When your child has a sore throat, it is most often caused by a virus. However, in some cases, bacteria can cause strep throat, requiring antibiotics to help them overcome the symptoms. Let’s take a look at some of the important things you need to know to manage a case of strep throat and how your local pharmacy in Powell, TN, might be able to help you.

What is Strep Throat?

Strep throat is a bacterial infection, most commonly seen in children, which is characterized by a painful and itchy throat and tonsils. It is caused by the group A streptococcus bacteria, sometimes known as Streptococcus pyogenes. It lives in the nose and throat and is passed via direct contact or respiratory droplets created by an infected person talking, coughing, or sneezing. If you suspect strep throat, you can have a test done at your local pharmacy in Powell, TN.

How Do You Catch Strep Throat?

Strep throat is more common in children, affecting 3 in every ten children suffering from a sore throat. In comparison, only 1 in 10 adults with a sore throat will have strep throat. It is highly contagious and will spread rapidly in group settings such as schools, daycare centers, and military facilities. The main ways that it will spread is through respiratory droplets or direct contact. However, it can also be transmitted through incorrect food handling in rare cases. After exposure to the bacteria, symptoms will start to manifest within 3 to 5 days.

Suppose someone in your household has strep throat. In that case, you can try to minimize the spread by not using the same cups, plates, and utensils without thoroughly cleaning them first, using tissues when coughing or sneezing, frequent hand washing, and wiping down surfaces that may be contaminated with an anti-bacterial cleaning product. All these supplies can be picked up at your local pharmacy in Powell, TN.

What Are The Main Symptoms of Strep Throat?

In most cases, strep throat is a reasonably mild condition, although it can escalate to rheumatic fever if not treated appropriately. Even in mild cases, strep throat can be incredibly painful. Some of the most common symptoms will include the following:

  • Fever
  • Pain while swallowing
  • Sudden onset of throat pain, which may also be red in appearance
  • Swollen tonsils, which may appear red and may have white patches or pus
  • Swollen lymph nodes at the front of the neck
  • Petechiae, which are tiny red spots on the roof of the mouth

Some of the less common symptoms may include stomach pain, headache, and nausea. It is also worth noting that if a rash is present, the same bacteria that causes strep throat can also cause scarlet fever. If you have a cough, runny nose, or conjunctivitis, it is unlikely that you have strep throat, as these symptoms suggest a virus rather than a bacterial infection. Diagnosing strep throat with a quick examination and a throat swab is easy. Your doctor can do this, or you can stop by your local pharmacy in Powell, TN, for testing. Antibiotics will be prescribed to combat the bacteria if the test is positive.

Treating Strep Throat

As noted, when you or your child test positive for strep throat, a course of antibiotics must be prescribed. These will help prevent the bacteria from spreading, avoid complications, and shorten the time the patient is sick. There should be a notable improvement within 48 hours of taking the antibiotics; if not, you should consult your doctor. Infected individuals should stay at home until the fever is gone and they have been on antibiotics for a minimum of 48 hours. However, depending on symptoms, you may wish to take longer to recover. In addition to the antibiotic treatment, ask your local pharmacy in Powell, TN, about medications to help relieve the symptoms, including pain relief and fever relievers.

Are There Complications?

Strep throat is usually a mild condition, albeit painful, and in most cases, it will clear up quickly with the help of oral antibiotics. However, if left untreated, the bacteria can spread to other areas of the body, resulting in potential complications. Some of the most common complications associated with untreated strep throat include the following:

  • Abscesses on the tonsils
  • Sinus infections
  • Ear infections
  • Rheumatic fever (affecting the heart, joints, brain, and skin)
  • Post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis (affecting the kidneys)

If you suspect that you or your child may have strep throat, stop by your local pharmacy in Powell, TN, where we can perform a throat swab and give advice on the next steps to take, including the best over-the-counter medications to treat your symptoms.

Your Hometown Pharmacy Since 1966

Vaughn Pharmacy is a local, family-owned pharmacy serving the community in Powell, TN. Specializing in providing personalized and attentive prescription programs to our patients, we believe you are more than just a number – you’re part of our family!


(865) 947-1581