Is ice a home remedy for a sore throat?

If you or your child’s throat becomes scratchy and swallowing becomes painful, you may have a sore throat. Throat surgery, viruses that can cause colds or flu, allergies or smoking are some causes of sore throat. Regardless of the cause, there are certain foods you can eat if you have a sore throat. Is ice cream one of them? Read on to find out if you can give your child ice cream as a home remedy for a sore throat.

What is a sore throat?

A sore throat is a common symptom of several conditions, often caused by viral or bacterial infections. It can also be due to environmental factors like dry air or irritants like smoke, says Dr. Jayanta Thakuria, an expert in internal medicine and rheumatology. The throat becomes inflamed and irritated, causing discomfort, pain and difficulty swallowing.

A sore throat can have several causes. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Can ice be good for a sore throat?

Ice managed to reduce some of the pain associated with tonsillectomy, according to a 2020 study published in the Cureus journal. While it may not be a cure, ice can indeed provide temporary relief, he says
Dr Thakuria. The cold temperature helps numb the throat, reducing pain and inflammation. Additionally, the smooth texture can be gentler on a sore and scratchy throat compared to coarse or spicy foods.

Types of ice are better for sore throats

With so many flavors and types of ice cream available on the market, it can be a little confusing when choosing the right ice cream. Choose creamy, softer varieties that are less likely to irritate the throat. Vanilla and other mild flavors are preferable, as strong and sour flavors such as citrus or chocolate can worsen irritation. Additionally, avoid ice creams with additives such as nuts or crunchy bits, which can further irritate the sensitive throat.

Girl eating ice cream
Is ice good for a sore throat? Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Tips to Cure Sore Throat

Ice can provide a wonderful refreshment, but it is not a cure for a sore throat. So, to really get to the root cause, consider these six effective ways:

• Provide plenty of fluids, such as warm water, herbal tea or soothing broth, to keep your child’s throat moist.
• Take a teaspoon of salt and put it in a glass of warm water and let your child gargle several times a day.
• Adding moisture to the air with a humidifier can prevent the throat from drying out, especially in places with dry climates or heated indoor areas.
• Give your child a break from talking, singing or whispering. Rest is crucial when it comes to the healing process.
• Use throat sprays or painkillers to relieve symptoms, but always follow recommended dosages.

If symptoms persist or worsen, contact a doctor who can determine whether an underlying infection requires specific treatment.

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It is also essential to take into account factors that can worsen the condition. Make sure your child is not exposed to secondhand smoke as it can irritate the throat and hinder the healing process. It may be difficult, but you should try to get your child to talk less. Excessive talking, shouting or singing with a sore throat can strain the vocal cords, prolonging recovery.

While ice may not be a miracle cure for a sore throat, it can certainly provide some comfort in the midst of discomfort. Combined with other remedies and conscious choices, you can navigate the scratches and pain, ensuring a smoother path to recovery.

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