What causes most sore throats in children?

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A virus causes most sore throats. Viruses cannot be treated with an antibiotic. Bacteria called Group A Streptococcus -- “Strep” -- cause some sore throats, and would benefit from treatment with an antibiotic. Have your child seen by a doctor to check if a test for Strep needs to be done.
A “quick test for Strep” can be done to find out if a virus or Strep caused your child’s sore throat. If the quick test is negative, an overnight culture will be done. Sometimes, the culture is positive even though the quick test was negative.

Continue Learning about Viral Throat Infections

Viral Throat Infections

Viral Throat Infections

Aside from strep throat, most sore throats caused by are contagious, viral throat infections that cannot be treated with antibiotics. The most common culprits of a viral throat infection include coxsackievirus, mononucleosis, and ...

the flu. Mononucleosis (mono) is a virus that causes symptoms that can last for weeks or months at a time. Viral throat infections are best treated with rest, liquids and other home remedies. If the sore throat causes you to have trouble breathing or a high fever, or results in spots in the back of your throat, call your doctor.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.