Strep word cloud concept
Screenshot 2021-04-09 123124

Author’s Bio: Saher B.Haider has a Pharmacy degree and is a freelance writer in the health and wellness industry. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, cooking, and spending time with her family. 

Strep throat or acute pharyngitis is a common bacterial infection that causes inflammation in the throat and tonsils. The bacteria Streptococcus pyogenes (also known as Group A Streptococcus or ‘group A strep’) causes strep throat. The infection affects both children and adults alike, but it is more common amongst children.

What does strep throat look like?

One of the many symptoms of strep throat is a sore throat. A bacterial cause of sore throat looks very different from a viral cause. While your primary health care provider is the one who can spot the difference, strep throat usually appears as white dots or white patches at the back of your throat. The infection also affects your tonsils, and they might become red and swollen. If you or your loved one is diagnosed with strep throat, it is strongly advised to get treatment right away. Invasive Group A strep or GAS is a severe and life-threatening complication of strep throat.  In GAS, the germs spread from the throat and make their way into the body’s organs. People with invasive GAS will have low immunity and are, therefore, prone to other infections. According to the CDC, GAS affects about 11,000 t0 24,000 Americans every year. Moreover, the infection roughly accounts for 1200 to 1900 deaths annually.

Strep throat symptoms

Understanding the signs of strep throat can help you figure out whether you have a common cold, a viral or bacterial infection. Your health care provider can easily identify strep throat by examining your mouth and running down a swab test to see whether or not the Group A strep is causing the infection. In most cases, strep throat symptoms start to appear two to five days after exposure to the bacteria. Following are the common strep throat symptoms:
  • Moderate fever up to 101 degrees F
  • Sore throat
  • White patches or spots on the throat
  • Red, swollen tonsils
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Difficulty in swallowing food
  • Loss of appetite
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Weakness

How long does strep throat last?

Once you have contracted the infection, it usually stays for 3 to 7 days. With the right treatment and care, strep throat typically goes away within a week.

Is strep throat contagious?

Yes – strep throat is extremely contagious. The germs in strep throat are airborne. When an infected person coughs or sneezes near you, you may get the infection. You can also get the infection through surfaces or objects having Strep A germs. If you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth after touching any of the items, such as countertops, doorknobs, chairs, etc., containing these germs, you too will have strep throat. As well, sharing food and other edibles with an infected person can also get you strep throat.

How to get rid of strep throat?

Once your health care provider has confirmed that you have strep throat, you should start your treatment right away. You can check with our online consultation team to get treatment online. Since strep throat is a bacterial infection, your health care provider will suggest antibiotic treatment. Based on your history and presence of drug allergies, our doctor will advise you any of the following prescription/medication available online:  
  • Penicillin
  • Amoxicillin
  • Azithromycin
These antibiotics not only help you in getting rid of strep throat quicker, but they also prevent long-term complications and help limit its spread to your family and friends.

Home remedies

Apart from antibiotic treatment, you can also try certain home remedies to minimize pain and discomfort in strep throat.

Following are some home-based remedies that can help:
  • Drink plenty of water and warm fluids such as tea and broths
  • Take over-the-counter analgesics such as acetaminophen for pain relief.
  • Try sucking on throat lozenges to minimize irritation and keep your throat moist.
  • Saline gargles by mixing half a teaspoon of salt into a cup of warm water.

Strep throat prevention

Like most other infections, the spread of strep throat infection can be limited by taking a few precautionary measures:

  • Practice personal hygiene by washing hands regularly with soap and water. In case you can’t find water, always keep a hand sanitizer with you. 
  • Avoid sharing food when someone in your family has strep throat.
  • Do not share towels, pillows, blankets, and similar personal items with others when you have strep throat.
  • People with strep throat should avoid going to work, school, or college until their fever subsides.

Online consultation for Strep throat

If you or someone in your family suffer from strep throat symptoms, feel free to talk about it and seek help immediately. At Home Urgent Care provides telemedicine services so you can safely and confidently keep your health in check with our primary and urgent care services and get treatment online.  Feel free to book an appointment today with our health experts available at your convenience 365 days a year and get your prescription/medication available online.

Book an Appointment

Online Doctor Appointment - At Home Urgent Care

Step 1

Call or Book your online Doctor Visit

Online Doctor Appointment - At Home Urgent Care

Step 2

Talk to a doctor over the Phone/ Tablet

Online Doctor Appointment - At Home Urgent Care

Step 3

If needed pick up your medication at the pharmacy


  1. Health line. “Everything You Need To Know About Strep Throat.” August 30, 2019. January 14, 2021.
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Pharyngitis (Strep throat).” November 01, 2018. January 14, 2021.
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Strep throat: All you need to know.” January 12, 2021. January 14, 2021.
  4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Group A Streptococcal (GAS) Disease.” November 01, 2018. January 14, 2021.
  5. Health line. “How Many Days Does It Take to Recover from a Sore Throat?” October 23, 2018. January 14, 2021.
  6. Health line. “How Long Is Strep Throat Contagious?” April 22, 2019. January 14, 2021.
  7. Web MD. “Strep throat treatment.” January 14, 2021.