I’m sure that whenever you had a severe sore throat or strep throat, you might have tried a couple of home remedies to overcome the problem.
Undoubtedly, natural remedies are the safest and effective solutions for getting rid of a sore throat.
When it comes to the natural remedies, essential oils enjoy a pedestal position for the numerous therapeutic properties they contain.
Essential oils are organic compounds extracted from plants with numerous health and medicinal benefits. Aromatherapy is one of the highly established streams of natural remedies that make use of the essential oils for various treatments.
In this article you are going to read about the best essential oils for managing sore throat, cold, cough and strep throat effectively. You’ll also read about the best methods for using EOs effectively and the risks associated with EOs.
Before we proceed to discuss the best essential oils that can give you fast relief from sore throat, let us first discuss causes and symptoms of a sore throat.
Causes Of Sore Throat Or Strep Throat
Sore throat is a common infection that affects the throat at any time for a variety of reasons.
Sore throat is a condition marked by pain in the throat, typically caused by inflammation due to cold or other viruses .
When you have this throat infection, you might experience symptoms like pain, itchiness, and irritations in the throat .
In severe cases of throat infection, you might find difficulty in swallowing foods and liquids. Other symptoms of a severe strep throat disease are excessive dryness in throat, swollen glands in the neck, white patches on the tonsil and hoarseness [3,4].
Major causes of a sore throat are:
Viral Infection: Most cases of throat infections are caused by different types of viruses. Some of these viruses give rise to cold and flu as well. The most common cause of a sore throat is common cold or flu.
Bacterial Infection – Strep throat (Streptococcus Pyogenes) is caused by bacterial infections that affect the throat. Bacterial infections in the throat are also responsible for other diseases like whooping cough and diphtheria [5,6].
Yelling And Shouting Aloud: If you continuously shout or yell very loudly for a long time, you might end up contacting a sore throat. This usually occurs while are cheering for your favorite sports team or doing boisterous merrymaking in parties and picnics.
Allergies: If you are prone to getting nasal or throat allergies due to any reasons, it is quite possible that you contact sore throat from allergic reactions.
Other Diseases: Other diseases like gastroesophageal reflux, mono, croup, thrush, laryngitis, influenza, tonsillitis, gonorrhea, pharyngitis, or herpangina affecting the throat may cause a sore throat.
It is important to diagnose the exact reason for a sore throat before you start administering any remedies. If the throat pain lasts longer than usual, you must seek the help of a doctor to treat the issue.
External Factors: A sore throat can also be caused by external factors like inclement weather conditions, drinking ice-cold water or beverages, smoking, dust, swimming in cold water, or irregular lifestyle habits.
Now let us look at a few of the best essential oils that can expel the bacteria and viruses that cause soreness in the throat.
Top Essential Oils For Sore Throat
There are over a hundred types of essential oils (EOs) which are obtained from different plant sources. EOs have both health benefits and commercial usages.
Here is a list of best essential oils for strep throat and sore throat. These are some of the best oils that are known to have anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and soreness soothing properties.
Oregano oil has wide-reaching health benefits. It is a well-known remedy for respiratory and immune issues affecting the health.
Some of the studies have pointed out the high quality antiviral and antifungal properties present in this oil.
The antiviral properties in oregano essential oil can effectively eliminate the viruses that cause a sore throat.
According to one of the studies, this oil is useful for fighting parasite infection.
One of the recent health reports published by the Daily Mail, oregano oil is proved to be effective for killing the MRSA both as liquid and as a vapor. According to this report, tiny quantities of carvacrol, a naturally occurring compound in oregano, is proved to be a powerful antimicrobial agent; better than 18 pharmaceutical drugs which the investigators had chosen for comparative analysis.
Peppermint oil is one of the best-known folk medicine for curing sinus infection, whooping cough, common cold, inflammation in mouth and throat, and respiratory infections.
Peppermint essential oil is also an effective remedy for several other common health issues caused by a microbial infection like nausea, heartburn, irritable bowel syndrome, morning sickness, sour stomach, bacterial overgrowth in the intestine, and diarrhea.
Menthol is an organic compound found in peppermint. It produces a cooling and soothing effect in the sore throat.
Some of the research studies on peppermint have discovered the potential antimicrobial, decongestant properties and antioxidants present in the peppermint oil is effective for getting rid of a strep throat fast. The irritation and pain associated with the sore throat can be easily alleviated by the menthol contained in this oil [1,2].
Clove essential oil works great for relieving sore throat as this oil contains immune boosting properties that fight microbial infections.
Clove essential oil is good for strep throat, sore throat and other infections associated with the respiratory system because of the antifungal, antiseptic, antiviral and anti-inflammatory elements in this oil.
Clove essential oil also soothes the pain and irritation associated with sore throat.
According to one of the studies by Phytotherapy Research, clove oil is found possessing an antimicrobial ability that suppresses a variety of multi-resistant Staphylococcus epidermidis .
Clove oil is effective for relieving sore throat because of the powerful antiviral elements in it. This oil also helps to purify the blood and remove the toxins that cause inflammation.
Lemon oil has a high vitamin content which is useful for boosting the immune system of the body. Lemon oil has a substantial impact on stimulating the white blood cells in the blood which help in defending the body against common diseases like sore throat, influenza, viral fever, nausea, and other diseases.
This oil is excellent for cleansing the toxins in the body and beneficial for stimulating lymph drainage.
Sore throat and throat congestions can be effectively treated with lemon essential oil.
The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory elements in this oil help to resist the throat infection.
Vitamin C present in this oil is beneficial for increasing salivation and keeps the throat moist.
Thyme oil contains very strong antioxidants and antimicrobial properties. It is popularly used in treating various common diseases from ancient time.
This oil is effective for improving the immune system of the body. It also boosts the digestive and nervous systems of the body.
According to one of the studies, essential oil from thyme aids in the prevention and treatment of various microbial infections. The research showed that the essential oil from thyme exhibiting strong activity against all of the clinical strains.
Thyme oil has also shown substantial ability against antibiotic-resistant strains. No wonder why thyme oil should be part of your natural remedy regimen to fight common infections like the sore throat.
‘Cineole’ chemical present in eucalyptus oil has several proven medicinal benefits like fighting inflammation, pain relief, microbial infections. If that is the case, eucalyptus is oil should certainly work for the cold and sore throat.
This oil is a popular folk medicine with proven ability to give fast relief from common cold and cough.
According to a 2010 research, eucalyptus oil has antiviral and antimicrobial properties.
Some of the study results suggest that inhaling or oral use of eucalyptus oil with its main component, 8-cineole, can help safely fight viral infections and respiratory problems such as bronchitis, trachea, chest congestion, cough, wheezing, runny nose, and sore throat.
Eucalyptus oil is known to stimulate immunity, improve respiratory circulation and provide antioxidant protection to the body.
7. Juniper Berry
Juniper berry oil is known for its many health benefits.
The medicinal properties of this oil are effective for treating health issues related to respiration, stomach bloating, skin maladies, heartburn and common microbial infections.
Juniper berry essential oil is a very effective natural remedy for getting rid of sore throat. It can be effectively used for managing respiratory infection, fatigue, arthritis, and muscle pain.
One of the research reports has indicated that juniper berry essential oil contains over 87 different active constituent compounds useful for treating various health conditions. The major therapeutic qualities of this oil include antioxidants, antifungal, and antibacterial properties.
Hyssop essential oil is a highly valued therapeutic option for treating throat and chest inflammation, bronchial problems, and pleurisy.
Hyssop oil is very popular from the ancient Greece time for medicinal uses and purification of places of worship.
This oil contains antiseptic properties which are very useful for getting rid of viral and bacterial infections. Undoubtedly, hyssop oil is a fine choice for treating sore throat.
How To Use Essential Oils For Sore Throat
You might be just wondering how to make use of essential oils for curing sore throat and strep throat.
Aromatherapy extensively makes use of all kinds of essential oils for treating different diseases. Obviously, inhalation is one of the best ways to make use of EOs for treating throat infections.
Topical application of essential oils is utilized to get rid of pain and inflammation.
A few of the essential oils are worthy of internal consumption, which is required only if the microbial infections to be cured internally.
Let us now analyze in details the best ways to make use of essential oil for healing a sore throat.
1. Inhalation & Aromatherapy
Aromatherapy consists of inhaling the smell or aroma of the essential oils.
When you inhale the scent of the essential oil, the tiny molecules of the oil enter the nasal cavities and stimulate the nerves.
The limbic system of the brain stimulated by the aroma of the essential oil produces calming and soothing responses to the ailing part body and comforts the mind.
As a result of the aromatherapy effect, the brain begins to moderate the heart rate, blood pressure, and production of hormones.
For sore throat, inhaling the essential oil can provide a direct effect in suppressing the inflammatory activities of the microbial organism.
You can take the help of a vaporizer, humidifier, perfume sprayer, or diffuser for the inhaling the essential oil.
Direct inhalation is possible by taking two drops of your chosen essential oil in the palm of your hands; rub the palms together to spread the aroma of the oil. Then you can cup your palms over the nose and mouth and take 7-10 time deep inhalations.
Another method is to soak a cotton ball with few drops of essential oil and keep smelling it for a few minutes at regular intervals.
The result of aromatherapy varies from person to person. Most people do experience immediate effect with the aromatherapy for managing sore throat.
2. Essential Oil Diffusion
Diffusion is a prominent method in aromatherapy; this requires a diffuser.
This involves filling the air in your room with minute droplets of essential oil. So that the air you breathe inside the room contains the aroma and tiny particles of the essential oil.
Preferably, use the diffusion method in the bedroom before you go to sleep at night. This gives you better sleep and relieves your sore throat by constantly berating in the aroma of the essential oil.
3. Essential Oil Bath
The oil bath is a time-tested natural remedy for treating various diseases.
A blend of essential oils is dissolved in the warm water you use for bathing.
Soaking your body in this oil treated water, allows the essential oils to penetrate into your skin and blood vessels through the pores of the skin.
You can add a blend of different essential oils in the bath water to get the maximum benefit.
4. Oral Use
A few of the essential oils is suitable for internal consumption. However, it is important to make sure the safety consuming a particular essential oil of your choice.
Some of them are not fit for oral use as they can produce serious side effects if consumed orally. A few of the essential oils you buy from the counter are blended or diluted with synthetics or organic oils unsafe for consuming. Follow the warning and instructions on the bottle notified by the seller.
The essential oils are consumed by diluting 2-4 drops of the oil in a glass of warm water and drinking it.
For sore throat treatment, you can add two drops the best essential oil in one-half cup warm water and use it for deep throat gargling for few minutes. Repeat the gargling 3 to 5 times a day to get fast relief from strep throat.
Other oral application methods for using essential oils include using capsules, adding EOs to tea and beverages, and the foods you eat.
5. Topical Application
Topical application of the essential oils involves applying the oil on the disease affected area of the body and nerve ending points on different parts of the body.
Most of the essential oils contain powerful chemical properties in concentrated form. So they must be topically applied only after diluting them with mild carrier oils like olive, coconut, jojoba or sweet almond.
For the sore throat treatment, you can apply the blended oils or lotion directly on throat, neck or chest.
Gently massage the oil blend for a couple of minutes. Repeat the topical application 3 times a day.
Warnings And Risks Of Using Essential Oils For Sore Throat Treatment
There is no doubt that essential oils are great for getting rid of a sore throat fast. However, careless and random usage of essential oils can have adverse repercussions on health.
Here are a few tips and warning tips that must be kept in mind for the effective use of essential oils:
- Use only therapeutic grade essential oils for managing sore throat pain
- Dilute the essential oils with mild carrier oils before use;
- Inhalation and topical application of the EOs are safer than oral usage;
- Infants, children, pregnant women, seniors and people with severe illnesses should not use essential oils without the approval of physician;
- Choose the best essential oils that suit your sore throat symptoms.
NB: For severe sore throat problems with symptoms like fever, headaches, body pain or nausea must be treated under the supervision of a physician. Essential oils for treating sore throat are only an additional treatment option for soothing the discomfort associated with it. For fast relief from a sore throat, cold, cough, runny nose, flu or influenza you must take rest, plenty warm liquid, proper nutrition, gargling, and avoid everything that might aggravate the disease.
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