You feel it coming on – that scratchy feeling in your throat. Colds and sore throats are normal this time of year, but when you’re pregnant,it’s not just your health that’s at stake – you worry about your baby’s health, too.
And sore throats can be caused by more than just a cold. Asthma, allergies, acid reflux, pollutants, chemicals, and bacterial or fungal infections can all irritate the throat, causing pain.
The good news is that even a sore throat during early pregnancy shouldn’t cause harm to your baby. It’s highly likely that you’ll catch an ordinary cold during your pregnancy. In fact, most people catch four or more per year. And if you’re around small children, you may catch colds more often.
Most of the causes of sore throats (with the exception of infections) are generally mild and harmless, although you should see your doctor just to make sure. There’s no need to panic about a sore throat (in most cases), but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer through it. If you’re pregnant, these 6 sore throat remedies can help you find some relief.
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6 Sore Throat Remedies during Pregnancy
Being pregnant is tough. Being pregnant and having a sore throat is even tougher. These 6 remedies can give you some much-needed relief and are mild enough for pregnant moms to use.
1. Honey Lemon Tea
One of the most popular and effective remedies for a sore throat is a big cup of hot honey lemon tea. The honey helps coat the throat, while the lemon helps kill bacteria and clear away mucous.
To make your relieving tea, simply boil water in a tea kettle or pot, and pour into a mug. Add honey and the juice of one lemon. Stir and enjoy!
Remember: Give the tea some time to cool before drinking – it can be very hot.
For extra soothing relief, try adding fresh mint leaves to your tea.
2. Steam and Humidifiers
Sometimes, sore throats are caused by dry air, which is common in the winter. A humidifier can help replenish moisture in the air, and provide you with much-needed relief in a safe, gentle way.
Moist air keeps your mucous membranes moist, so your symptoms disappear along with your dry throat. Try adding a humidifier to your bedroom or living room to add moisture to the air.
Steam can also have a similar effect, and is a great alternative if you don’t have a humidifier. Simply boil a large pot of water on the stove until it starts producing steam. Breathe in the steam, allowing the pot to continue to boil. The steam will add moisture to the air.
Tip: Please stand a safe distance from the pot. Placing your face or any part of your body too close to the steam can burn your skin.
3. Salt Water Gargle
A simple salt water gargle is safe for pregnant women, and it can work wonders for sore throats. The water hydrates membranes in the throat, while the salt soothes irritation.
Add one tsp. of salt to 8 oz. of warm water, and gargle.
That’s all there is to it. Doctors recommend gargling at least once per hour, so this remedy is best suited for pregnant women who are at home.
4. Stay Hydrated
Physicians recommend increasing your fluid intake anytime you come down with a cold, cough or sore throat. Fluids help to thin out mucous and flush out toxins while keeping membranes hydrated.
If your sore throat is caused by a cold, you should know that increased mucous production leeches extra fluids from your body, and those fluids need to be replaced.
Even if your sore throat is caused by dry air or irritants in the air, staying hydrated can help alleviate symptoms while ridding your body of any irritants that may be causing inflammation.
5. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile is a natural sore throat remedy, and because it’s an herbal tea (i.e. caffeine-free), it’s generally safe for pregnant women to drink. Not only can chamomile help kill bacteria, it also works as a natural pain-reliever by alleviating inflammation and soothing irritation.
Chamomile tea is one of the most effective ways to maximize the benefits of this flower. Simply boil 1 cup of water, add a chamomile teabag, and let it steep for at least 5 minutes. Add honey for a little sweetness and extra relief.
Some chamomile teas contain other herbs, so be sure to read the ingredients label carefully. Certain herbs are not ideal for pregnant women to consume, so only choose products that contain only chamomile flowers.
Always consult with your doctor before drinking herbal teas, including chamomile.
6. Ginger Tea
Tea is one of the best remedies for sore throats, but as a pregnant woman, you have to take care to avoid teas that contain caffeine. Chamomile and the honey/lemon mixture we listed above are two great options, but ginger tea is also an excellent remedy for sore throats.
And as an added bonus, it will also provide you with nausea relief. If you’re still battling morning sickness, you can kill two birds with one stone by drinking this soothing tea. Ginger has natural antibacterial and antifungal properties. It eases inflammation, too, which can provide you with the pain relief you crave. On top of all this, this potent herb can also clear away excess mucus while boosting circulation and making it easier for your body to flush out toxins.
Simply boil a cup of water, add about an inch of fresh ginger (peel it first), steep for 5 minutes, and enjoy. Add a teaspoon of honey for sweetness and to coat the throat. Feel free to also add a sprig of fresh mint for extra flavor and soothing relief.
These 6 remedies can help you kick that sore throat to the curb. While most sore throats are nothing to worry about, you should see your doctor if it persists for several days or you develop symptoms of the flu, such as a high fever and extreme fatigue. The flu can be dangerous for your baby, so see your doctor right away if you develop flu-like symptoms along with your sore throat.