Propolis Benefits for Sore Throat
Disclaimer: This content has been produced purely for informational and educational purposes only and is never intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical guidelines including diagnosis, advice, and treatment.
Propolis has long been valued in medicines for thousands of years and has widely been used in a range of conditions especially infective conditions such as dental infections, skin infections, and infections inside the mouth. These days, people swear of propolis benefits for sore throat. But does it really work? Let’s find out together.
In this article, we’ll be exploring whether there are any propolis benefits for sore throat and if there is any scientific evidence that supports this health claim. But before we get into how propolis can help with a sore throat, it’s worth knowing the basics of the sore throat a little bit more. So, let’s get started.
Table of contents
- What is a sore throat?
- Symptoms of sore throat
- Causes of sore throat
- What is propolis?
- Benefits of using propolis for sore throat
- How to use propolis
- Precautions and side effects
- Final words
What is a sore throat?
A sore throat, also medically known as pharyngitis, is a condition in which a person feels pain, irritation, dryness, and scratchiness in his or her throat. A sore throat might worsen with talking and swallowing. It often accompanies infections like viral infections caused by cold or the flu virus.
Symptoms of sore throat
Symptoms of sore throat may vary from person to person depending on the severity and causative factors. Common symptoms may include:
- Pain and feeling of irritation in the throat
- Pain that worsens on using of voice and swallowing
- Difficulty talking or swallowing
- Hoarse voice
- Swollen glands in the jaw or neck
Sore throat caused by viral infections may associate with other symptoms as well, such as:
- Runny nose
- Body aches
- Vomiting or nausea
Causes of sore throat
Sore throats are commonly caused by viral or bacterial infections, but also may have causes that are not always diseases such as dryness caused by breathing via the mouth, a burn caused by hot foods, and overuse of voice. Certain irritants such as pollution or chemicals may also cause a sore throat. Other causes include allergies, tumors, muscle strain, acid reflux as well as others.
The throat is a primary immune barrier that acts as a key roadblock against the progress of harmful intruders such as irritants and viruses. When attacked, the throat triggers inflammation, the body’s critical defense response to heal and protect from within whose main symptoms are a sensation of scratchiness, sensitivity to swallowing, and pain.
What is propolis?
Propolis is a resinous mixture made by bees from various natural plant exudates such as resins, flower oils, vegetable balsams, waxes, and pollen to build their nests or hives. Research suggests that it consists of more than 300 natural organic compounds that have many medicinal properties and uses so that it can protect the hives from diverse natural elements.
Human civilizations have co-opted the benefits of this vital natural substance for thousands of years. The history of using propolis in traditional medicines for the treatment of various health conditions is possibly as old as 15 thousands years.
Benefits of using propolis for sore throat
To create propolis, bees start collecting sticky plant substances in their mouth where these substances get combined with their own saliva and its enzymes to yield a material that is antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory. Bees then apply this mixture to the cells of honeycomb to help hold them together and seal up cracks, as well as to help prevent diseases and damage caused by natural elements such as pollution, virus, bacteria, and others.
Propolis contains hundreds of polyphenols, amino acids, and antibacterial compounds that offer a wide range of health benefits. It’s most significantly known in medicine for its tremendous infection-fighting activities.
So, bee propolis has properties that can help with managing symptoms of sore throat such as easing pain, reducing irritation, soothing scratchiness, and even helping combat the viral infection causing it.
A 2016 study published in the International Journal of General Medicine concluded that propolis has noticeable anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antibacterial and could be used as an effective and safe add-on therapy for the treatment of viral pharyngitis (sore throat) and acute otitis media (AOM).
How to use propolis
Propolis is available in several supplementary forms such as capsules, tablets, and liquid extracts. For sore throats, most clinicians recommend liquid drops or sprays. Placing 15 drops of liquid propolis extract under the tongue two to three times a day has been found beneficial to help alleviate sore throat and its associated symptoms such as pain, difficulty swallowing, and feeling of scratchiness. Your doctor may also combine it with propolis capsules as well if you have other symptoms of viral infections such as fever, body aches, and cough.
Precautions and side effects
Propolis is truly safe in recommended doses unless or until you have allergies to bee products. People who have sensitivity to bee products may experience symptoms of allergic reactions such as breathing problems, skin rashes, and others.
A certain component in propolis may slow down the process of clotting and may affect the efficacy of certain medications such as blood thinners or medications used to treat bleeding disorders. So, people who have a risk of bleeding disorders should avoid propolis supplements.
Propolis has also been found safe for oral use during breastfeeding. Doses up to 300 mg per day have been used safely for up to 10 months. But there is no reliable data to know whether it is safe for pregnancy. It’s always a good idea to consult with a professional naturopathic healthcare provider before starting propolis for a sore throat or any other health condition to determine your safety and the best method of use.
There are hundreds of natural organic compounds in propolis that have significant medicinal properties. Antioxidants, amino acids, and a whole variety of polyphenols, especially flavonoids present in propolis have noticeable antibacterial, antiviral, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory actions. Propolis benefits for sore throat include easing pain, reducing the feeling of scratchiness, and soothing throat irritation. It can also help fight viral infections often associated with a sore throat.
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