Itchy Throat: Causes, Home Remedy, Treatment, Prevention

Itchy Throat: An Overview

The slight itch in your throat can cause immense discomfort. Even swallowing water or food can become a trying task if you have a sore or itchy throat. An itchy throat is a classic symptom of allergies, an allergic reaction, or an impending illness. Irritating substances inhaled can irritate your throat, making it scratchy and uncomfortable.

Now almost everyone suffers from itching throats at some point in their lives. Itching throat is a common symptom of hay fever and other allergies, and it may also be the first sign of a viral or bacterial infection. You can treat most itchy throats with over-the-counter (OTC) medications and home remedies.

In this article, you will learn more about what causes an itchy throat, its home remedies and other treatments, and preventive measures.

Itchy Throat At Night

It is common to have a dry, itchy throat at night. It is because your body’s natural reaction throughout the day is to swallow frequently, which aids in the drainage of nasal mucus down your nose and throat. As a result, when you lie down in bed at night to sleep, it becomes more difficult for your body to clear your airways naturally, and mucus can accumulate in your throat. It usually forces you to breathe through your mouth, which causes the back of your throat to become dry.

However, it should not be a daily or nightly occurrence. What causes dry throat, can it progress to something more serious, is dry throat snoring a thing, and how do you deal with it? Below is the link to an article that tells you how to get rid of a sore throat at night.

Related Blog: How to get rid of itchy throat at night?

Itchy Throat: Causes

One of the most common causes of an itchy throat is allergies. An allergic reaction occurs when a substance known as an allergen causes your immune system to react.

The following are some examples of common allergy triggers that can cause an itchy throat:

  • dehydration
  • acid reflux
  • medication side effects
  • dust
  • animal dander
  • foods, such as peanut butter, dairy, or strawberries
  • pollen, found in trees, grass, or ragweed
  • mold

Allergies can range in severity from mild to severe. An itchy throat may indicate a moderate but still unpleasant allergic reaction. Pollutants in the air can also cause a scratchy throat. These could include:

  • tobacco smoke or vapor
  • chemicals
  • pesticides
  • cleaning products

Infections such as with the common cold or strep throat can begin with an itchy throat and progress to soreness and pain. So, you need to know the symptoms of an itching throat for you to receive the correct treatment at the earliest.

Itchy Throat: Related Symptoms

If you feel the need to clear your throat frequently, it can be one of the signs of an itchy throat. Other than discomfort, the most known signs or symptoms of the itchy throat include the following:

  • Itchy
  • Swollen
  • Scratchy

However, it is critical to differentiate between the symptoms of an itchy throat and those of other conditions. An itching throat, for example, does not feel rough or raw, nor does it make you feel as if you can’t breathe.

Itchy Throat: Prevention Tips

You can avoid an itchy throat by avoiding known allergy triggers. Take precautions to dodge infection, such as frequently washing your hands. It can aid in the prevention of itching throats caused by common colds, strep throat, or other infectious causes.

If you regularly experience an itching throat, you can make some lifestyle changes to reduce the frequency and duration of your discomfort. It includes the following:

  • You can quit smoking to reduce the frequency of itchy throat.
  • Always stay hydrated at all times of the day and night.
  • You should limit or avoid caffeine intake.
  • You can either limit or avoid alcohol intake.
  • You can restrain yourself from opening windows or going outside during allergy season.
  • You can wash your hands often during cold and flu season.

Itchy Throat: Treatments & Medicine

Although the symptoms of allergies and colds are frequently similar, their causes are not. As a result, you require different strategies to prevent allergies that cause an itchy throat. To avoid the unpleasant symptoms of a cold or allergies, avoid allowing any of the many common cold viruses to enter your body. And stay as far away from anyone who is showing signs and symptoms of allergies as possible.

While these preventive measures will help you avoid an itchy throat altogether, sometimes when you cannot prevent it, you need to ensure you get proper treatment before it aggravates. Always consult your doctor before taking any medications that you can purchase without a prescription at a drugstore. It is especially vital if you take prescription medications to avoid potential drug interactions. While there is no known cure for an itchy throat, there are some things you can do to alleviate your symptoms and discomfort. You can request the following medications from your doctor and only take them if prescribed.

  • Antihistamines: They block the effect of histamines, thus reducing the itchiness.
  • Decongestants: They reduce any swelling in the mucus membrane within the nasal passages.
  • Anti-inflammatories or pain relievers: These medications ease your aches, pains, or fever.


Home Remedies For Itchy Throat

The goal of treating an itchy throat is to alleviate the discomfort, irritation, and pain in the affected area until the condition heals. Itchy and sore throat home remedies aim to reduce inflammation and irritation of the throat and secondary symptoms such as coughing.

Here are a few home remedies for Itchy throat:

  • Cough drops or lozenges

Cough drops get commonly used to relieve throat itchiness or soreness. To extend the time between cough drops or lozenges, try sucking on sweet hard candies. It will allow you to reap the benefits of oral menthol without going overboard.

  • Hot tea or soup

It is critical to stay hydrated to aid your body’s healing process. Drinking plenty of liquids can help keep your mucus membranes clear, preventing unpleasant buildup in your throat. Sipping on a comfortably warm drink is an easy way to stay hydrated while potentially reducing throat irritation.

  • Honey

While hot tea with honey gets used as a cough suppressant and sore throat reliever, plain honey can also be effective. Two teaspoons of honey may be as effective as some cough medications in relieving throat irritation and coughing.

  • Humidifiers

A humidifier can help if your itchy throat gets caused by dry air or allergies. When you breathe, increasing the humidity in the air keeps your throat from drying out as much. It also prevents mucus from drying out and irritating the back of your throat, which can cause itchiness or coughing.

  • Saltwater Gargling

Gargling with saltwater is most effective for sore or itchy throats caused by bacteria or viruses. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt to 240 mL (1 cup) warm water and gargle with the saltwater mixture several times per day. The heat may relieve throat irritation, and the salt may aid in mucus removal.

Foods To Avoid When You Have An Itchy Throat

You should avoid foods that may irritate your throat or make swallowing difficult. Dairy may thicken or increase mucus production in some people. It may cause you to clear your throat more frequently, aggravating your sore or itchy throat. So, avoid eating the following foods to ensure that you do not cause any more discomfort to your throat and help relieve its symptoms.

  • spicy seasonings and sauces
  • crackers
  • sodas
  • crusty bread
  • alcohol
  • coffee
  • acidic fruits, such as oranges, lemons, lime, tomatoes, and grapefruits
  • dry snack foods, such as potato chips, pretzels, or popcorn
  • fresh, raw vegetables

Difference Between Itchy Throat & Sore Throat

A burning sensation or itchiness in the back of your throat, pain (especially when swallowing), and possibly tenderness along your neck is the classic symptoms of a sore throat. You may also feel like sneezing or coughing, have a mild fever, runny nose, or general fatigue accompanying your sore throat.

The table below outlines the differences between an itchy and sore throat with their respective symptoms, causes, and treatment methods.

Problem Itchy Throat Sore Throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Sinus
  • Itchy eyes and skin
  • Sneezing
  • Swollen, watery eyes
  • Pain or scratchy sensation
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Sore, swollen glands
  • Swollen, red tonsils
  • White patches on tonsils
  • Allergic rhinitis
  • Food allergies
  • Drug allergies
  • Bacterial or viral infections
  • Dehydration
  • Bacterial or viral infections
  • Allergies
  • Muscle strain
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • Irritants
Treatment/Home Remedies
  • Cough drops or lozenges
  • Hot tea or soup
  • Honey
  • Humidifiers
  • Saltwater gargling
  • Drink fluids
  • Saltwater gargle
  • Antibiotics
  • Cool-air humidifiers
  • Lozenges or hard candy

When To Call A Doctor For Itchy Throat?

An itchy throat does not always necessitate a visit to the doctor. Most of the time, the throat responds well to self-care. If symptoms persist for more than ten days, worsen, or do not respond to self-care, a person should consult a doctor. If you have an itchy throat and any of the following symptoms, you should see a doctor right away:

  • trouble breathing
  • hives
  • wheezing
  • fever
  • difficulty swallowing
  • facial swelling
  • a severe sore throat

Any of the situations listed above may necessitate immediate medical attention, treatment with antibiotics or antiviral medication, or management of severe allergies.

Itchy Throat: Related FAQs

Q1: How to sleep with an itchy throat?
If you have an itchy throat, make sure you keep yourself well hydrated at all times. When you sleep at night, sleep at an incline and avoid lying down on your back. It will give you some relief and control the itchiness in your throat.

Q2: How to relieve itchy throat from allergies?
Allergies can cause discomfort, and sometimes you may need over-the-counter medications to cure your itchy throat. However, whether it’s nasal sprays or other medicines, make sure you get a prescription from your doctor. Alternatively, you can try home remedies like salt water gargles, honey, and drinking hot fluids.

Q3: How to treat itchy throat at home?
You can use at-home remedies to treat itchy throats, such as honey, saltwater gargles, chamomile tea, apple cider vinegar, milk and turmeric, and ginger tea with lemon and honey. These home remedies will offer you relief from itchy throat and other allergy symptoms.

Q4: Does itchy throat make you cough?
Sometimes an itchy throat can be accompanied by a dry cough. The tickle in the back of your throat due to dryness and other factors can cause cough. Keep drinking hot fluids and water to keep yourself hydrated and get relief from itchy throat and cough.

Q5: Is itchy throat a sign of flu?
Yes, it can be. The cause of an itchy throat usually is a sign of allergies or an allergic reaction. Therefore, to prevent the occurrence of allergies and subsequent flu, you should keep yourself indoors and sanitize at all times, especially during the flu season.

Q6: Is itchy throat a sign of Covid-19?
Some allergy symptoms like an itchy throat remain closely related to COVID-19. However, there are some key differences to be aware of to stay prepared. It’s also worth noting that symptoms can vary. Some seasonal allergy symptoms other than itchy throat include headache, coughing, sneezing, nasal congestion, and itchy eyes. Covid-19 symptoms, on the other hand, include cough, fever, loss of taste and smell, body aches or chills, shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, diarrhea, sore throat, and nausea.

Fever, dry cough, loss of taste or smell, body aches or chills, and shortness of breath are all common COVID-19 symptoms. Is itchy throat a symptom of coronavirus? The answer is most likely no. It is rarely a symptom and is most common in people who suffer from seasonal allergies.


If you have an itchy throat, many doctors and healthcare professionals recommend several popular home remedies. Always consult your doctor before beginning any alternative medications. If self-care does not work for you, see a doctor for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

Aims Healthcare’s Doctor on Call service in Dubai makes sure you are in safe hands and get the best possible treatment for your problem in the comfort of your home, hotel, or office. If you wish to opt for personalized medical care, comprehensive diagnosis, and treatment, our DHA-licensed doctors and professionals will make sure you get the best-suited treatment. For more information, Get in touch at at +971 458 26 555 or fill out the contact form for more information.

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