Multiple conditions may cause the sensation of burning in your throat. Let’s take a closer look at four of them, as well as what at-home and medical treatments can help you find relief.
Four Conditions That Can Cause a Throat-Burning Sensation
- Acid reflux. Reflux occurs when stomach acid flows up into the esophagus. When this happens regularly, it’s often referred to as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). It’s estimated that between 18.1-27.8% of people in the U.S. have GERD, though it may be higher. The most common symptom is heartburn. However, sometimes acid rises up to the throat and voice box. This is referred to as laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR). Many people with LPR don’t experience classic heartburn but rather a sore or burning throat as their primary symptom.
- Infections. Many viral infections can cause pain in the throat, in addition to symptoms like coughing, sneezing, nasal congestion and fever. Additionally, strep throat is a bacterial infection that can cause a severe sore throat or throat burning as well.
- Postnasal drip. Also referred to as upper airway cough syndrome, postnasal drip occurs when mucus and fluid from the sinuses and nose drain into the back of your throat. As the name suggests, people who have it can usually feel something dripping in their throat. This drainage can be irritating and cause a burning sensation. It is a symptom of many other conditions and can be caused by things like sinus infections, allergies and a deviated septum, among other things.
- Esophagitis. This condition is an inflammation of the esophagus and can cause throat burning. It’s often caused by GERD. However, it can also be caused by certain medications, infections, food allergies and as a side effect of radiation to the neck area.
What to Do?
If you have throat pain lasting for more than ten days or are experiencing a fever of 101 or higher for several days, call and make an appointment with your doctor. They will ask about your symptoms, examine your throat and order any additional testing if needed.
Depending on the cause, treatment options may include:
- Proton-pump inhibitors or other acid-reducing medication
- Advice on foods to include and those to avoid when shopping at the grocery store or Uptown Farmer’s Market to help reduce reflux symptoms
To learn more or to schedule an appointment to have your sore throat evaluated, call Arizona Desert Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists today.