A sore throat is usually due to acute tonsillitis or acute pharyngitis although in some cases acid reflux can be the primary cause.
Acute tonsillitis affects mainly the sides of the throat and can be caused by viruses and/or bacteria. Usually associated with a fever, halitosis, pain on swallowing, enlarged red inflamed tonsils, tender swollen neck glands with patients feeling generally sick and unwell. Acute pharyngitis, which affects the centre of the back of the throat as well as the sides, is usually caused by a virus.
Bad Breath (Halitosis)
Bad breath is commonly caused by acute or chronic throat infections, often with a post-nasal drip and poor mouth or dental hygiene. It may also be due to dietary factors, such as eating Highly aromatic foods or, in some cases, insufficient food leading to the formation of ketones in the stomach
Loss of Taste
Taste refers to the ability to sense sweet, salty, bitter and sour characteristics and is virtually impossible to lose completely. It is often confused with flavour, which is the combination of taste (20%) and smell (80%). When patients complain of a taste disturbance, a smell disorder is usually the actual problem.
Noisy breathing can occur during the day and night or only during sleep (snoring).
Snoring is noisy breathing, during sleep, and can be very loud. It is more common in overweight and older people. As we age, the throat muscles become floppy when breathing in. Snoring may be associated with obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA), a condition in which breathing stops frequently causing temporary, partial suffocation.
A cough is a protective reflex caused by irritation of the lining mucosa in the voice box (larynx) or windpipe (trachea). Sudden expulsion of air from the lungs at high speeds of up to 80 mph clears mucus or foreign material from the airway. A chronic cough may occur if there is persistent local inflammation or a tumour.
Hoarseness is a change in voice quality caused by abnormal vocal cord vibration.
Common causes include viral laryngitis and overuse, when even mild degrees of vocal cord swelling affect the normal mucosal wave pattern. These conditions usually respond quickly to voice rest, humidification and sometimes antibiotics.
Adenoids are small glands in the throat at the back of the nose which fight germs in young children. After the age of about three years, the adenoids are no longer required.
Some children have adenoids so big they have a blocked nose and have to breathe through their mouths and snore at night. Sometimes they stop breathing, for a few seconds, while they are asleep. The adenoids can also cause ear problems by blocking the tube which joins your nose to your ear. For children over three years of age, removing the adenoid at the same time as putting grommets in the ears seems to help stop the glue ear coming back. Removing the adenoids may also make colds blocking the nose less of a problem for your child.
Tonsils are small glands in the throat, one on each side which fight germs in young child although from the age of three onwards, the tonsils become less important in fighting germs and usually shrink.
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