When to go to Urgent Care for Sore Throat
Other than being a pain, a sore throat is usually not life-threatening. In fact, it can actually be common in healthy adults, especially during cold and flu season. When you have an infection causing your sore throat, you should see your primary care physician or an urgent care clinic immediately. They will run tests and ensure there are no serious conditions present such as strep throat or mono that need treatment with antibiotics. Additionally, if you’re having difficulty breathing because of your sore throat, even just a little bit, it’s time to make an appointment with urgent care experts as soon as possible.
If your sore throat is severe and you have a high fever, you should head right over to urgent care. In other words, if your illness symptoms are significantly more severe than what you’d experience with a regular cold or cough. If your sore throat isn’t bothering you too much and it feels like a normal infection, you can likely treat it at home. Symptoms that warrant treatment at home include: 1) Mild-to-moderate pain and 2) No fever or chills. You can also try out some of these natural remedies for a sore throat before going in. However, if they don’t relieve your symptoms within one day, definitely give urgent care a call!
Some sore throats are a sign of strep throat or some other serious problem. Sore throats can also be caused by food allergies, tonsillitis or Epstein-Barr virus (the virus that causes mononucleosis). Whatever your symptoms are, you want to take care of them quickly. The best thing to do is consult a physician as soon as possible. If you need more immediate help and want immediate treatment, head on over to urgent care. (See What Is Urgent Care?) There may be times when you have no access to healthcare and need a doctor’s attention right away.
If you’re experiencing a sore throat and other symptoms like swollen lymph nodes, nausea, or fever, you should go to urgent care. These are signs of strep throat, which needs immediate medical attention. You’ll likely get prescribed antibiotics in urgent care or be referred on to a specialist like an ENT (ear nose and throat doctor). It’s important that you get a firm diagnosis because left untreated, strep can spread through your body and cause serious illness including rheumatic fever. If there’s any chance you have strep, don’t take any chances: Go straight to urgent care.