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Sore Throat Cures

Last Modified on Mar 25, 2014

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Approval Ratings
YEA (1)

[YEA]  11/23/2009: Maribel from El Paso, Tx: "****** BLUBERRIES SOOTH A SORE THROAT ON CONTACT***

This was purely trial and error.

I woke up with a terribly sore and scratchy throat yesterday morning. I'd already read about the benefits of gargling with ACV and warm water and honey... I had also seen other approaches at combatting a sore throat...

But none seemed to offer a temporary natural pain relief -- and Voila! I stumbled upon this one purely by surprise.

I was too tired to go to the supermarket to buy cough drops or whatever, so I looked to my freezer and fridge and pantry for any source of antioxidants i could consume to get rid of this cold altogether.

I found a bag of frozen blueberries that i had their to make smoothies. Well, I allowed these blueberries to thaw from their frozen state. Then as i was watching t.v. I was just scooping these berries (now at room temperature in my mouth) hey, good source of vitamin C and antioxidants, right?

WELL ... to my surprise not even 10 minutes later my sore throat was GONE. I KID YOU NOT!

GONE GONE GONE. I finally decided to do an internet search under blueberries and sore throats, and apparently they have proven to soothe sore throats (who woulda thought??)

Take it from me, it worked even much faster than an Ibuprofen, or an analgasec would. Hooray for Blueberries!!! "


Approval Ratings
YEA (1)

[YEA]  12/21/2012: Steve from Epsom, Surrey England: "Thought I'd share this adult remedy that I've used for 20 years. If you've got a sore throat coming on....... Gargle with Brandy 3 or 4 times in one night (not cheap supermarket brand stuff because I've tried that and it doesn't work). The next day your throat will be gone."

Carrot Juice

Approval Ratings
YEA (1)

[YEA]  06/10/2008: Hope from Inverness, FL: "The best way to get rid of a sore throat is to drink fresh carrot juice (as much as possible) and within a day or two, it should be gone. You can buy it at your local health store or juice the carrots yourself if you have a juicer. The problem with this, however, is it can be costly and time consuming (if you are using a juicer). So here is another option that I do a lot (and also use it for my daughter). I use a homeopathic "cold remedy". You can buy it at your local health store or buy it online. You have to follow the instructions just like it says. Sometimes, you have to take the "pill" once every 2 hours and sometimes it will be once every 15 minutes until it subsides... and then an hour or two thereafter till it goes away. For me, the homeopathic cold remedy works usually within 2 days... but again, you need to be religious about taking the pills.

06/08/2012: V from Poughkeepsie, New York replies: "One note on this, you can avoid all that by just chewing fresh well washed and skinned carrots til they give you all the juice, then eating the pulp is up to you, I say why not but in this case you could always put half in the compost pile."

Castor Oil Packs

Approval Ratings
YEA (1)

[YEA]  Morgan from Vancouver: "If I am getting a sore throat, I find that doing a castor oil pack on my throat works very well. Usually what i do is before I go to bed, I spread the castor oil on my throat and neck, tie a flannel scarf around my neck, and dose off. My sore throat is gone by morning, and I notice that this also greatly reduces the swelling of my lymph glands on my neck. Bon chance!"


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Cayenne Pepper Sore Throat Remedy

Home Remedy Ingredients:

  • Cayenne Pepper - 1 teaspoon
  • Warm Water - Small Glass

Far and away the most popular sore throat remedy. Add a teaspoon of powdered cayenne pepper to a glass of warm water and repeatedly gargle with it. Sore throat pain vanishes, and other cold-like symptoms improve as well! (If your lips are raw, put on a little chapstick first to protect them.)

EC Contributor Instructions:

Penny from Fresno, California: "If it is too late, as in strep, it takes gargling with cayenne in water every fifteen minutes until it goes, and be patient, because it GOES. I haven't had a sore throat take hold in 15 years or more, though many have tried to start up, which also is a way for many illnesses to sprout. I generally will gargle cayenne in water at whatever strength I like and do it as much as I can until I tire of it, and then repeat every fifteen minutes, each time swallowing a tiny bit real slowly (not necessary). It only stings the tongue a little when spitting out, otherwise, no discomfort, you can get used to even the swallowing part when you see how well it works. I use the cheap Mexican stuff, but also keep on hand in refrigerator the pesticide free stuff from health store. Cayenne is a miracle cure for ulcers and so many other conditions, plus aids assimilation of nutrients and vitamins. I will keep cayenne in water in the bathroom in case I get up in the night, so I can gargle once in the night if I am very sick, but if it is in water, it will go bad quickly and needs to be put back in refridge in morning. Afterwards suck on a clove (see below). I have never seen a sore throat that won't succumb to it."

Cayenne doesn't always work within the first hour or two. If you've had a sore throat for days, you will need to keep up the gargling for at least one day if not two. Your lingering sore throat will disappear. Many of the folks who reported a NAY rating in the Cayenne section are reporting negative results after a very short period of time.

[YEA]  12/11/2013: Gina from Montana, Usa: "I woke up yesterday morning with a wicked bad sore throat that has been going around my kid's school. I saw the cayenne cure for sore throats and immediately started gargling with it. Not a fun burn, but it definitely worked! I did it 3 times yesterday - a few shakes of cayenne in hot water - and then once this morning and my sore throat is gone! Hopefully I kicked the virus out of my body too."

[YEA]  10/01/2013: Wendy from Westport, Ct: "I started getting a sore throat yesterday afternoon and promptly looked on Earth Clinic for remedies. I couldn't believe how many people tried gargling cayenne pepper for a sore throat! Amazing. I added a few shakes of cayenne to a small amount of warm water and gargled with it. Spit it out, took a breather and gargled again. My sore throat felt better an hour after that. I did it again last night before going to bed and woke up this morning with no throat pain. YEA!"

[YEA]  03/26/2013: Sore Throat from Land Of, Oz: "This is almost immediate relief... I have one of the worst sore throats I have ever had. I tried tea with honey, smoothies with lots of antioxidants but the gargle with cayenne, salt and I used some raw honey. I gargled and swallowed."

[YEA]  03/14/2013: Mary from Denver, Co: "Wow! It worked- cayenne pepper 2 tbsp, 1 tbsp acv, honey and warm water.. 50 min later I feel more alive than I have in the past 2 days being sick--- it burns my chest a little but the sore throat is going away and my energy is going way up!"

04/21/2013: Doddie from Lawrenceville, Georgia, Usa replies: "Mary, are you sure you used 2 tablespoons of cayenne pepper or was it 2 teaspooons ? I did not do it because I thought it was a bit too much so I used a teaspoon. Please let me know because I will use the 2T if I have to. Also did you just gargle with it or did you swallow it all. With 2Tlbs. how often did you have to do this. Thank you for your response, Clara"

[YEA]  03/04/2013: Theresa from Valparaiso, In: "I've had a killer sore throat--so bad that it kept me up 2 nights back--for a few days now. Honey, hot tea, etc etc have not been working for this one this time. So here I am and found this cayenne tip. WOW! I put 1 tsp in about 8oz of warm water and IMMEDIATELY my pain was gone. It's starting to make a slight return as I expected with this severe of discomfort, but I plan on gargling for a few times every hour until this subsides."

[YEA]  06/03/2012: Sebastian from Melbourne, Australia: "After coming down with a sore throat and chest cough, I tried every possible remedy I was recommended. For two days waking up every two hours with the worst throat and then losing my voice I tried betadine throat gargle, honey and lemon, lozenges, warm salty water and paracetamol. All these treatments would have an effect for a short term so I thought I would at least try cayenne pepper.

After mixing 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 lemon in 1/2 a cup of water and gargling every 15 min for 2 hours and then the rest every so often for the rest of the day, I wake up with no sore throat.

I would say to anyone before you go and spend a load of money on antibiotics give this a go and you may be as plesantly suprised as I was. I still have the cough and heavy chest but gone are the razor blades in my throat."

[NAY]  07/01/2012: Cooper from Arvada, Colorado replies: "not a good idea to use this. Started getting a sore throat and heard about this remedy so I tried it. I used half a teaspoon of cayenne with two tablespoons of warm water and gargled. With how hot the cayenne was I spit it out immidiately and it left my throat burning worse then before. do not use unless you have a very high heat tolerance in your throat and mouth."
07/02/2012: Anja from Jacksonville, Florida replies: "My family and I use cayenne for sore throat but we don't start out with a half teaspoon. We put a very small amount ( a pinch ) and increase it if it is not strong enough. It should be hot and burn especially if your throat is already sore but it wears off quickly and then your throat feels better than before, approx half hour. You repeat this every few hours for about 24 hours and you should be feeling a whole lot better. We usually don't have a need for it after that. On the flip side, I have used cayenne for pain. You just have to handle the initial heat."
07/02/2012: Mia from Lyons, Ny replies: "If you must, start out with less. It may burn but the cure certainly works. It cured me of the worst strep throat I'd ever had. My glands were so swollen, which caused extreme neck pain, it made me want to cry. Twelve hours after the first dose was I was almost completely well. Two days after that it was completely gone never to return and it's been two years since. Definitely don't knock cayenne. It works."
[YEA]  07/15/2012: Jeegen from Pleasant Ridge, Michigan replies: "I have been suffering from a sore throat now for five days, but the last two nights have been unbearable, tossing and turning, coughing, waking up my spouse, etc. This morning I couldn't speak. I rarely get sick or have sore throats, but this is awful. I just tried the above remedy, not 20 minutes ago and my pain has halved and I can talk. It IS very spicy, though I have a pretty low tolerence for spice, but I figure the worse it tastes the better it works? I also made myself swallow a teeny tiny bit after I read further below that it needs to coat the entire throat and not just the top."
[NAY]  07/20/2012: Eddie95 from Liverpool, Uk replies: "well its a NAY from me, been trying this for a few hours cant say anything is improving except for a burning mouth. I assume this works the same as the salt water trick in that osmosis draws water out of your inflamed throat, reducing the swelling slightly, and temporarily. but it does not "kill the bug", "disinfect the disease" etc.

most of us have flu viruses. You can't kill that with salt or antibiotics or anything. The only thing that really makes swallowing less painful is just to keep eating and swallowing. It only gets really painful if you try and stop swallowing for ages. so the more spaced out your swallows, the more they will hurt.

people are saying this definitely works, because after two days the sore throat has cleared - well duh, it would probably have cleared by then anyway, most sore throats do get significantly better after about 2 days. so you can take whatever you want and give credit to that, or you can just accept your body just got rid of it the underlying cause (because our bodies are actually pretty good at sorting things out themselves! ), and the "remedies" did nothing but maybe fractional temporary relief."

[YEA]  08/30/2012: Jane R. from Boston, Ma replies: "OMG I can't believe this worked. I am 51 and had a sore throat for 2 weeks that wouldn't go away and was going in for a medical procedure that you can't be sick for so I was in a panic. I rinsed with the Ground Cayenne Pepper (found in the spice aisle in the alphabetical section under P for Hot Pepper). I used 1/4 teaspoon in a cup of water every 3 hours or so for a total of 3 times. I didn't feel any different the first day but I was completely pain free the next day. It is now day 3 and I still don't have a sore throat. So weird that this hot spice cools a burning throat."
09/02/2012: Mia from Formerly Of Lyons, Ny replies: "Reply to Eddie95: I've never had strep throat clear up within two days with the exception of taking antibiotics. It does not get better on it's own. Also, within hours of the first dose there was a marked improvement in my case."
[YEA]  09/14/2012: Michael from Crested Butte, Colorado replies: "In reading this thread and seeing that people seem very surprised that cayenne pepper works for their sore throat, I can give you a solid pharmacological explanation of why that is: the chemical in hot peppers such as cayenne that makes them hot is called capsacin (spelling correct?), and believe it or not it is the main active ingredient in a great many ARTHRITIS medications. The science behind it has to do with something along the lines of causing the nerves to fire too much to a point where they finally turn off, so to speak (this is a dumbed-down and probably not wholly acurate explanation of the science, however the fact remains that Capsacin does have pain-dulling properties and this is no doubt why it works well in a gargle for sore throats). Thus although the cayenne feels hot at first, eventually the user experiences relief!"
10/09/2012: Lynn from St. Clair Shores, Michigan replies: "Maybe using cold water with the cayenne would be better than warm. Perhaps there would be less burning. I'm trying 1/8 tsp. Cayenne with 1/2 cup of cold water. My sore throat is caused from itching due to allergies and sinus drainage. We'll see how this remedy works for this type of sore throat."
01/26/2013: Andrea C from Cardiff, Wales replies: "You have to use WARM WATER with Cayene pepper Clair xxxxxx It switches on a neouron that lets the body know ITS COMINING!!!!!!!!!!!! Lol xxxxxxxxxxx Its also to do with 'BRAIN CHEMICALS xxxxxxxxx Colds water, negatives the efffect of CAYYENE PEPPER XXXXXXXXXXXXX So do not use COLD WATER it MUST be as hit as you can stand the water xxxxxxxx Love Andrea C"
02/05/2013: Dara from Los Angeles, Ca replies: "I've used Cayenne for about 5 years for my sore throats but I use liquid and the little bits don't get caught in my throat I dont have to wait for it to disolve and it is a much more pleasant experience. Hope this helps.

For my throat cure I use 2 fresh lemons, cayenne liquid, and I add a bit of agave warm water & it makes a delightful tea that I can sip throughout the day."

[YEA]  02/21/2013: Apple Schmidt from Twin Falls, Idaho replies: "It definitely does not suprise me how well this worked for me today. I have been an all natural freak my whole life and never ended up with something other than a broken nose and folded septum that needed a doctor's attention. (I actually straitened it my self, 2 days later, it required surgery. ) This includes, well, you name it. Cayenne is something I heard about years ago from the mother of a cousin who is 99 years old and can still whoop anyone's ass. I used 1/2 tsp. in a coffee cup of warm water, and pretty much instant relif."

[YEA]  05/29/2012: Cath from Ottawa, On, Canada: "I just had to give it one more YEA vote in case it helps give even one more person the relief it gave me. THANK YOU!"

[YEA]  05/25/2012: Tyler from Wylie, Texas: "I have suffered for about one year with a indescribable discomfort/throbbing pain on one side of my tongue. I have visited a few different doctors who could not find anything wrong with me. Anyone going through this same kind of thing has probably had the same horrible fears and emotions I have - worrying that it might be something serious such as cancer.

Two days ago I decided to use cayenne pepper as a mouthwash for a sore throat. Not only is my sore throat cured, but the tongue pain goes away for hours after using it. It does not just improve - the pain completely dissipates. Even opiate painkillers do not provide relief like this.

Here is what I do: I put one-half of a teaspoon of very hot cayenne pepper into a mouthful (2 tablespoons) of warm water. I then rinse my mouth, thoroughly, and gargle deep into the back of my throat, for about two minutes. This burns intensely the first few times.

After two minutes I spit and rinse my mouth out with water. The tongue pain worsens for about two minutes, and then goes away, completely, for several hours. Each time I go back and rinse with more cayenne, the pain goes away for a longer period of time. I have a feeling that this is somehow improving the blood flow into the tiny blood vessels in the tongue and soon I might be entirely cured.

Another thing I have done differently is I have started to brush with a little bit of coconut oil twice a day. It's very moisturizing to your oral tissue. Anyone suffering from burning tongue issues probably chews on their tongue or rubs it against their teeth, which is a constant source of irritation. The coconut oil helps soothe the irritation to a degree.

Anyway, give cayenne a shot. You have to do it regularly, but it's incredible and I feel like I have my life back. For the first time in a year I have been able to enjoy the day without constantly thinking about my tongue.

P.S. - Burning Mouth disorder has been known to drive people to insanity and even suicide. This is a serious problem and a serious source of constant pain, discomfort and irritation which can cause serious depression. If cayenne seems to be working for you, leave a reply to help others learn about this cure."

05/25/2012: Wplush from Honolulu, Hi replies: "Did you try ACV for your BMS? Where can you get Cayenne Pepper? Do you have any other problems such as digestive or skin issues? Is the Cayenne still working for you?"
05/25/2012: Tyler from Wylie, Texas replies: "You can get Cayenne pepper at most grocery stores - it's sold in the spice aisle. If given the choice between "mild" and "hot, " always pick the hot. In fact, get the spiciest type available. I have used ACV for about a year. It only seemed to help my BMS for about a week, although it does have a positive effect on the emotions and depression involved with BMS.

I used to suffer from very bad acne and took accutane (regret that decision). I have, basically, perfect skin now aside from freckles.

The cayenne is still working. I only have to use it about once a day now, and the degree of my BMS weakens each day. My life is great again for the first time in a year. I think many people suffering from this condition might be skeptical or think I'm crazy, but the cayenne really works wonders for me for this issue.

Again, the first day I had to take it every few hours. Now I only have to do it once per day. The cayenne has so many benefits anyway that I would use it even if I didn't have BMS - it's good for your gums and oral tissue because it stimulates blood flow to the area."

05/28/2012: Mama T from Sparks, Nv replies: "For years I have suffered from geographic tongue and sores on my tongue. Reactions to foods, white coating, sores that look like ringworm, cracks, and sometimes bleeding. Several years ago I started taking Enduracin, slow release niacin that is encapsulated in parafin so it won't cause the hot flashes. My husband takes it to lower his cholesterol, one before every meal. I started taking one 250mg per night as a B12 supplement. After a few weeks I noticed that my tongue was not hurting anymore! It was a healthy color and no cracks. There have been a few times when I have gone without taking it for a few days and my old symptoms return quickly. It is especially noticable if I am traveling and don't bring along my supplements and I eat out and my tongue will flare up at the restaurant making it very uncomfortable to even eat and the symtoms will last all night and cracks start to appear. I am thankful that I realized what the solution was so I can share it with you!"
[YEA]  06/12/2012: October from Berea, Oh replies: "I don't know what I have, it seems like allergies because it happens seasonal or so. It started with watery eyes and a dry scratchy throat. I took it easy and managed to keep those feelings at bay then I woke up in the middle of the night with my throat a little more scratchy & a bit sore. I got up and immediately started in on the warm salt water and I've been trying to fight it off that way. Last night I lost the battle and my throat was really bad this morning and relief lasted briefly even with hot tea.

I came here and saw this post so I tried it. I have rinsed twice now only to follow these suggestions and I feel like I will be fine at least a few hours. I will probably do it twice more this evening and try to drink as much water as possible. I know haven't had enough water and that doesn't help. Need to keep the tissues lubricated. I hope it goes away soon because I am in no mood to wait this out... Thanks for the suggestions! In the least I will settle for relief, I feel much better now : )"

[YEA]  04/22/2012: Anon from Tel Aviv, Israel: "Cayenne for sore throat worked perfect for me. Thanks"

[YEA]  05/10/2012: Enfinite5 from Orange County, Ca replies: "SAVED THE DAY! Wow im blown away that this worked.... My throat was KILLING ME! Hurt so bad, felt like I swallowed a cheese grater. I kept using throat lozenges but they make me feel sick and only temporally fix the problem. So I saw all the posts on here and thought I would give it a try.... I gargled and swallowed a little bit of the cayenne pepper and water through out the day and it instantly took away the pain and the next morning woke up completely better!"

[YEA]  03/02/2012: Jaime from Sunnyvale, Ca: "Honestly I had doubts about this but some many people recommended this that I tried it and it literally to less then a minute go the pain to go away and less the 30 minutes for me to be completely rid of my sore throat. thank you all for this remedy."

[YEA]  03/07/2012: Krista from Wolcott, Ct replies: "I occasionally get those horribly painful sore throats where I feel like my throat is swollen way in the back- maybe my tonsils. I usually suffer through it, but the last time I had one, I was staying with a friend and she made me a mixture of hot water, lemon juice, maple syrup (she didn't have honey), and cayenne pepper. There was so much relief from it! The relief didn't last very long after I finished drinking it, though (maybe 20-30 minutes). I believe it shortened the time of my sore throat, though. I was also alternating that with gargling salt water.

Today I woke up with a sore throat and at lunch time I went to the store to get lemons, honey, and cayenne pepper. I've drunk two mugs of it (one whole lemon's worth) so far. The first time I put too much cayenne pepper in it. You really only have to put in enough so that you feel a tingle in your throat but not a burning. I'm not sure if it's all due to the cayenne pepper. It might be the combination with the lemon and the honey. But it really does work."

04/04/2012: Alecia from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan replies: "How much of everything are you supposed to put for the hot water, lemon juice, honey(maple syrup), and cayenne? I would like to try this but don't want to end up more sick than I started :)"
09/08/2012: Marianne from Los Angeles, Ca replies: "Have the same question as Alecia. How much of everything do we use?"

[YEA]  02/23/2012: Barb from Waterford, Mi: "I was suffering from a severe sore throat and was willing to try anything to relieve it... Even water was torturous to drink... So I tried cayenne pepper every 15 min. for an hour as suggested. Each time was extremely painful as I gargled with it and for about 30 seconds afterward... It offered about the same relief as a saltwater gargle after that. I kept it up for a day and did not experience any healing from it.... Don't put yourself through the agony of the gargle... it's gonna take a few days to get better inspite of anything you do."

[NAY]  02/29/2012: Sickly from Los Angeles, Ca replies: "Did not work for me, my throat burns really badly, not strep, no fever, but so much pain in my throat and congestion in head. I tried this last night and today, it did not work. I did the amounts mentioned here with warm water and poured it into the back of my throat and gargled 15 seconds, repeated until I finished the glasses. It felt better for a few minutes, which happens when I gargle with hot salt water anyways, and then mostly my mouth just hurt from the spice and my throat is still in the same amount of pain. It did not help for more than a few minutes, even gargling a glass every 15 minutes for an hour didn't do anything besides clear up my sinuses for a bit."
05/23/2012: Chloe from Rochester, Nh, Us replies: "While possibly an effective method for curing sore throats due to colds, etc. , I would NOT recommend this to anyone who suffers from soreness due to something like chronic tonsilitis. For a condition such as this, the cayenne acts purely as an irritant."



DISCLAIMER: Our readers offer information and opinions on Earth Clinic, not as a substitute for professional medical prevention, diagnosis, or treatment. Please consult with your physician, pharmacist, or health care provider before taking any home remedies or supplements or following any treatment suggested by anyone on this site. Only your health care provider, personal physician, or pharmacist can provide you with advice on what is safe and effective for your unique needs or diagnose your particular medical history.


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