salt in 240ml of warm water, gargle for 10-15 seconds and then spit it out.
  • Humidify the air with a humidifier: Increasing the humidity in the air helps keep the mucus in your throat from thickening.
  • Drink plenty of water: Drinking plenty of plain water can help clear up congestion and make it easier for mucus to flow. You can also add other warm liquids such as broth or soup, but avoid drinking caffeinated beverages as they can cause dehydration.
  • Elevate pillows behind your head: Lying flat on the floor without a pillow or with a pillow that is too low can create the feeling of mucus building up in the back of your throat.
  • Avoid using decongestants: Decongestants can make it harder to reduce and remove mucus.
  • Avoid irritants, perfumes, chemicals, and pollution: These can irritate the mucous membranes, causing the body to produce more mucus and phlegm than usual.
  • Quitting smoking: Quitting smoking is very helpful, especially with chronic lung disease like asthma or COPD.

When do you need to see a doctor?

Mucous Throat: Causes and Controls • SignsSymptomsList.com

Your body always produces mucus. The nose and throat can produce about 1-2 liters of mucus per day. However, if your throat is producing too much mucus, it could be a sign of a medical condition that needs attention. You should go to the hospital right away if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Throat with a lot of mucus that lasts more than 4 weeks
  • Mucus is getting thicker
  • Mucus increases in volume or changes color
  • Fever
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Hemoptisi
  • Wheeze

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