Dry Throat, Its Symptoms, Causes, And Available Treatments

Dry throat occurs for many reasons which are mostly minor, but sometimes can result from a more serious underlying condition.


dry throat



Dry Throat: Some Facts

  • Allergic conditions, like hay fever and others, may cause a dry throat.
  • There are medical treatments and home remedies available for a dry throat.
  • It is a good idea to see a doctor if symptoms last for longer than 1 to 2 weeks.


Dry Throat: Allergies

Around 30 to 40 percent of the world’s population is affected by allergies. When a person has seasonal allergies, substances in their environment cause their immune system to overreact.

Common triggers include:

  • pollen
  • grass
  • mold
  • dust mites
  • pet hair
  • certain foods

For a person with seasonal allergies, these allergens cause the immune system to release a chemical called histamine. The histamine released in an allergic reaction may cause:

  • a cough
  • stuffy or runny nose
  • itchy skin, mouth, or eyes


Dry Throat: Dehydration

When a person is dehydrated, they may get a dry throat. Other signs of dehydration include:

  • feeling very thirsty
  • urinating less
  • having dark urine
  • tiredness
  • dizziness

Dehydration is caused by not drinking enough water.


Dry Throat: Common Cold

The common cold may cause a dry or sore throat, alongside a runny nose or sneezing.

The common cold is a term for an infection that is caused by one of several different viruses.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an adult will get 2 to 3 colds each year, on average. A cold may make a person’s throat feel dry, scratchy, or sore. The underlying infection may also cause:

  • runny, stuffy nose
  • sneezing
  • a cough
  • mild fever
  • body aches


Dry Throat: Mononucleosis

A dry, scratchy throat may be a symptom of mononucleosis. This is a disease that is usually caused by an infection by the Epstein-Barr virus. It is most frequently passed on through a person’s bodily fluids, with saliva transmission being very common.

Mononucleosis is commonly known as mono or the “kissing disease.” It most often affects teenagers and those of college age, but a person may catch it at any time in their life.

As well as a dry, scratchy, or a sore throat, the symptoms of mono include:

  • fever
  • swollen lymph nodes in neck and armpits
  • headache
  • fatigue
  • muscle weakness
  • swollen tonsils
  • night sweats

Mono typically lasts 2 to 4 weeks, but for some, their body may take longer to recover.


Dry Throat: Acid Reflux

A dry throat may be a symptom of acid reflux. The acid in the food pipe causes a burning, as well as:

  • trouble swallowing
  • a dry cough
  • hoarse voice
  • burping

The proper name for this condition is gastroesophageal reflux disease, abbreviated to GERD. It causes acid to come up from the stomach into the food pipe.


Dry Throat: Tonsillitis

A dry throat may be a symptom of tonsillitis. This is inflammation of the tonsils, which is commonly caused by infection with a virus but can also be caused by bacteria. The tonsils are fleshy lumps at the back of the throat that help fight infections.

As well as a dry, scratchy, or a sore throat, symptoms of tonsillitis include:

  • swollen, red, or white patches on the tonsils
  • fever
  • hoarse voice
  • swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • headache
  • bad breath


Dry Throat: Strep Throat

A dry throat may be a symptom of strep throat. This is a throat infection that is caused by the bacterium, Streptococcus pyogenes.

Other symptoms of strep throat include:

  • swollen, red, or white patchy tonsils
  • fever
  • swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • rash
  • nausea and vomiting
  • body aches


Dry Throat: Treatments

Treatments can include:

  • staying hydrated
  • gargling
  • sucking on lozenges
  • night time humidifier
  • nasal decongestants
  • antihistamines
  • corticosteroid nasal sprays

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